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Rape Survivor: Still Struggling 3 Years Later

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Hi. Three years ago this Father’s Day, I was date raped. This happened about 4 months before I got pregnant with my two year old. Lately I have been having a really hard time mentally dealing with the memories of being raped, I have even been having terrible crying spells. Is it normal to still be having spells of complete terror and crying? I have alzo been having an increase in nightmares. I have been under a lot of stress recently because my son’s father is coming up in july and we are not on good terms. Knowing i had recently been raped he pressured me into sleeping with him by cheating on me after I orignially refused to sleep with him, which added to the pain from being previously raped. I feel like lately I’ve been an emotional basket case!

Rape Survivor: Still Struggling 3 Years Later

Answered by on -

A.

The memories and crying spells may be the result of your high levels of stress and the recent incident in which you were pressured into having sex. It may also be the result of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

PTSD is a stress-related, anxiety disorder that may develop after the exposure to a traumatic event. A stress reaction is natural after having experienced a traumatic incident. PTSD is diagnosed when the emotional reactions to the trauma become intrusive, reoccurring and involuntary. These reactions may include: experiencing distressing memories or dreams associated with the event, having flashbacks, avoiding certain stimuli that remind you of the traumatic event, feeling tense, difficulty sleeping, concentrating, and so forth.

You would benefit from counseling and possibly medication. Medication might help to “take the edge off” and help you to feel more relaxed. Counseling could assist you in dealing with the trauma, developing relaxation strategies and managing your feelings. Ask your family doctor for a referral to a therapist who specializes in trauma and anxiety disorders. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

Rape Survivor: Still Struggling 3 Years Later

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and Assistant Professor of Social Work and Forensics with extensive experience in the field of mental health. She works in private practice with adults, adolescents and families. Kristina has worked in a large array of settings including community mental health, college counseling and university research centers.

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2018). Rape Survivor: Still Struggling 3 Years Later. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 24, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2014/06/19/rape-survivor-still-struggling-3-years-later/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
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