by Roslyne Sophia Breillat
In ancient mythology, the female spirit was honoured for her flowing creativity and passionate sensuality. Her womb, worshipped for its life-giving power and divine essence, continually poured new life into the earth. Her body, containing her sacred portal to sensual pleasure, was worshipped as a holy temple.
This Queen of the Night, manifesting as the feminine facet of life, represented profound richness and fertile abundance. Reverently adored for her innate wisdom, she was the inspiring muse of artists and poets.
Throughout history, woman’s natural power has become so repressed that she no longer knows who she really is. Stripped of her sacredness, she struggles to exist in an alien patriarchal world that does not honour her true nature, a world that violates the female essence whenever the media uses her body to sell a car, house or magazine.
The feminine essence is abused in many ways, including any strict religious upbringing that denies her sensuality and truth. The feminine essence is abused through the advertising of telephones and computers as “sleek and sexy.”
Woman’s love is violated through the harsh energy of crude and negative comments, forceful words or any act of physical and sexual violence. She is abused whenever a man is dishonest with her or swears at her. She is psychically raped whenever a man mentally undresses her or indulges in sexual fantasies.
Whenever a woman is abused in any way, the feminine principle is dishonoured a little more. Whenever one girl or woman cries out in pain as her body is treated with cruelty, all women suffer. Whenever any woman is treated as a sexual object instead of a Goddess of love, all of humanity suffers.
Whenever one woman begins to heal, she contributes to the healing of many other women, for all are united as sisters in a mysterious timeless place. Whenever a man enters a woman’s body with true tenderness, sensitivity, reverence, humility and passion, love grows upon this earth.
Within every young girl rests the immortal sacredness of female presence. The primal wisdom of her feminine mystery potentially manifests through her innate nurturing and healing capacities of loving and mothering. The tenderness of her love must not be stolen, but only given.
As an innocent child, naturally united with the delicious wellspring of this love, she enjoys the spontaneity of dancing, playing and running freely as the wind. Through her inherent connection with the earth, she delights in the presence of warm sunshine upon her face, gentle raindrops in her hair and comforting arms enfolding her body.
As yet untouched by the world’s hardness, she is in harmony with her natural sensuality and the intrinsic pleasure of being alive and being at one with life. She enjoys the intimate sweetness of being touched, hugged and cuddled, secure in the knowledge that she is loved.
Like a tiny seedling or budding flower, she needs tender nurturing to blossom into the fullness of woman. Trusting her caretakers, she thrives upon their loving words and embraces. What happens to her naïve trust when one or more of these adults violate the tenuous impressions still forming within her innocent young psyche?
A young girl who has been sexually molested is often so traumatised that she is unable to speak to anyone of her experience. Terror, shock or fear may silence her. Threats and bribery from her perpetrator may silence her.
Her natural behaviour usually changes quickly and radically, frequently creating depression, insomnia, bed-wetting, nausea, vomiting, allergies, nightmares or irrational fears and anxiety. She may become extremely hyperactive or silently withdrawn.
Her innocent faith in the security of her immediate world diminishes, accompanied by a deepening sense of isolation and the inability to spontaneously participate in life. She will often develop symptoms of an eating disorder or post traumatic stress disorder in a tragic effort to cope with the pain of suppressed sexual trauma.
Perceiving her environment as unsafe, she then grows up feeling afraid of the world. When her dawning sexuality emerges during puberty, she is likely to experience menstrual difficulties or obsession about schoolwork, cleanliness, exercise or extreme diets.
She may later become addicted to drugs, alcohol or abusive relationships. She might become promiscuous as a desperate way of acting out suppressed memories of sexual trauma. Or she may reject all opportunities for intimate sexual relating and nurturing friendships.
Sadly, many of the adults in her immediate environment never notice her distressing symptoms or her silent cries for help.
Statistics reveal the following: 70% of adolescent girls involved in drug abuse and 76% of women with severe mental illnesses have experienced incest; 75% of women treated for alcoholism have a history of sexual abuse that usually began in childhood; 71-90% of teenage girls have experienced child sexual assault; 80-85% of women in prisons have experienced incest and other abuse; 95% of teenage prostitutes have been sexually abused.
Current government statistics show that of 15,630 sexual assault victims, three in five are aged 19 or younger. The increase in sexual assault is entirely in children under 14, especially children under nine. Reports show that one in three girls and young women are sexually abused.
Statistics reveal that in 95% of cases the child knows the offender and that girls are most likely to be sexually assaulted by fathers or stepfathers. Many victims commit suicide or have suicidal tendencies.
Girls and women whose bodies have been sexually violated frequently develop eating disorders. Secrecy, depression, low self-esteem, self-destructive behaviour, irrational anger and panic attacks usually accompany these.
Treatments for anorexia (starving the body of much needed nutrients) or bulimia (overeating and purging the body) will always fail if they are perceived as illnesses rather than graphic symptoms whose underlying cause is the denial of female love and sensuality.
When a woman or girl who has experienced sexual abuse starves her body through excessive dieting, fasting or purging, she is feeling disempowered and unloved. Her body, expressing negativity absorbed from her environment, is reacting to the repression of her vulnerable yet powerful femininity.
Her mind perceives her beautiful body, once mythically worshipped in ancient civilisations as a holy sanctuary, as an object of disgust, something to be denied and controlled at all costs. Anorexia then becomes her secret friend, the only thing in her life that gives her a sense of power and purpose.
Through enduring the struggle of extreme starvation, she dries up inside, losing her juiciness, softness and succulence. Denying all pleasure, she then develops an obsessive desire to control everything that enters her body and her life.
Anorexia separates her from the innate sensitivity and wisdom of her love, too often becoming a tragic means of suicide.
Through bulimia, she longs to fill the void of her inner emptiness with food as a substitute for the loving nourishment she intrinsically needs. Ashamed of her lack of control, she then instantly rids her body of all it has received.
If she becomes overweight, she is creating protective physical layers that hide the openness of her vulnerability and the pain of sexual trauma. When she is extremely underweight or overweight, she feels safe, knowing that she is unlikely to attract sexual intimacy while denying her natural need for love.
Whenever she feels pressured by any situation that re-activates sexual trauma, she clings to starvation or over-eating as a way of coping with her pain. So afraid of opening her body sexually, she sees food as threatening to her security and wellbeing.
She needs help. She needs to break her silence. She needs to speak to someone she trusts. She needs to be loved.
If you are a woman healing from sexual trauma, your inner journey will bless you with the presence of faith and courage. You are learning, through the wisdom of love within you, to surrender to a higher power of love and healing. This power is within you right now.
No matter how far you have strayed from the wellspring of your spiritual source it awaits patiently within, ever calling you home. You are the muse. You are the shaman. You are the medicine woman. You are the healer.
In our so-called “sexually liberated” society, silence, secrecy, stigma and suppression still surround issues of sexual abuse. Through fear, denial, shame or a false sense of security, friends and family members often protect the perpetrator rather than the abused child. It is an established fact that children rarely lie about or imagine abuse.
Repressed memories of sexual abuse are frequently activated during puberty, menstruation, lovemaking, pregnancy, birthing and menopause. For a woman, these transforming experiences can be immensely healing, revealing the glorious power of the Goddess within her womb and deeply opening her to much beauty, worthiness and power that has long been hidden.
Menstruation is potentially a time of changing consciousness, when the womb releases past emotional residue as an intrinsic part of a naturally occurring cleansing process.
Menopause is potentially a time when the womb clears, cleanses and purges the emotional past on a much deeper level than during menstruation. Throughout their menopausal transition, many women experience the surfacing of long suppressed memories of sexual abuse, as the womb seeks a final and blessed release before birthing a new life of wisdom.
This phase can be profoundly healing, bestowing gifts of surrender, trust and a deepening truth of sexual freedom.
To the dear woman who is healing from sexual trauma—abuse is never an isolated incident that suddenly appears out of nowhere, for it has probably been happening in your family for many generations.
Through your healing process, you are gradually becoming free from negative family structures and inherited patterns of emotional conditioning. Your life-essence is slowly being restored and replenished, creating more joy and vitality for living upon this beautiful earth.
In truth, there is no victim and no perpetrator. These words are merely labels for the lack of true love in our society. You are not a victim of your life circumstances, for deep within, you are blessed life itself.
Profound healing bestows precious gifts of humility, peace, compassion, openness, surrender, acceptance and fulfilment. These tenderly merge with the innocence and wisdom of your heart’s compassion.
The person who abused you is in need of as much love and healing as you. There is only one love upon the earth. There is only one love that heals. It is impossible for someone who has received sufficient nurturing to ever harm another.
If you are in a relationship, deep and sensitive lovemaking with a devoted partner will slowly and intimately restore your trust in life and love. Through being truly loved, the beauty of your female essence will sensuously awaken as never before. Such lovemaking will also open up deep recesses in your psyche where painful memories hide.
The flowing waters of life’s integrity will wash these away. The sweet nectar of this blessed healing balm will transform your life in many ways.
Passionate delight through taking part in anything that helps you move more deeply into your body will create a healing presence of inner stillness and wellbeing. Dancing allows the joy of natural spontaneity to flow through you. Yoga and meditation enable your body to open and your being to rest in peace.
Painting, drawing and singing allow the wellspring of your innate creativity to pour forth. Massage, in a safe situation with someone you trust melts and relaxes your muscles, opening you to the sensual pleasure of loving touch. Soaking in a warm scented bath, surrounded by soft candlelight, nourishes your body and spirit.
Being with the beauty of mother earth reflects your inner beauty, for her nurturing presence knows your love, your pain and your desire to heal. Lie upon her soft green grass, allowing her vast body and her infinite love to hold and support you.
Nourish your body and being with delicious meals and fragrant oils that provide sustenance and comfort. Reach out towards others, open your heart to life. Delight in the strength and deliciousness of your femaleness, resting in the knowledge that you are only here for love. Trust in the transforming healing power within you and in the divine presence of true spiritual healing.
Remain open but do not allow anyone to touch you without gentleness and love. You are the wise guardian of your inner mystery, the custodian of your sacred inner sanctum, and your body is a beautiful temple. Anyone who tries to harm you in any way whatsoever is not worthy of your love.
There is an exquisite place inside you, beyond all thoughts, doubts and feelings of fear or negativity. This, your love, is your shining glow, and it is who you really are.
Here, in this inner place, you are purity, innocence, silence, power, space. Here, you are loved by the source of all divinity. Here, you are the sweetest tenderness and profound stillness of your being.
In this place, you have never been touched by violation or abuse of any kind. Here, you are free.
This exquisite place within you has been covered with layers of painful emotions. This same place is also inside your perpetrator, who has also most likely experienced abuse. The force of suppressed trauma is always the cause of abusive actions towards another.
You will eventually discover that your perpetrator is not evil, as you are not evil. Such is the impersonal joy of true healing.
As your inner journey deepens, resentment, blame and self-pity will transform into peace, compassion and joy. As the past dissolves, you may experience nausea, migraines, anger, panic attacks confusion, grief or sorrow. Feel it, let it all go, allow it all to dissolve as you become more aware of life’s rich blessings and eternal love.
You will become increasingly grateful for all that you receive in the present moment. You will become more open to life and love, and less ruled by fear and insecurity. Only love heals.
I wish you well on your healing journey as the Goddess of loving wisdom, wholeness and truth.
2008 © Roslyne Sophia Breillat
Statistics for this article were sourced from A.S.C.A.
www.wildheartwisdom.com - Roslyne Sophia Breillat -
Within the womb of every woman glows the consciousness of Mother Earth. Wildheartwisdom is a web site for nurturing the truth of this powerful feminine spirit and offers support for the female psyche’s many cyclic transformations. Wildheartwisdom focuses upon the deeper joy and purpose of menstruation, lovemaking, pregnancy, childbirth, mothering, relationships, menopause and beyond. Find spiritual guidance for healing from eating disorders, sexual abuse, miscarriage and abortion. There are currently three galleries featuring Sophia’s art and a selection of her article excerpts. As wildheartwisdom evolves more art and articles will be added as well as an extensive resource section. Sophia’s beautiful art and illustrations are for sale and she is currently seeking a publisher for her two books.