Editor's Note re Women's Healing

14 Oct 2018 2:02 PM | Carol A. Bouldin (Administrator)

In light of the recent Senate hearings and the fact that women comprise the vast majority of clients, as well as therapists, not to mention are 52% of the population, we therapists would be well-advised to be especially attuned to our female clients, co-workers, and ourselves as many of us will have been triggered by this replay of the Thomas hearings nearly 30 years ago where Anita Hill was grilled by some of the same men questioning Dr. Christine Blasey Ford. 

Given the fact that the testimony of the women who came forward to share their sexual abuse experiences at the hands of the nominee was ultimately disregarded, and the solicitous attention given to the nominee while they were subjected to the usual disbelief, scrutiny re motives, and in Dr. Ford’s case, even death threats, these events have to be evoking strong feelings that are difficult to manage.  In addition, the profuse apologies by several of the men in the Senate to the nominee for “what he has gone through” and then the president’s callous, insensitive statements about how it is “a dangerous time to be male” have to be especially excruciating to bear for female victims of male violence and assault.  Women need safe spaces to recover.

Those of us therapists who have specialized in treating women and abuse victims realize that when dealing with our female clients, whether individually or in couple therapy, these kinds of events will very likely be eliciting anxiety, rage, depression, and/or an exacerbation of PTSD symptoms, and may be causing a lot of tension in women’s relationships, especially with males with whom they may be intimate.  It is crucial that we act in a manner that telegraphs our unequivocal support, empathy, and understanding for the real victims in order to not only help them heal, but to not inflict more wounds.

 Carol A. Bouldin, LMFT

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