Mental effects of gender abuse
If you have been abused you may feel a little bit more afraid than usual, you may be in shock from what happened to you or you may be angry and have questions as to why this happened – no two people are the same. These feelings are natural choma, so never feel ashamed if you are feeling like this. To understand in detail what gender abuse or gender-based-violence is, click here. When it comes to gender abuse, some of the bruises you experience are on the inside. Being a victim of gender abuse can play a role in your mental well-being. The negative effects can be so strong that they can trigger mental illnesses and disturb your daily activities. Here are the mental effects, and illnesses, of gender abuse and ways to get help.
Post- Traumatic Stress Disorder
Choma, it’s natural to feel afraid and upset when you believe you’re being abused, especially by someone you know, love and trust. However, if you still have the same emotions consistently weeks or months later and it starts affecting almost every aspect of your daily living, it may be time to visit a therapist or a mental health professional because you may be going through post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) which is a type of anxiety disorder that happens after a traumatic experience such as gender abuse.
Choma, after your diagnosis, you can treat PTSD by visiting a therapist or a mental health professional who specialises in treating PTSD for assistance. There are two types of treatment, there is talk therapy and there is medication. There are cases where some patients use both. Treatment is not the same for everyone; so choma, what works for you may not work for someone else who is going through PTSD. Substance abuse will not help in treating PTSD, and in some cases it may worsen the mental illness. Try and avoid alcohol and drugs during this time, so you can fully focus on getting better choma.
If you have been abused choma, you may find that you are turning to food whenever you feel sad, angry, upset, to name a few emotions. This may be a way to relieve a range of emotional tensions that you are going through. Whether you have anorexia nervosa, where you purposefully starve yourself, despite being hungry; or bulimia, where there’s an extreme case of overeating followed by fasting or self-induced vomiting or purging, if you have an eating disorder then you need to seek help choma.
If you suffer from an eating disorder choma, it can be detrimental to both your physical and mental well-being. There are treatment plans out there that are designed to cater to your individual needs.
- Individual or family therapy
- Nutritional counselling (an ongoing process where your health professional or a dietician can assess your nutritional intake and find out what you need to change)
Personality Disorders (PD)
If lately you have been feeling upset or troubled for long periods of time and don’t quite understand where these feelings come from, or you’ve started to experience problems at school, work or home or your social relationships have been negatively affected where people close to you don’t understand the change in behaviour, then you may have a personality disorder choma.
Treatment can help decrease the symptoms of PD. Talk therapy is usually the first choice for many people diagnosed with PD. It will involve one or two sessions a week with a mental health professional specialising in PD. For therapy to be effective for you, make sure you feel comfortable first with your therapist choma.
Apart from starting out abusing drugs and alcohol, some people who have been abused may also try smoking, or overeating to cope but choma, this may lead to greater physical and emotional difficulties. Talk to a doctor, nurse, or therapist for help if you start showing signs of these mental illnesses. Speak to someone you trust, whether it’s a family member, friend or doctor/nurse to find healthy ways of reducing stress after diagnosis. Take good care of your body (physically and emotionally) through exercise, eating well and hanging around people who appreciate your presence and can reach out for support to – be it your family, friends or community, and slowly learn to find your joy again.
Choma, sometimes violence that happened a while back can still affect you. Even if many years have passed since you were abused, you still can ask for help from a therapist, nurse or mental health specialist. Your experience of being abused long ago is not any less important than someone who was affected earlier than you.
Lastly, always remember that this abuse is NOT your fault. You didn’t cause this to happen, you in no way provoked the perpetrator; the perpetrator caused the harm.
If you know anyone who has been abused or witnessed abuse, you can help them. Listen to them, and show that you too care. If you feel that you can’t, rather talk to a nurse, doctor, or therapist about professional help for them or contact SADAG (The South African Depression and Anxiety Group).
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