One of my client-friends read my last blog about “How to Talk to Your Kids About Sex” and she commented, “There is lots of information about this topic in books and on the web. The harder one is “how to talk to your counsellor about sexual brokenness.”
My comment? “You’re on!” Here is what she wrote.
Like much else, sexual healing can begin with the decision to become well, based on the belief we are intended to be so. Once the decision is made we have a foundation. Healing can be built. Progress can be measured.
The next step can be a hard one to take — speaking.
Why is this hard? Our culture’s obsession with all things sexual creates the illusion that we are all experts. We are not. Understanding our own sexuality remains challenging. For some, the effort to speak of the sexual pain woven into personal history is daunting, even near impossible.
We may feel that as adults we should know how to speak the language of sexual confidence and identity. But when that confidence and identity is exactly what has been so deeply hurt, we find ourselves without words.
Conversations that build a language rich in affirmation of our decision to become well are initially more important than conversations disclosing the details of “what happened.” Speaking too soon about “what happened” can potentially repeat, or even increase, the hurt we carry. Having words to describe our goal of wellness for all parts of our life and being gives us hope, and hope protects us.
Once this language of sexual wellness is learned, there can be greater confidence of being seen in the light of the sexual identity we are aiming for. If I can say what I want, perhaps I can be what I want. This new language can ease the grip that sexual pain from the past has on self image. It seems a slow process, but our hunger for affirmation quickly renders words of hope familiar and we find ourselves becoming comfortable in the foreign land of healthy sexual identity long before we arrive.