We Are Survivors 

This blog is dedicated to the tens of millions of adult survivors of child abuse and neglect who get up every day and try to work and function in a world that seems to not care about us.

A Safe Place to Go

During the 23 years I spent in therapy recovering from the brutal abuse I suffered when growing up, there were many times I mentally crawled out of my therapist’s office and sat in the waiting room. It wasn’t uncommon for me to sit there for 15-20 minutes so that I could stabilize long enough to safely drive home. I often said to my therapist, “I wish there was somewhere safe to go where I can be in a comfortable environment, do fun things, and be around people who understand what I am going through.” I made a promise to myself that one day I would work to make such a place available to other survivors. That day has come.

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Effects of Maltreatment on Brain Development

Scientists are beginning to see the evidence of altered brain functioning as a result of early abuse and neglect. Growth in each region of a baby’s brain largely depends on receiving stimulation which spurs activity in that region. This stimulation forms the foundation for learning.[1]

Researchers use the term plasticity to describe the way the brain creates, strengthens, and discards synapses and neuronal pathways in response to the environment. The brain’s plasticity is the reason that environment plays a vital role in brain development.

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Child Abuse is a Humanitarian Crisis

I have been working hard to answer a question posed to me. Someone asked, “Why should I care about child abuse and neglect? There are a lot of problems out there. Why should I care?” It has taken me some time to get my arms around that question. The answer is that child abuse and neglect is the largest humanitarian crisis in America. A humanitarian crisis exists when there is a huge need to relieve suffering and save lives, and that is exactly what it is.

Recent Comments
Lindagail
It amazes me how this is such a hidden subject, yet every once in a while a child's story is so horrendous, that it is splattered ... Read More
Sunday, 26 May 2013 11:58
shelaghstephen
The passivity regarding this obvious emergency is unique. If it were just that many people simply don't care, then there would be ... Read More
Thursday, 04 July 2013 19:38
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Adult Survivors' Attachment Styles

Children are born with needs and feelings. Infants develop internal models from day one as to how they feel about themselves and how they view other people’s behaviors. Depending upon how they are cared for when they cry or need attention, they develop basic beliefs about themselves as to whether they are lovable or unlovable, and if they deserve punishment, how helpless they believe they are, and if they can really get their needs met by other people. Depending upon the degree of how much they are either attracted to, or want to avoid being with, their caretakers impacts their ability to maintain meaningful relationships later on in their life.

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Putting Isolation on Ice

“I’m all alone and nobody understands me or what I’m going through.”  As an adult survivor of child abuse and neglect, do you ever feel that way?  Starved for love, nurturing, a sense of community, positive relationships and intimacy?  Afraid of people, and uncertain of how to act in social situations?  If so, you actually have plenty of company—such feelings of isolation are extremely common among adult survivors.  And there is hope.  This guide answers common questions adult survivors have about the nature, methods and effects of isolation.  It also describes the benefits of overcoming isolation and presents a spectrum of practical strategies specifically geared to helping adult survivors climb rung by rung out of the well of isolation, at their own pace.1

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