Dear Hope: Is There Worth After Sexual Assault?

By Gwendolyn Young

Dear Hope:

Do you think a person who has been sexually and physically assaulted could ever feel worthy or valuable again? – Hurt Beyond Measure

Dear Hurt Beyond Measure:

I absolutely believe that a person can feel worthy and valuable again–even after assault.  First, if this type of assault has happened to you, I am so sorry to hear it. I hope that you have taken the necessary steps to obtain resources and counseling to help you heal and come through this terrible ordeal.  Secondly, if you are aware of your attacker’s identity, I hope that you have gained the courage from within, and have the support of your family and/or community network, to speak out against this person.


Now, regarding feeling worthy and valuable again – this is a choice! You ARE NOT, I repeat You ARE NOT what happened to you! You ARE NOT any less worthy or valuable than you were BEFORE the attack happened.  The attack is a reflection of the perpetrator, not the victim.  Make a CHOICE today that you will not allow this life event to define you, to rob you of anything else, or to make you afraid to be the amazing individual you are.  Make a CHOICE today to not be a victim, to get the help you need and deserve, and give yourself the time to heal. I hope that everything works out for you. I am seeding for the greatness inside of you to emerge.

This column is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical, legal or financial advice. Questions may be submitted anonymously or via pseudonym to, or Gwendolyn Young, M.A., C.P.C., is the Executive Director of Seed of Hope Foundation, a nonprofit girls mentoring organization based in Westchester, IL.


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