Stories of Resilience:

CAREER: Survivors of Sexual Trauma experience debilitating shame & isolation

Her Story:

Name: Dr. Shena Young
Born: Houston, TX
Lives: Los Angeles, CA
Handle: @embodiedtruthhealing

I am Black + Woman + fluid, soft spoken & powerful.  

I am a body centered psychologist-healer and trauma informed care consultant/yoga teacher. I own a private practice, embodied truth healing and psychological services in LA. 

In my practice I hold sacred space for BIWOC, with an emphasis on healing holistically (mind + body + heart + spirit) from sexual and intergenerational trauma

I have been working with BIPOC communities my entire career and while I am so excited by the collective unlearning we are doing around mental health stigmas in the last couple of years, with the creation of more resource directories and increase in hard public conversations, I am deeply concerned about the culture of silence regarding sexual abuse within our communities.  

I get it.  It’s complicated.  It’s traumatic.  It’s scary to talk about.  And scary to not talk about.  

Sexual trauma in all its forms, childhood sexual abuse, rape, molestation, and incest is an epidemic. 

A quick google search will confirm the devastating prevalence of sexual trauma for womxn. For womxn of color the vulnerability & prevalence increases, and generally, the more layered and intersecting identities the higher the numbers go. 

For example, one in four black girls will be sexually abused before the age of 18, and one in five Black womxn are survivors of rape (Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report, 2003). 

Transgender and non-binary individuals are victimized at higher rates, with almost half reporting being sexually assaulted at some time in their lives (US Transgender Survey, 2015).  

And yet… survivors of sexual trauma experience debilitating shame & isolation. 

Often times their loved ones do not believe them when they are brave enough to share what happened, and they may experience retraumatization in the help seeking process due to systemic issues and culture of “blaming the victim.” Consequently, survivors often suffer in silence.

I am dreaming and weaving an existence where there is space for our many stories, and space for our healing. Space where survivors of color can journey in the return to self in the loving and affirming embrace of womxn that support them in holding the weight of the pain.

When someone tells you that they were sexually assaulted, please believe them. 


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