This story asks prompts that some may find triggering or upsetting. Please prioritize your own wellbeing and do whatever is best for your healing!
July 2022 Update: Thank you all for your amazing support and contributions! At this time I am no longer looking for new contributions but will update this page if that changes! The book will be coming out April 2023 and I can’t wait to share it with you!
For those of you who may not know, I am in the midst of writing Healing Honestly the book! Coming in spring of 2023 from Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Healing Honestly will offer survivor-to-survivor support for people who’ve experienced CSA looking to reduce self-blame and self-shame. And I need your help! It is so important that this book contains a huge variety of survivors’ voices, experiences and wisdom!
I would love participation from anyone who identifies as a childhood sexual abuse survivor (it’s totally cool if you don’t love that term or feel like you fully embody it— I use it to simply things on my end, not because I care about some specific definition of sexual harm). I welcome people of all gender identities, ages, backgrounds, sexual orientations and ethnicities from all across the world to participate! It can be anonymous too!
How to participate:
- Look at the list below and decide which prompts speak to you. It can be one prompt or multiple prompts! Whatever you like!
- Write up your response(s), 1-4 sentences per prompt is great! Make sure you let me know which prompt you’re responding to
- Include in your response what first name you’d like to be referred to as, it can be any first name you’d like and what pronouns you use.
- Email your response to HealingHonestlyTheBook@gmail.com and I will reply as soon as I can but it may be a few weeks as a heads up!
- I will 100% notify you if the quote is to be used in the book and ask again for your consent to use your words. If you’ve changed your mind you have the opportunity to tell me!
If any of this feels unpleasant or not aligned with your healing, please do not push yourself! The top priority is for you to do whatever is best for your healing, always! I’ve organized the prompts by the chapters of the book! If you’re interested in participating but have questions please shoot me an email at HealingHonestlyTheBook@gmail.com.
Prompts about what healing means to you:
1. What does healing mean specifically to you? Has that personal definition changed for you over time? [shoutout to Mirror Memoirs for teaching me this question!]
2. What has been a moment or experience you can point to that showed you that you are healing? Can be as big or small as you want!
3. How do you embrace the humor and absurdity in healing?
4. Have you experienced months/years where your trauma wasn’t impacting you a lot, to then, all of a sudden, have your trauma resurface intensely? How do you resist the idea that we are somehow “backsliding” when that happens?
5. What does “healing is nonlinear” mean to you?
Prompts about relationships/dating as a survivor:
6. Have you ever had to deal with and overcome feelings like we are “damaged goods”? If yes, what are some things or ways of thinking that helped you do that?
7. Are there people in your life who’ve made you feel like you have “too many needs” to be in a relationship?
8. What feels inaccurate about the way romance and being a trauma survivor is portrayed on TV or in movies? What impact does that have on you?
9. What advice do you have for other survivors navigating disclosing their trauma to someone they are romantically involved with?
10. If that disclosure doesn’t go as hoped, what are some words of comfort, support or coping strategies you could offer that survivor?