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Sexual assault therapist san diego

Andrea Vaz Antunes

Therapist, Licensed Clinical Social Worker

We are all in a state of change. We are either approaching a change, in the midst of change or looking back at a change. These transitions are unavoidable and they can be both liberating and/or paralyzing. Our work together will initially focus on relieving the distressing feelings you are experiencing within your body and mind. We will then begin to identify your own style of change. We will practice it together and you will begin to meet these changes with grace and less stress.

San Diego, CA 92103
1.6 Miles away

Provides Sexual Abuse or Assault Therapy

I specialize in working with adolescents and adults who have experienced significant trauma in their lives, particularly child

sexual abuse

, child maltreatment, and intimate partner violence.

I believe that we all experience our own unique traumas in life, and it’s how we respond to them that shapes our view of the world and ourselves. I’m here to help you see things from a different lens, or perhaps just help you develop new ways of responding to your own individual experiences. Healing your traumas allows you to regain your sense of power and strengthen your sense of self. I take a holistic approach to healing and wellness and believe that each client requires a unique, person-centered approach.

Black and white photo of two hands in front of face. Representing sexual abuse counselling.Black and white photo of two hands in front of face. Representing sexual abuse counselling. 1 in 4 Americans will have experienced sexual abuse in their life, yet an even fewer number will ever reveal this to someone. This is unfortunate because a large part of healing from this type of trauma is getting support and working to identify how this experience has impacted your story, your journey and your current life circumstances. Sexual abuse counselling can help.

1 in 4 Americans will have experienced sexual abuse in their life, yet an even fewer number will ever reveal this to someone. This is unfortunate because a large part of healing from this type of trauma is getting support and working to identify how this experience has impacted your story, your journey and your current life circumstances. Sexual abuse counselling can help.

Sexual abuse, sexual harassment, sexual assault and rape are all considered to be traumatic experiences and many times people who have survived such incidents go on to meet criteria for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It’s best to seek sexual abuse counselling and meet with a therapist so that they can more fully evaluate the extent of your symptoms and assess whether you meet criteria for PTSD or not.

BACA JUGA:   Is psychology and psychiatrist the same

Sexual Abuse Counselling at Freedom Within Center

We realize it can be very difficult to open up to someone new about such a sensitive event in your life, but we promise to be non-judgmental and welcoming in our approach with you. During sexual abuse counselling, it’s not uncommon for survivors of sexual abuse to take longer to feel comfortable with their therapist or to open up about their experience, and that is okay! We want to come alongside you at your own pace while gently nudging you to your goals.

Our therapists are trained in various trauma modalities that are proven to effectively decrease symptoms related to sexual trauma. The sexual abuse therapy methods include but are not limited to:

  • Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR)
  • Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT)
  • Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT)
  • Trauma Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (TF-CBT)
  • Prolonged Exposure Therapy (PE)
  • Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
  • Community Resiliency Model (CRM)

Freedom Within Center provides a safe place to seek therapy for sexual abuse victims. To discover what a difference sexual abuse counselling can make for you, request an appointment today.

Landon Harlan:
What would you say would be your immediate advice if they’ve been a victim of sexual assault, what is it that they should do?

Jessica Pride:
I would one realize this is a confusing time and the body, when you’re in shock, you’re going, did this really just happen to me? Is this my fault? What’s going on? What do I do realize that that feeling is normal. So there are a couple things that I would advise you to do. One, preserve the evidence. Don’t take a shower, don’t pee, don’t brush your teeth and collect your clothing. Most survivors, the first thing they wanna do is wash away the memory and clean themselves, right? Because they feel gross and disgusting. And so they get in the shower, they brush their teeth, they wash the sheets, they delete the text messages. So I would say the first thing is, is don’t do that, preserve it all. Maybe you don’t wanna have a suit. Maybe you don’t wanna go to the police maybe, but save it in case, you know, in a couple days you decide you do wanna do something, do not delete all the text messages or the evidence.

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If you are going to get a SAR exam, which is the exam where they go and they collect evidence off of your body, then you will need to do it the, the sooner in time after the assault, the better, especially if you think that you were drugged as your body metabolizes, the drugs or the alcohol, you are losing evidence by the minute. So trying to get to the hospital as soon as possible. And actually about that in California, most people think, and especially San Diego, that you go straight to a hospital and they’re gonna do your start exam there at the hospital. Not true. The exams are actually done in special centers that specialize in SAR examinations. And so the best thing to do is actually stay home, stay home, and call the police, call the police, let them know what has happened to you.

And they will either escort you, or they will tell you where to go, because it is a a special location, different on every county and go straight to the start center, take your clothes, take all the evidence. You know, if you have to pee, I mean, that’s kind of one of those interesting things, right? Does everyone have a sterile cup at home? Probably not to pee in intake with you, but just try and minimize how much food and liquids you’re drinking, cuz you’re helping your body metabolize. And so you’re not gonna get an accurate count on if you were drugged,

Landon Harlan:
Right? So it sounds like the most important thing for someone to do it in terms of preservation of evidence is whatever may be there. Like you said, from text messages to clothing calling the police is really a big first step.

Jessica Pride:
Definitely. And sometimes that’s a really hard step because people think I call 9 1, 1, this is scary. I’ve never called 9 1 1 and they’re really frightened. So I think the second thing would be is, you know, or simultaneously is surround yourself by someone who loves you and cares for you. Who’s gonna be a support system for you, someone who’s gonna reassure you that it, it’s not your fault. If you’re not sure if you’ve been sexually assaulted, you know, you can call your local rape crisis center. They have hotlines that pick up 24 hours a day, seven days a week and ask them, you can call someone like me and my team, and we’d be happy to talk to you. All consultations are free. So don’t worry about having to pay legal fee just because you call to find out and then, you know, take that support person with you to the start center.

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If you choose to do that make sure you take some clothing, a change of clothing because they will take your clothing from you. So, and then after all of those things heal, the biggest thing is to be kind to yourself and to give yourself some self care, whether that’s counseling, whether that’s meditation, a walk going for a run yoga over the next days, weeks, years your body has to process that trauma. And so what tools are you giving yourself to help do that? And as you’re going through your everyday life and realizing like I’m really anxious or I’m more volatile and, and sensitive than normal, don’t beat yourself up about that. Go, okay, this is part of it. I get it. Okay. I need to ground myself. I need to do something for me. If anything, and above all you need love. You need to love yourself more than anything during these times because it’s hard. It’s super hard.

You were hurt; violated in a way that most people won’t or can’t understand.  You aren’t believed.  You aren’t supported.  You can’t even believe it yourself.Your emotions are intense, maybe even out of control.  Sadness, helplessness, rage, fear, anxiety, hopelessness, anger…or maybe you feel nothing at all, just numb. Rape, assault, molestation, domestic violence, child sexual abuse, sexual trauma.  Whatever we call it, it was possibly the most intrusive and devastating experience of your life.  Someone else hurt you and you are suffering the consequences.   It isn’t fair.  It isn’t right.  And now, you are ready to do something about it. Trauma is about living in the past.   Moving your life forward has become painful and difficult.  Your focus, school, work, relationships, sexual identity, sexual self, your goals and passion for life are all affected.  Most of all, your relationship with yourself. Find your future by facing this now. The only thing standing in your way right now…is you.  All it takes is making the decision to not live this way.  Put aside the hurt and guilt and shame, just for a moment, and reach out. Press the button below right now and simply say, “I’m ready.”