When a child learns that they must keep the secret of being sexually abused to themselves, Parts Work could be really beneficial in healing the parts of the self who learned to survive in this way.

There are many reasons children learn to keep the secret of sexual abuse and it is important to make space for the parts who learned to cope in this way:

•Parts that were threatened to cooperate.

•Parts being told that they will not be believed (especially when perpetrator is a community leader).

•Parts that repressed the abuse as a way of survival.

•Parts afraid of being blamed or rejected.

•Parts afraid of parts who experienced the abuse (that carry the memories, feelings, sensations, etc.).

•Parts afraid of parts who “liked” the abuse.

•Parts afraid of parts who “sought” out the abuse (i.e. a child who learned early on that if they “sought” out the abuse, their perpetrator wouldn’t be as violent).

And many more…

Making space for and Reparenting these parts are crucial! Helping them unburden from holding this secret for so long helps in the healing process. Breaking silence is empowering.