My point here is that therapists treating male survivors of sexual abuse must often walk a fine line. Yes, to heal from this trauma our clients must talk about and feel the pain of their abuse. Unfortunately, as they’re feeling the shame and pain of their abuse, they’re also feeling shame and pain about becoming vulnerable and violating the man rules. It’s a double-whammy.
As such, with male survivors of sexual abuse the healing process typically and necessarily proceeds slowly, in fits and starts, with plenty of breaks. Often it is two steps forward, one and three-quarters steps back. Nevertheless, over time, if the therapist and client are both willing to persevere, healing can and does occur. And with it comes a significant reduction in the client’s concurrent anxiety, depression, addictions, and other problematic symptoms.