Tonight is a very special graduation for me. 10 months ago I started "Passionate Hearts," a Christian, curriculum based support group for adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse. I'm taking this group through Riverlakes Community Church.
I was a little skeptical when my therapist sent me out with the assignment to check out this support group. At this time I wasn't used to discussing the particulars of my assault with others, especially people I didn't know. It was also at a non denominational Christian church. I'm always nervous when first doing things with other churches as a Mormon, because I never know how I will be received.
It turns out I had nothing to worry about. My group was amazing. I have absolutely loved being on this journey these past 10 months. We met every Monday for two hours and went through our book discussing our abuses, healing, and Christ's gospel and his love for us.
The faith, strength, and courage of these ladies I've come to know has strengthened my own faith and progressed my healing.
Sexual abuse is not something that should happen to anyone, yet unfortunately is so common. It can have devastating effects on life, but it doesn't have to be a life sentence. There is hope and there is help available. I am so grateful I decided to go to this group and take one more step in my healing.
If you are in Bakersfield and looking for a support group you can find the different ones offered at http://www.passionateheartministry.com/ There are five support groups offered. One for childhood sexual abuse, one for eating disorders, one for emotional issues, one for codependency, and one for emotional abuse survivors. I would highly recommend looking into them.