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THIS WEEK'S CALL TO ACTION! - Give the silenced effects of assault a voice. What does depersonalization look like? What does anxiety sound like? Share it with us using the #EngageUplift We’ll be featuring our favorites and continuing the discussion over on some group of social media accounts!

Get help online through RAINN:
National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800.656.HOPE (4653) to find an ER in your area that has SANEs.

International resources:


Engage by Uplift Episode 1: Getting Help-

Planned Parenthood: Emergency Contraception-

Planned Parenthood: STDs-

RAINN: Effects of Sexual Assault-

Joyful Heart Foundation: Effects of Sexual Assault and Rape-

WCSAP: Effects of Sexual Assault-

DSM IV PTSD Diagnosis:

Real talk for Real Change. #EngageUplift
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Follow Uplift- Online Communities Against Sexual Violence:

Produced by Kelly Kend:
Written by: Katie Twyman, Jennifer Dorsey
Kat: What's up loves? I'm your host Kat Lazo and welcome to another episode of Engage by Uplift, a video series aimed at having real talk for real change when it comes to sexual assault.

What happens to someone after they've been sexually assaulted? What are the effects? Everyone experiences an assault and its aftermath differently. And remember you are not alone. There are people who are trained to help survivors of sexual assault. They can guide you through the effects of the trauma that you faced.

So what do these effects look like? Today we'll be talking about immediate effects and long-term effects.

Physical effects. First and foremost, after an assault, it's important to make sure that you are safe. Taking care of any physical concerns will help alleviate those emotions and and anxieties that you will face. If you are physically hurt in any way -- badly bruised, bleeding, or any internal pain -- you should get immediate medical attention.

Sexual assaults can leave physical effects that are long-term - primarily pregnancies or contracting an STD. We've included some links to resources from Planned Parenthood in our description box down below that can help you with these concerns.

Emotional effects. Pretty much everyone who survives an assault deals with the emotional rollercoaster that follows. Guilt, grief, stress, hatred, anger, sadness - every feeling, or none. It's completely normal to struggle with a host of emotions after an assault. There's nothing wrong with how you're feeling and it's important to allow yourself to feel those things.

I'd also like to note that it's very common for survivors to feel guilty, but remember this was not your fault. When someone forces themselves on you, the guilt is entirely on them. Period. Don't forget that.

Post-traumatic stress disorder, also known as PTSD for short, is often associated with trauma soldiers and veterans; but it also applies to other forms of trauma, like sexual assault or emotional abuse.

Emotional distress and self-harm. You might find yourself experiencing anxiety or depression in the aftermath of your abuse or assault. You may have a difficult time experiencing emotions. This is called emotional numbing. Many people who are recovering from a trauma struggle with thoughts of suicide, self harm, or substance abuse.

When you find yourself using harmful coping mechanisms to deal with your pain, you should reach out to someone you trust. Know that there's no shame in what you're going through, and it's okay to ask for and accept help. If you're thinking about hurting yourself or others, you should reach out for help immediately. Hotlines can be a quick way of reaching out when you need help. We've linked some down below in our description box. You can also call 911 if that's what you prefer.

Dissociation. A psychological effect that is rarely discussed is disassociation. This is where you develop a detachment between your thoughts and the things around you. It can feel like you're watching yourself from above or like there's a void between your mind and your body. Or it can feel like the world around you doesn't exist.

It's possible that at one point detaching yourself from your thoughts or your physical surroundings is the only way to get through the day. But this disassociating can make it really hard to handle your emotions, and more than anything this level of attachment can be really scary and unnerving. If you are experiencing these emotions it's critical for your health that you seek out help.

Social effects. When recovering from an assault, you're likely to run up against other people's assumptions. Many people approach these situations with their own preconceived notions of what's right. They might say really ignorant and hurtful things like: "Why'd you go to that party?" "Why would you go into a room with that person?" "Were you leading them on?" "Were you drinking?" "What were you wearing?" and the list goes on. Remember that there is nothing - and I repeat, nothing - that you can do to deserve or invite, or in any way provoke an assault.

There is no magical cure from recovering from an assault. You have been violated, your autonomy has been taken away, and you have been through a trauma. No matter if it was physical or emotional, you were hurt and you have the right to deal with it however healthy and productive it is for you. If you want to learn more about getting help, feel free to watch this video. We've also included a link to that video in the description box down below.  The most important person that you need to listen to is you.

This week's call to action we wanted you to take the invisible effects of living through an assault and give them a voice. What does depersonalization look like? What does anxiety sound or look like? Share in the comments down below, and if you're on social media, make sure to share using the hashtag EngageUplift. We'll make sure to share some of your answers in a future video along with our social media platforms.

When you experience an assault you're working through it in your own way, on your own time, keep that control. You don't just "get over it" or "move on". You are allowed to be angry, frustrated, upset, and any other emotions weeks, months, or years afterwards. That's entirely OK. Getting better looks different on each person.

Alright, that's it for today. Thanks for watching! If you enjoyed this video, make sure to give it a thumbs up. While you're at it, why not subscribe? Don't forget to answer the call to action using the hashtag EngageUplift on social media or you can do so in the comments down below. You can find more information on Uplift and all the resources that we provided for you in this video in the description box down below. My name is Kat Lazo, also known as TheeKatsMeoww. Till next time. Bye!