Does God Really Care About Child Abuse Survivors?
Many people are unaware of the holiday of Sukkot. This Jewish holiday starts on the fifth day after Yom Kippur and lasts for seven days. This year Sukkot begins at sunset tonight (October 17, 2005).
Like any other holiday, Sukkot can be a time of year that survivors of childhood abuse (emotional, physical and sexual abuse) may have a difficult time.
If you know someone who is a survivor of childhood abuse, it might be a good idea to check up on them a few times over the holidays. Make sure survivors have invitations to meals. If they say no, it is important to let them know they can always change their mind and come at the last minute.
The holidays often mean that families get together, routines are changed, there is also the added stress of cleaning and preparing meals. These issues alone can be extremely stress producing. Unfortunately the reality is that there are parents who are already inclined to use their children as an outlet for emotions and urges. They are even more likely to do so when under the pressure of increased anxiety. Many survivors of childhood abuse report that they were abuse became more intense around and over holidays.This is a reminder that you are not alone, that the feelings you might be experiencing are perfectly natural and normal. If you are having a difficult time, it's important for you to find a trusted friend to talk to.
Sukkot is the time of year that we try to remember the protection God gave to the Jewish people during the forty years they spent travelling in the desert. This is also a time of year that survivors of childhood abuse may have angry feelings at God for not protecting them. Please feel free to use this space to share your thoughts and feelings.
Also see: Surviving The High Holidays: Jewish Survivors of Incest and Childhood Sexual Abuse