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acts-of-bravery Bravery came as no surprise tonight.

Moments ago a helicopter circled above our neighborhood. A shout from a megaphone warned, “This is the local police department. We urge you to stay indoors as we are searching for a suspect who may be armed and dangerous.”

Are you kidding me?

We’re in the middleof a heat wave without air conditioning; it’s 10:30 p.m. at night, 83 degrees indoors, and I’m battening down the hatches. You bet, every last one of them.

I’m not sure what feels worse, taking deep breaths in this heat box or attempting to sleep with an armed suspect on the prowl.

So I’m staying awake with all the lights on, to write. At least you’re here with me, right?

Bravery isn’t easy. As a matter of fact, it’s not even on our radar until we’re facing an event that threatens us to the very core.

Look at the 3 things I instinctively did:

  • Opened my eyes, ears, and listened to the warning.
  • Did what I needed to do to feel safe.
  • Pursued connection. Please tell me you’re still with me.

Bravery gives us courage to keep going.

“Scared doesn’t always mean stop. Sometimes scared means I need to press through the fear until I get safe.”

It beyond frightening when the person we believed would protect us, is now the one causing us the most harm. Sexual betrayal is the most invasive type of harm. It’s pulling the sheets over our heads when were scared and realizing the one that’s armed to hurt us and dangerous, is under the sheets with us.

Now that’s fear and requires unordinary acts of bravery to help us get safe and find help.

3 Brave Acts to consider:

  • Face your fears. Avoid becoming frozen in the possibilities of what could happen. Look at what is. Keep your eyes and ears open. Listen to learn. Seek wise counsel from others who are trained in understanding and treating sexual integrity issues.
  • Listen to your gut. What do you need to feel safe? What do you need to be supported? Find a safe place to write down your actions steps. Every door and window I locked up became a brave action step that made me feel safer.
  • Don’t wait to get support and connection for yourself. Be with a safe other. Get help from someone that can help you walk the steps out as you’re experiencing the impact of betrayal trauma.

Welcome to the Brave One {B1} community. Start by taking these 3 steps to make yourself brave.

Bravely yours,
Dr. Sheri

With 22 years experience as a marriage and family therapist, Dr. Sheri specializes in individual, couples and family therapy at her private practice. She believes in looking at issues from a psychological, biological and spiritual perspective. She's the author of "Intimate Deception: Healing the Wounds of Sexual Betrayal," founder of the BraveOne Community and the Bravery After Betrayal Retreat... Continue Reading