Sexual trauma is easier to cope with when you have support, just like a broken bone is easier to set with a cast. We’ve compiled a list of resources for sexual assault survivors, ranging from online group counseling to books, retreats, and peer support. This list includes resources for women, men, young adults, children, disabled, trans, non-binary, and LGBTQIA+ survivors, as well as survivors of color. Many of the websites linked here also have their own lists of resources, so you can find even more options with just a few clicks.

Avoidance, one of the most common manifestations of PTSD, often makes it difficult for many patients to tackle their trauma head-on, particularly if the trauma is acute or recent. But as daunting as it may be to pick up the phone and call a hotline, inquire about group therapy, or attend a trauma-informed yoga class, taking an active role in your recovery will be the best and most empowering thing you can do for yourself.

Hotlines and Call Centers

Anti-Violence Project
212-714-1141

The Anti-Violence Project (AVP) offers free, bilingual (English/Spanish), 24-hour, 365-day-a-year crisis intervention and support to LGBTQ and HIV-affected survivors of any type of violence, as well as to those who love and support survivors, including those who have lost a loved one to violence. Callers receive immediate crisis counseling and safety planning, as well as access to ongoing counseling, advocacy, and onsite legal services. AVP may also be able to accompany you to court or to the police.

ChildHelp
1-800-422-4453

ChildHelp runs the National Child Abuse Helpline, and they can be reached 24/7. They talk to people of all ages who have experienced parental abuse and can help you report instances of child abuse. They also provide resources for prevention, intervention, and treatment.

Darkness to Light
1-866-FOR-LIGHT (866-367-5444)

Darkness to Light offers local information and resources about sexual abuse. You can also text ‘LIGHT’ to 741741 for crisis support with a trained counselor. These services are 24/7, free of charge, confidential, and will be answered by a trained information and referral representative. Helpline availability varies according to state and call center. Darkness to Light also has resources for reporting child sex abuse and human trafficking.

Day One
800.214.4150

If you’re 24 years old or younger and have experienced sexual trauma and/or domestic violence, you can call Day One’s free and confidential hotline, available in English and Spanish, or text 646-535-3291 to ask for help and resources. They provide additional services for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender/gender non-conforming, queer, and questioning youth who are struggling with intimate partner abuse, as well as legal services.

If you live in New York, you can also use Day One's Direct Services Program, which provides free and confidential counseling, case management, and legal advice, information, and direct representation.

loveisrespect
1-866-331-9474

Loveisrespect is a project of the National Domestic Violence Hotline and Break the Cycle, and is a fantastic resource for advice and info on healthy dating. Its mission is to empower youth and young adults to prevent and end abusive relationships. Peer advocates can be reached 24/7 via phone, online chat, or text (“loveis” to 22522). They offer help for safety planning, support systems, self-care, abuse on campus, calling the police, documenting abuse, and obtaining a restraining order. They offer guidance for LGBTQ survivors and undocumented survivors as well.

The National Center for Victims of Crime
1-855-4VICTIM (1-855-484-2846)

The center’s VictimConnect Resource Center is a place for victims of any crime nationwide to learn about their rights and seek out resources, including legal aid, advocacy, and treatment.

National Domestic Violence Hotline
1-800-799-7233

The National Domestic violence hotline is free, confidential, and available 24/7/365 in English and Spanish. On the website, there’s a chat function that’s also available all day, every day, as well as a wealth of resources with info for state coalitions, counseling services, shelters, and legal aid. There’s also a library of articles about healthy relationships, boundaries, recognizing abuse, and talking to teens about domestic violence.

RAINN
800.656.HOPE (4673)

RAINN, the Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network, is the nation's largest anti-sexual violence organization and operates the National Sexual Assault Hotline, which is free, confidential, and available 24/7/365 in English and Spanish. RAINN works in partnership with more than 1,000 local sexual assault service providers across the country and operates the DoD Safe Helpline for the Department of Defense.

RAINN also carries out programs to prevent sexual violence, help survivors, and help bring perpetrators to justice. You can call RAINN for guidance and resources in crisis (though call 911 if it’s an emergency), after recent sexual trauma, or to talk about sexual trauma that happened long ago. They can help you find support groups, group therapy, individual counselors, legal aid, emergency shelter, medical attention/accompaniment, crime victim assistance advocacy, and a number of other services in your area. You can also chat online with a counselor at hotline.rainn.org.

Safe Horizon
1-800-621-HOPE (4673)

Safe Horizon has a free, 24/7/365, confidential national hotline in English and Spanish for domestic violence survivors; rape, incest, abuse, and sexual assault survivors; and victims of other violent crimes. Counselors are available to talk about your situation (whether it’s recent or not), as well as help you figure out the next steps, whether that’s in the form of counseling, legal aid, safety planning, or finding a shelter. They can also help you find in-person counseling, group therapy, legal aid, and other resources, and if you are based in New York, you can receive in-person services at their offices in Brooklyn and Harlem, by appointment.

Shelters, Counseling, and Support Resources


Abused Deaf Women’s Services

The Abused Deaf Women's Services (ADWAS) community links page offers a good list of services and centers all over the country to help deaf and/or deaf-blind people who have experienced abuse, as well as information about domestic violence, abuse, and recovery, as well as inspiring survivor stories.

ADWAS is based in Seattle, Washington, and if you’re a local, you can attend the center for all kinds of services, including short-term crisis counseling, ongoing individual/family therapy related to domestic violence and sexual assault, group counseling related to childhood sexual assault and domestic violence, psychosocial assessments and evaluation of sexual abuse of children, client advocacy and referrals. They also have a local crisis video call hotline, 24/7/365, which you can reach at 1-(206) 812-1001 or via email at hotline@adwas.org.

Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies

You can search for a qualified cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) provider, an evidence-based method for treating PTSD, using their search engine, which can help you find someone in your area. The website also has great information on these therapeutic approaches, so you can learn more about treatments that might appeal to you.

Domestic Shelters

Domestic Shelters may be the most comprehensive database for folks seeking shelter from domestic violence. They’ve verified information on shelters and domestic violence programs across the country. This free service can help if you or a friend is suffering from physical, emotional, psychological, or verbal abuse. They can help you find domestic violence programs based on your location, service, and language needs.

Other services include "24-hour hotlines, service listings, and helpful articles on domestic violence statistics, signs and cycles of abuse, housing services, emergency services, legal and financial services, support groups for women, children and families, and more."

National Center for PTSD

This is a web resource with excellent information on PTSD, including the most effective treatments and what they entail. Although it’s geared toward veterans, you don’t need to be a vet to use it.

National Organization of Sisters of Color Ending Sexual Assault

SCESA has an excellent resources page for women of color looking for treatment centers and organizations dedicated to serving sexual assault survivors near them. The site also offers music, film, and book recommendations. SCESA is an advocacy organization working on policy change, collaboration with other social justice movements, community awareness, and a number of other advocacy tactics.

Psychology Today

You can use the Psychology Today support group search to find sexual trauma support group therapy near you.

Tiwahe Glu Kini Pi

This is a mental, emotional, and spiritual health resource center for the Lakota nation, particularly for men, women, and children who have experienced trauma. They offer a number of different programs and services in service of Lakota traditions and wellness.

The Breathe Network

The Breathe Network connects sexual trauma survivors to practitioners who offer sliding-scale, trauma-informed, holistic healing arts and support, including acupuncture; massage and cranial-sacral massage; somatic therapy; sound healing; yoga, hypnotherapy; dance, art, music, and color therapy; feng shui; Rolfing; and EMDR.

They offer a range of information for survivors of sexual violence related to understanding how the holistic healing arts can facilitate healing. They also have a helpful list of emergency resources available both over the phone and online, as well as recommended organizations and books for those pursuing alternative healing arts to complement their trauma recovery. These resources also benefit those who support survivors, whether as friends and family, or as healing arts practitioners.

Somatic Therapies

SomaticExperiencing Trauma Institute

This site is a great resource for evidence-based studies about how trauma affects the brain and body, and for information on somatic (body-centered) therapy approaches to recovery. You can also use their directory to find somatic therapists specializing in trauma recovery.

Trauma Center at Justice Resource Institute

Founder and medical director of the Trauma Center at Justice Resource Institute, Bessel van der Kolk, is an internationally recognized researcher and practitioner of somatic-based therapy for trauma survivors. The center offers a number of outpatient medical services for clients seeking therapeutic treatment.

If you’re not in MA, you can use their directory to search out a somatic therapy provider near you. The Trauma Center’s website also has a treasure trove of trauma and somatic-approach recovery research and offers somatic therapy trainings for therapists, counselors, healers, and yoga teachers.

Trauma-Informed/Trauma-Sensitive Yoga

Exhale to Inhale

Exhale to Inhale empowers those affected by domestic violence and sexual assault to transform their lives. ETI employs the healing practice of trauma-informed yoga to empower survivors while helping communities develop skills and knowledge to support them. Exhale to Inhale provides free weekly yoga classes at domestic violence shelters and community centers in NY, CT, and LA. They also offer trauma-informed yoga teacher training.

Transcending Sexual Trauma Through Yoga

Zabie Yamasaki, founder of this organization, offers private and group yoga classes for sexual trauma survivors; an eight-week "yoga as healing series for survivors of sexual trauma," which can be done in-person or online; as well as trauma-informed yoga teacher training.

She is also known for her intensive and loving retreats, which are held all over the country. Her website has very helpful information about mindfulness, self-care, integration, and what exactly trauma-informed yoga is about and how it can help. Yamasaki’s Instagram is full of book recommendations, tips, and quotes for transcending trauma.

Trauma Center Trauma-Sensitive Yoga

This is David Emerson’s center for trauma-sensitive yoga, and the website offers a search function to help you find certified trauma-sensitive yoga facilitators worldwide. There are also links to resources, books, and research on this method of trauma treatment. TCTSY also offers trainings and a number of other events and workshops.

Animal Therapy for Trauma Survivors


Assistance Dogs International

Assistance Dogs International is a coalition of nonprofit assistance dog organizations that help individuals find a dog to match their needs.

Alliance of Therapy Dogs

Alliance of Therapy Dogs is a national therapy dog registry and can assist those in certifying their potential therapy dog.

EQUUSOMA Equine Facilitated Trauma Therapy

If you like horses, even if you’ve never touched one, this might be an interesting approach to take. (If nothing else, you get to hang out with a horse, after all). Inspired by the far-reaching branches of Dr. Peter Levine’s approach to somatic therapy and trauma recovery, EQUUSOMA works with human clients in equine-facilitated interventions to guide equine-based activities and facilitator interactions so that they don’t inadvertently overwhelm or retraumatize clients.

Horses have a complex nervous system, much like humans, and are very sensitive to their human partners, so working with horses allows the participants to be more aware of both their reactions and the horse’s. The idea is to stay with the experience; care for yourself and the animal; and integrate that compassion, healing, and self-awareness.

Freedom Farm Therapeutic Riding Center

While Freedom Farm doesn’t have a program specific to sexual trauma survivors, they have therapeutic riding programs. "Freedom Farm enriches lives by partnering with the unique attributes of the horse to improve mobility, build confidence, and encourage personal growth in children and adults with physical, mental and emotional challenges."

Pawsitivity

Pawsitivity is a nonprofit organization dedicated to rescuing dogs and training them as service dogs for people with PTSD and other conditions.

SheHerdPower Foundation

The SheHerdPower Foundation is dedicated to providing free equine-guided empowerment services to women survivors of sexual trauma. The programs are weekend-long experiences in which "participants engage in a variety of personal development and somatic empowerment experiences as a group, which includes on-the-ground immersion with horses. While the process occurs in a group setting, personal disclosure is not a requirement, and the process is highly supportive of personal evolution and growth."

Survivor Art and Art Therapy Sites


Art Therapy Blog

Art Therapy Blog is full of articles and resources for art therapy for adults and children, and specialized projects and research for a number of audiences, ranging from trauma to autism. If you’re interested in research and projects, you can try these yourself or with a counselor, therapist, or group.

Last Battle

Founded by Mary Ellen Mann, author of From Pain to Power: Overcoming Sexual Trauma and Reclaiming Your True Identity, Last Battle is a creative space for sexual trauma survivors to share their artwork, stories, and poems in the site’s gallery.

There is also a blog for inspiration and recovery, Mann’s keynote speeches and talks, and a page of "ideas for living well" filled with advice for advocacy, recovery, and support. The site has a Christian slant and uses the metaphor of the princess warrior to explore recovery, and also includes exercises and articles on meditation and women’s empowerment.

Online Chat and Online Peer Support


1in6

1in6 is a resource for men who have experienced unwanted or abusive sexual experiences. They offer recovery information for men, men’s stories of trauma and recovery, 24/7/365 online chat support with trained advocates through their website, and anonymous online support groups facilitated by a professional counselor. Support groups meet every Monday and Wednesday.

Forge (Trans)

Forge is a Milwaukee-based organization dedicated to advocating for and protecting the lives of transgender/non-binary people and their loved ones. If you are a trans survivor of sexual violence, domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, or hate violence, you can email AskFORGE@forge-forward.org or call their hotline at (414) 559-2123 for information, resources, and referrals to providers in your area. Forge’s website also offers a peer support listserv, online Writing to Heal courses, conferences, and workshops.

Male Survivor

Male Survivor is a collection of resources and articles for men who have experienced sexual trauma, as well as a forum for men to discuss trauma and recovery. Resources include a therapist directory to help find therapists who specialize in treating male survivors of sexual trauma; a support group directory; peer support guide; male survivor forum; resources directory; healing events; and the HopeHealingSupport Team, who are available by email to answer any questions survivors may have.

National Sexual Violence Resource Center

The NSVRC offers up-to-date research and resources on sexual-violence recovery, including news, projects, special collections, publications, and a library. They also offer a very helpful database for survivors seeking help in the form of individual or group counseling, support groups, community outreach, advocacy, and more.

"NSVRC enjoys a strong partnership with state, territorial, and tribal anti-sexual assault coalitions and national allied organizations. This online directory highlights those organizations and projects working to eliminate sexual violence." You can search by state to help find resources near you.

Protect Our Defenders

Protect Our Defenders (POD) is the only national organization solely dedicated to ending the epidemic of rape and sexual assault in the military and to combating a culture of pervasive misogyny, sexual harassment, and retribution against victims.

POD supports survivors of military sexual assault and sexual harassment, including service members, veterans, and civilians assaulted by members of the military. Resources include hotlines you can call, applications for free legal services, directories for local services, peer-to-peer support, resource libraries, and forums.

Survivorship: for survivors of ritual abuse, mind-control, and torture

This resource is not a replacement for therapy, but rather an online space for survivors of a very specific kind of sexual abuse or trauma to share and validate their experiences with each other as peers.

Survivorship has yearly conferences and video resources, and for membership access, which costs "$75 down to what you think you can pay," which will provide you with updates every other month with news of the organization, national events, and news articles for survivors. Two times per year, you will receive their journal, which contains many articles, poems, and artwork by survivors, therapists, family or friends of survivors, and other supporters. You will also be able to use the members-only section of the website.

Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests

SNAP is dedicated to supporting survivors who have been abused by priests or other religious figures like nuns, religion teachers, or ministers. The organization is run by volunteers who help survivors find therapists specializing in religious abuse and sexual abuse in their area, as well as assistance in reporting abusers and finding legal aid.

SNAP also has a number of group therapy chapters, and you can use their directory to find one near you. They also have annual conferences for you to check out and a collection of survivors’ stories and related news.

Retreats

Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health

Kripalu (Krih-PAH-loo) is a yoga and healing arts retreat center and school. While Kripalu as a whole is not dedicated to trauma recovery specifically, many of their retreat programs center on healing, depression, anxiety, mindfulness, body-awareness, trauma-informed yoga, self-care, and recovery.

If you don’t want to sign up for a full program, book an R&R retreat that allows you to attend a selection of spirituality talks, concerts and events, and yoga, meditation, and YogaDance classes at your leisure. You can also book massages, energy healing, Ayurvedic consultations, and many other healing sessions. The center is kitted out with great vegetarian food (with a couple of daily meat options), gym, sauna, and beautiful trails, and a labyrinth for walking meditations. Kripalu is located in The Berkshires, in Stockbridge, MA.

Sidhayatan: A Place of Siddhas

Siddhayatan Tirth & Spiritual Retreat is located in Windom, Texas, and offers a number of specialized retreats ranging from stress relief to a PTSD healing retreat. The retreat offers ashram living with home-cooked vegetarian food and lots of lovely nature for you to enjoy, in addition to the program. They use what’s called the Purnam Yoga System, developed by yogi Acharya Shree Yogeesh, which incorporates yoga, meditation, breathing, and spiritual practices meant to help you manage PTSD symptoms in conjunction with your regular therapy and/or medication.

Break the Silence Against Domestic Violence (BTS)

BTS offers an Annual Survivor Sister Retreat for women who are affected by domestic violence. The retreat is an opportunity to immerse yourself in activities, workshops, and classes focused on holistic approaches to healing, as well as to forge friendships and supportive relationships with other survivors.

This retreat best suits women who are not currently in an unhealthy relationship or suicidal. BTS suggests seeking crisis help first, and then attending the retreat when you are in a more stable place to begin a lifelong journey of loving awareness and healing.

The Refuge: A Healing Place

The Refuge offers a Rape-Related Trauma Treatment and Rehab Center for rape and sexual assault survivors. This residential treatment center, located in Florida, offers a number of therapeutic approaches to healing sexual trauma, including exposure therapy (specifically, recalling painful memories in a safe environment with a professional), interpersonal therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, and intensive family therapy.

Experiential therapy is also a large part of their approach and can include dramatic experiencing, hypnosis, art therapy, a ropes course, equine therapy, creative expression, group sharing, music therapy, and journaling. The Refuge is surrounded by beautiful nature, and in their spare time, clients are welcome to play sports, fish, hike, and enjoy the grounds.

Books


General Texts


Why Does He Do That? Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men by Lundy Bancroft

If you’ve ever known that a relationship didn’t feel right but you weren’t sure if it was abuse, then this could be helpful for you. Bancroft looks at the many types of abuse and the ways that the victim can be gaslit into thinking that they are somehow responsible or capable of changing the abuser’s behavior. (Amazon)

Writing Ourselves Whole: Using the Power of Your Own Creativity to Recover and Heal from Sexual Trauma by Jen Cross

This is a book of essays, encouragements, exercises, and stories for sexual trauma survivors who "want to risk writing a different story." Geared toward people who would like to write about their experiences without retraumatizing themselves, this book aims to help those who would like to use writing as a joyful and transformative healing tool. (Amazon)

The Mindfulness and Acceptance Workbook for Anxiety: A Guide to Breaking Free from Anxiety, Phobias, and Worry Using Acceptance and Commitment Therapy by John P. Forsythe and Georg H. Eifert

Using acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), this workbook will help you move through your anxiety and fear with awareness and without judgment. The book comes with bonus worksheets and guided mindfulness meditations. (Amazon)

Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence—from Domestic Abuse to Political Terror by Judith Herman

Judith Herman’s trauma research, particularly sexual trauma and healing, was groundbreaking when it was new on the scene in the 1990s and has remained relevant and insightful since. This is an excellent tool for understanding the social content of trauma; Herman shows parallels between the trauma of war and the trauma of childhood sexual abuse, and what people need in order to heal. (Amazon)

Shattered Assumptions: Towards a New Psychology of Trauma by Ronnie Janoff-Bulman

This is for the survivor who wants to understand how perceptions about the self, world, and other people are formed after trauma, and how to change them. Think of it as real-life applied psychology. (Amazon)

Surviving a Cyberstalker: How to Prevent and Survive Cyberabuse and Stalking by Alexis Moore

Moore, a survivor of domestic abuse and cyberstalking-turned-leading lawyer and cyberstalking authority, has written this practical guide to help people prevent and escape cyberabuse and cyberstalking. (Amazon)

The Mindful Way Through Anxiety: Break Free from Chronic Worry and Reclaim Your Life by Susan Orsillo and Lizabeth Roemer

This book uses clinically tested mindfulness practices to help readers meet their anxiety with clarity and compassion. There is also a helpful workbook you can purchase separately, and access to audio material through the website. (Amazon)

Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life by Marshall Rosenberg

Whether you’re afraid to tell people how you feel, or you tell people how you feel a little too vehemently, this book is helpful. Rosenberg explores relationships, needs, and practical communication techniques, as well as tips for understanding other people better. Using this guide, you can learn how to speak to yourself and others from a place of love, and how to have clearer and calmer conversations with everyone in your life. (Amazon)

Gender-Specific Books


The Courage to Heal: A Guide for Women Survivors of Sexual Abuse by Ellen Bass and Laura Davis

Often referred to as the bible of childhood sexual abuse recovery, this book is a manual of healing, much loved through all of its additions by survivors and therapists alike. The latest editions contain up-to-date research about trauma, healing tools and methodologies, a more diverse array of survivor voices, encouraging check-ins with survivors well into their recovery, and more. (Amazon)

The Dance of Anger: A Woman’s Guide to Changing the Patterns of Intimate Relationships by Harriet Lerner

This very popular guide is meant to help women navigate, process, and express their anger in healthy ways rather than repressing it, as society so often tells women to do. Lerner helps the reader recognize unhealthy relationship patterns, internal and interpersonal emotional patterns, and change them into a happier relationship with one’s self and others. (Amazon)

Victims No Longer: The Classic Guide for Men Recovering from Sexual Child Abuse by Mike Lew

This is one of the classic resources for male survivors of sexual abuse, now updated with current research on trauma and recovery, an examination of cultural attitudes toward male sexual abuse and incest survivors, practical and compassionate advice for healing, and personal narratives. (Amazon)

LGBTQIA-Specific Books

Queering Sexual Violence: Radical Voices from Within the Anti-Violence Movement by Jennifer Patterson

This is a collection of racially diverse voices across the gender spectrum from within the anti-violence movement. This book moves beyond dominant narratives of sexual violence and centers the experiences, and spotlights 37 deserving stories of trauma, activism, and empowerment. (Amazon)

The Queer and Transgender Resilience Workbook: Skills for Navigating Sexual Orientation and Gender Expression by Anneliese Singh

This workbook offers advice and exercises for the LGBTQI+ reader to work through the trauma of discrimination, violence/sexual violence, loss, family rejection, and more, and find healing, resilience, and confidence within themselves. (Amazon)

PoC-Specific Books

The Beginning and End of Rape: Confronting Sexual Violence in Native America by Sarah Deer

If it would be empowering for you to read a searing account of colonialism, how sex trafficking and abuse of Native women continues, and ways for the tribal nations to seek redress, then this is a great book for you. Deer is a powerful activist and writer addressing real, ongoing issues of sexual violence against native women and seeking solutions. (Amazon)

Decolonizing Trauma Work: Indigenous Stories and Strategies by Renee Linklater

By looking at colonization as the first wound, Linklater contextualizes native trauma and speaks with ten indigenous healthcare practitioners to discuss indigenous wellness, mental illness, and recovery. This book is full of practical measures for individuals and communities who have experienced trauma, and draws on indigenous cultural knowledge and worldview to inform ideas of healing, recovery, and wellness. (Amazon)

I Will Survive: The African-American Guide to Healing from Sexual Assault and Abuse by Lori S. Robinson and Julia A. Boyd

This self-help guide is intended as a resource for African-American survivors of sexual assault, offering resources, strategies for coping, prayers from Black spiritual leaders in a variety of traditions, and first-person accounts. (Amazon)

Mejor sola que mal acompañada: para la mujer golpeada / For the Latina in an Abusive Relationship by Myrna M. Zambrano

Zambrano has a lot of experience working in Latin communities and helping Latinas leave domestic violence situations and navigate prejudiced and unsympathetic police, documentation issues, need for translators, how to get to a shelter and protect yourself and your children, and what the church might say. This book is a practical and compassionate guide for surviving and leaving an abusive relationship. (Amazon)

Books About Reclaiming Your Sex Life

The Art of Healing from Sexual Trauma: Tending Body and Soul Through Creativity, Nature, and Intuition by Naomi Ardea

Ardea uses her own experience of childhood sexual trauma and her healing journey as a guide, developing a workbook for readers to experiment with their own healing through journaling, art therapy, exercises, and accessible self-care ideas. (Amazon)

Healing Sex: A Mind-Body Approach to Approaching Sexual Trauma by Staci Haines

This is a sex-positive, somatic approach toward sexual abuse and incest recovery, geared toward the reader who is ready to embrace sexual healing and reclaim their sex lives, whether they are single, partnered, heterosexual, or LGBTQ. This book teaches the reader that it’s OK to say "no" to unwanted sex, and "yes" to their own desires and needs, on their own terms. (Amazon)

The Sexual Healing Journey: A Guide for Survivors of Sexual Abuse by Wendy Maltz

This is a classic self-help book for men and women who survived sexual abuse and would like to reclaim their sex lives and sexuality. This book has exercises, advice, and stories to help readers enjoy safe, compassionate, loving sex. (Amazon)

Books About the Somatic Method and Yoga

Embodied Healing: Using Yoga to Recover from Trauma and Extreme Stress by Lisa Danylchuck

Danylchuck connects trauma theory and yogic philosophy and focuses on the foundations of yoga and their applications toward healing rather than just the physical forms of yoga. Reading this, you will also learn more about how the nervous system works and reacts to trauma and stress, and how you can affect the nervous system with breathwork, yoga, and other practices. (Amazon)

Overcoming Trauma through Yoga: Reclaiming Your Body by David Emerson and Elizabeth Hopper

This book explores a somatic approach by using trauma-sensitive yoga techniques to help survivors recover and reconnect with their bodies. Emerson is one of the current leading trauma-sensitive yoga researchers and trainers. (Amazon)

Trauma-Sensitive Yoga in Therapy: Bringing the Body into Treatment by David Emerson

Another great book from Emerson, this one more focused on how to use trauma-sensitive yoga to treat survivors, the research supporting the methods, and how they help. This is particularly useful if you’re the kind of person who wants to take a very informed, active role in your treatment or are considering becoming a trauma-sensitive yoga teacher or provider. (Amazon)

Waking the Tiger: Healing Trauma by Peter A. Levine with Ann Frederick

Dr. Peter Levine, founder of the SomaticExperiencing method of trauma therapy, walks the reader through the research and theories of his methods, as well as plenty of exercises for the reader to try on their own or in a therapeutic setting. Using body-based (somatic) approaches, Dr. Levine normalizes trauma responses and creates exercises to help heal them. (Amazon)

Deep Listening: A Healing Practice to Calm Your Body, Clear Your Mind, and Calm Your Heart by Jillian Pransky

This book, while not specifically for trauma survivors, focuses on how a yoga practice can help heal anxiety and stress using mindfulness, deep relaxation, and compassionate listening. (Amazon)

The Body Keeps Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma by Bessel van der Kolk

This has become a touchstone text for understanding trauma, its effects on the body, and methodologies of healing. Van der Kolk examines a number of evidence-based treatments for trauma recovery, ranging from expressive therapies to yoga, meditation to sports, all of which activate the brain’s natural neuroplasticity. (Amazon)

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