Mapping the Maze: An Art Therapy Intervention Following Disclosure of Sexual Abuse

Contributed by a member of the RISE Community • May 10th, 2019

Disclosures of child sexual abuse create an immediate crisis within the child’s family unit. Reactions of non-offending caregivers in particular may prevent them from being emotionally available to respond immediately to the needs of the child victim. This article describes an art therapy intervention of visual mapping used in a support group of adult women to create order in the chaos that followed a disclosure of sexual abuse within their families. Mapping supported the women ’s needs to relate their trauma narratives to others, to identify and process powerful emotions, to develop coping skills, to identify past and future risks for further victimization, and to set goals for the future.

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