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  • Kristin Miller, PhD, Psychologist, DCEP

Bearing Witness To Heal Abuse

This is an exciting and hopeful time as people from all over the world are coming forward to bear witness about the abuse they have experienced. Of course, this is being met with fierce resistance as we challenge the old system of domination which uses any means, whether coercion, violation, or force to get what it wants. We can all be a part of uprooting this old system and building safe, cooperative, and compassionate systems that support everyone.


ACKNOWLEDGE the mean words, the new bruise, the child who is being yanked around by the parent, the adolescent who can’t get out of bed after a date, or the eyes of shame looking away.

ASK What happened??? Whether that question is directed towards yourself or your friend.

FEEL into the impact that this has in your body and support your friend through the process. Cross your hand over the chest and alternately tap on the upper arms like the wings of the butterfly. Hold, experience, and comfort yourself like you would a precious child who is distressed. Move through your feelings with the Butterfly Hug Video:

PROCESS the intense emotions of fight, flight, and freeze together with a few rounds of tapping. When there is a threat the body always tries to protect you and sometimes needs a little help to re-set and re-balance again.

Try the Trauma Tapping Technique Video:

RESPOND by speaking the truth, setting limits, and getting help. Reach out to your local domestic abuse shelter or rape crisis center, or the national helplines.

TEACH new ways of relating that are kind, consensual, cooperative, and supportive in meeting the needs of all who participate.

BEAR WITNESS for all who have suffered from abuse. We are all in this together and we can all play a part in changing how we relate to another.

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