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Recently I read a blog post by Mary DeMuth regarding “The Mark” that is left on a person who has been sexually abused.  It was very well-written and insightful, and I would recommend checking it out at the link I’ve provided above.

As I read her post, I felt that the mark she referred to is sadly very real, and not just for those who’ve been sexually abused, but also for those who have experienced any type of abuse, trauma and/or neglect.  People who have experienced significant pain develop the marks of codependency.  Most people think that codependency is limited to an unhealthy relationship with an alcoholic or drug addict.  Not so, since the cause of codependency is not due to alcohol or illicit drugs being used by one party in the relationship, but rather the presence of abuse, trauma or neglect in the relationship.

If you have experienced any abuse, trauma, or neglect in the past or present, then you, to one degree or another, send out unconscious signals to others that make you a target for more abuse or unhealthy interactions.  That doesn’t mean that you cannot diminish the power of that “mark.”  If you pursue healing and proactively make changes in your life through various means, then you can significantly silence the mark.

What are some proactive changes you can and should make?

  • Pray for God’s healing and pray for your abuser
  • Seek the help of a Christian counselor
  • Go through a forgiveness process with the help of God and your Christian counselor
  • Learn how to set healthy boundaries with others in your life—especially your abuser
  • Read about codependency and/or your particular type of abuse
  • Give back in some form of ministry to other victims

This list is not exhaustive, but gives a good starting point and foundation for a victim of abuse, trauma and/or neglect.  If you think you carry the mark and you know me, let me know and I will pray for you and, if you would like, talk with you.  If you do not know me, please consider sharing your story with a caring, trustworthy professional or friend.  Remember, “We are only as sick as our secrets.”

“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”  Galatians 6:2 (NIV)

“He {God} heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”  Psalm 147:3 (NIV)

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Comments on: "The Invisible Mark that Everyone Can See" (5)

  1. Donna Bragdon said:

    Right on the mark, Beth! Thanks for being obedient to sharing what God places on your heart with so many others!

  2. Great post, Beth. Have you ever read “The Oath”? I know it is a completely different type of thing – but the “mark” you talked about reminds of the overall theme in the book.

    Again, great post. Keep ’em coming! 🙂

  3. I haven’t read “The Oath,” just lots of books on codependency. Those books don’t call it a “mark,” but they talk about the undeniable radar other codependents have in finding other codependents. Is “The Oath” by Frank Peretti?

  4. Hey! How are you guys? Thanks for listing my blog on your sidebar; that’s great!

  5. Yes, it’s by Frank Peretti. Wild book. But a good read.

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