Digital Seminar

The Role of Shame in Sexual Abuse in Women

Kathy Steele, MN, CS
1 Hour 14 Minutes
Nov 18, 2021
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Digital Seminar
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The central role of shame in women who have been sexually abused will be explored, including the experience of body shame. We will examine the dynamics of shame in sexual abuse, and cultural messages that increase and maintain shame around sex and the body. A practical integration of cognitive, emotional, relational and somatic interventions to resolve shame will be discussed.


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Program Information

Access for Self-Study (Non-Interactive)

Access never expires for this product.


  1. Analyze the functions and effects of shame in women who have been sexually abused.
  2. Determine how cultural, religious and social beliefs about sex and women’s bodies can exacerbate shame following sexual abuse.
  3. Assess the experience of body shame in sexual abuse, including the fusion of beliefs, emotions and body sensations.
  4. Employ at least two approaches to diminish body shame related to sexual abuse.
  5. Analyze the four defensive scripts described in the compass of shame.
  6. Employ at least three cognitive, three emotional, and three somatic interventions to diminish chronic shame.


  • The role of shame in trauma-related disorders and sexual abuse in women
  • The specific issues of sexual abuse that promote shame in women: secrecy, power differentials, threats, relational betrayal, body as the source of trauma, helplessness, and fear with immobilization
  • The effects of shame: body hatred, re-victimization, relational disconnection, self-disgust, depression, self-harm, and suicidality
  • Recognizing and working with defences against shame
  • How to approach shame
  • Relational interventions
  • Cognitive interventions
  • Somatic interventions

Target Audience

  • Psychotherapists
  • Counsellors
  • IAPT practitioners
  • Social Workers
  • Psychologists
  • Therapists
  • Case Managers
  • Addiction Counsellors
  • Nurses
  • Psychiatrists
  • GPs
  • Other Mental Health Professionals

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