“You may have just been told by your partner that he or she was sexually abused in childhood. You may have been suspecting this for a while. The world, as you know it, is reeling, and worse, you may know, and even like, the perpetrator, if it was a family member.
Remember that you must see your partner’s disclosure in a positive light: she (for ease of reading, the feminine pronoun will be used from now on although this article applies as much to men as to women) is entrusting you with a very private part of her life. It may make her feel vulnerable, insecure and/or frightened. What should you do to honour that trust and help in the healing journey?”
I have seen this from all sides. Obviously, I’ve been the survivor, I’ve also been in dating relationships with other survivors in the past. I’ve watched good friends deal with someone they love disclosing their past abuse, and watched survivor friends go through the process of sharing their story with their partner. There’s nothing easy about it. Whether sharing it with a partner, or hearing it from your partner, it’s changes things between you, and if not handled well, it can end a relationship.
No one expects you to handle it perfectly, but if someone you care about has shared this with you, these are good things to keep in mind.