The Impact Of Child Sexual Abuse On Becoming a Parent

Transcript (with creative licence to make it a bit easier for the reader to follow)

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Transcript Begins—

Welcome to the Meant To Rise Podcast.

A podcast dedicated to the victims and survivors of child sexual abuse. 

If you have a story get in contact with us let our host Romecca Sawers and let her guide you through the process in telling your story.

Thanks, this week also to our sponsor Tullawong Properties.

If you looking to invest in property in the Sunshine Coast Region of Queensland. Then get onto

Now on with our show and our host Romecca Sawers.

Susan Pryor she is our guest today and we will briefly do a quick interview with Suzan and her journey to empowerment.

We have a few questions to go over so we really hope that this benefits our audience, each and every one of you out there, who may be on your journey to being a survivor after child sexual abuse.  

May this be an encouragement to you.

So, thank you Suzan once again for joining us.

Thank you for having me.

You’re welcome, all right great, so do you want to tell us a bit about yourself just quickly, what you know, if you wanted to as much as you want to, what you do currently and where you’re from.

Okay so I’m from Sunshine Coast and I work at one of the hospitals nearby and I have two children.

One of the children has got cardiac issues which is ongoing and then I’ve got my husband and myself.

Awesome thank you, so with your journey I guess we can obviously state that you are a survivor of child sexual abuse.


And so, when you were starting to think about seeking support what was happening for you in that time of your life, when did you know what was happening, and what made you

decide to seek support.

So, I’d had my first child with my husband, and it was a lot to do with having her, I felt like I’d been violated again, like everything had just gone, I had nothing left in me.

Just everyone continuously wanting my body and not knowing where to go, because I didn’t know how to treat it after I’d had my first child, how to look after myself basically.

So, I was lost for a while there and because I was also brought up with abuse, physically and

mentally, when it got to the stage to actually start raising my child I

found I just couldn’t bring myself to bathe her.

So, my mind just shut down, I just couldn’t step into that space, I had to ask my husband, I felt ashamed and dirty that, with what was going on.

So, from that my husband said to me, I think you might need some help, and I was like what for, I have no idea what for, I seemed to be doing all right.

It was his way of seeing things, he thought hang on this isn’t normal, compared to what he’d seen with other people raising their children.

I thought to myself, okay I’ll go and get help, so my first step was to go to a counselor on the Sunshine Coast who dealt with sexual abuse and thought that that was the way to go.

Yeah well that’s, sorry, I didn’t mean to cut you off there.

I didn’t think they could help me. Yep.

So, I went through a couple of steps with them and I thought okay we got rid of a

little bit of it that’s fine so then I thought right I can do this on my own I’m right I’m okay.

Got a few years down the track bang hit me again, that’s all right maybe that wasn’t

the right person to see so I went and seen a counselor then after that I thought right, I could do this.

Then I started to have to try and provide for this child as well, which I found very

hard because not knowing how to love myself or do anything for myself it was all about other people taking control of me.

I found that hard, so then I’m back at the doctors again to get a referral back to the counselors and backwards and forwards I went.

 Then I had my second daughter, about four years later, and because she was so sick, I then thought you know everything that came up from the past just came up plus more and I thought right, I thought I’d dealt with all this and tried to push it under, didn’t know, didn’t basically know how to fix things so I was just constantly going and trying to get somebody to fix it for me.

Thinking that was the best way to do it, but that didn’t seem to work either so a lot of running around over the years.

My first turnaround was when I touched base with a place called Adult Child Abuse down in, Sydney I think, where their main centre is, they’ve basically changed to Brave Hearts now, 

So, I’ve got a little bit of information from there, saying hang on a minute the actual counselors that you need to see need to have trauma related illnesses involved,

So, it can’t be just any counselor to go and see, and I went ah! no wonder they haven’t been getting it.

I’ve been seeing the wrong ones I’ve just been going to a normal counsellor, thinking that was the right thing to do.

mm-hmm and yeah they were helping but there was more to it.

So, your saying that you needed someone more professional someone who dealt with the specific trials you had dealt with.


So, you have come such a long way and congratulations to you for your big, you know you’re first, that first big step and it was I guess such a wonderful thing that your partner at the time had noticed that and that you saw it.

 Yes, you know maybe it is something, that there is something, that needs to be addressed and that was making you, leading you to parent your daughter or not being able to bathe her, obviously there was something there that you…


So that was fantastic and that was wonderful for him to be able to pick that out for you and like I said congratulations to you on your first big step.

So when, so as you’ve gone through your journey and been seeking that support and when you finally found the correct people who were, who specialized in what you needed with the trauma,  what have you found along the way that you have gained that has benefited you like you said, mentally and physically.

Yes, each time I look back now and I can see that each individual step I took was probably the right one at that time in my life the thing was that even with Brave Hearts they only deal with one trauma related stuff whereas I had multiple going on.


So even they couldn’t really help me to the full extent that I needed


I met a lady who said to me she is a facial kinesiologist.

kinesiologist yeah.

Yeah and she said to me that there was a program that she had her partner had designed and want to see if I could go through it with her and see how I go and that’s called

enhances awareness program.

Her name was Rosie and at that stage I was ready to basically just not even be on this earth.

I didn’t want to be here at all

It was the day that I’d spoken to her

I went into work I was going to say goodbye to everybody and because I felt so different, I just felt so different I didn’t know where to go and I felt like there was no one out

there to help me.

So, I thought it was best not to be here and so my plan was to go in and say goodbye

I had everything set up and ready to go and then she told me about the program.

I thought to myself, you know what it’s come your way, maybe you should try this first.

So, I tried it and I have never looked back

I’m actually, I’ve gone, that was, it took me a long time to do the course, a long time I mean like it took me over six months to do the course and I now realize you know that in that time I had made some choices and on I realize now I’ve got some gifts from what I had been through as a child.

So, I am now working with Women’s and Families on the Sunshine Coast and empowering women so much, that to give them a voice and to make them realize that they’re important, and make them realize that, it’s not that we don’t know how to look after ourselves it’s that we’ve never been taught to look after ourselves.

So don’t feel scared to take that first step to start because when I started the enhances awareness program I didn’t realize that at the time it actually came with a mentor and each process that I went through in stages of my life I had to report back to my mentor and he had actually helped me to make decisions to move forward.

I thought, okay with we’re not alone now, cuz all this time I felt like I was alone

Yeah, and now I’ve gone on to do another course through the enhances awareness program which is with another lady called Rosie and it’s called happiness lifestyle and that’s a 10-week course.

 That’s fantastic so we’re, sorry, that’s fantastic so it’s obviously helped you so much with just even having that accountability yeah having somebody there just to speak with so that’s really fantastic.

 So, who is your biggest supporter today would you say, and you know I just definitely want to say first or ask how are you feeling are you okay at the moment like to continue on I do I want to make sure you are ok?

Yeah, I’m all good, things that I found over time that I have as gifts is that I’m resilient.

I’ve got, you know, the ability to pick other people up around me that no one else can

realize like we’re survivors>

You want to run for the hills get behind me, I know which way to go quickest.

Where I work you know I’ve got the girls back, so I’ve got their support so it’s just we find

skills out of what we’ve been through.

It takes a while to realize that and you know, I just think it’s great that I’ve got the chance to work with all these women that come into my life and I can help them to look after themselves now.

Absolutely it gives you that sense of, you get that sense of purpose.

Congratulations to you and you know I am sure that you are a great benefit to these young ladies and these women who come and how you connect with through your work, so you know that’s amazing.

So, who do you keep around…,

Sorry I still go through a lot of this stuff each day to work on myself yeah, it’s an ongoing process.


I get stronger and stronger by it.

Yeah absolutely it’s so important that we take care of ourselves and with our last question who do you keep around you to encourage your journey of empowerment, as you make your way through that you step-by-step.

I know you did mention you have your co-workers and you bring your mentors is there anybody else?

Yeah Just people positive people who have the same care and passion to work for the best outcome in life you know that’s basically it.

Absolutely, and would you recommend Meant To Rise to anyone if you came across anyone who was…

Oh yeah yep even the chat that we had that day was just so good to be able to understand okay I’m where I need to be for now you know and not push myself, to be able to understand it’s a slow process and there’s others out there you know.

Absolutely we’re not alone.

Not alone and that’s the biggest thing right isn’t it and that’s where we come in and we just say that it’s We BELIEVE You, We HEAR You and We SUPPORT You, because the biggest thing is knowing that we’re not alone and there are many more of us out there and you know and congratulations to you.

I wanted to again thank you so much for taking the time and being so brave and resilient as you are and you know I just want to encourage you to continue to, to continue to be amazing and climbing those, and just taking every step, climbing those mountains and achieving all that you desire in your life so just thank you so much Suzan thank you for joining us and we look forward to future interviews with you and hearing more about the amazing achievements that you are all the things that you were achieving in your life as you’re walking in and that journey of becoming empowered and more empowered every day after child sexual abuse so thank you.

Know worries I say to my husband, I keep putting this box around my face and

I say to him watch this space it’s going to get better.

Love it, so thank you everyone.

We hope that you’ve enjoyed and have been able to take away something very you know positive for yourself and may this be like I said in the beginning.

May it be an encouragement to come out and seek support and find us and we hope to hear from you soon.

One step one step as always as always, a good step just you know it’s a step forward.

So, all the best!

End of Transcript—


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