acts-of-braveryBravery came as no surprise tonight.

Moments ago a helicopter circled above our neighborhood. A shout from a megaphone warned, “This is the local police department. We urge you to stay indoors as we are searching for a suspect who may be armed and dangerous.”

Are you kidding me?

We’re in the middleof a heat wave without air conditioning; it’s 10:30 p.m. at night, 83 degrees indoors, and I’m battening down the hatches. You bet, every last one of them.

I’m not sure what feels worse, taking deep breaths in this heat box or attempting to sleep with an armed suspect on the prowl.

So I’m staying awake with all the lights on, to write. At least you’re here with me, right?

Bravery isn’t easy. As a matter of fact, it’s not even on our radar until we’re facing an event that threatens us to the very core.

Look at the 3 things I instinctively did:

  • Opened my eyes, ears, and listened to the warning.
  • Did what I needed to do to feel safe.
  • Pursued connection. Please tell me you’re still with me.

Bravery gives us courage to keep going.

“Scared doesn’t always mean stop. Sometimes scared means I need to press through the fear until I get safe.”

It beyond frightening when the person we believed would protect us, is now the one causing us the most harm. Sexual betrayal is the most invasive type of harm. It’s pulling the sheets over our heads when were scared and realizing the one that’s armed to hurt us and dangerous, is under the sheets with us.

Now that’s fear and requires unordinary acts of bravery to help us get safe and find help.

3 Brave Acts to consider:

  • Face your fears. Avoid becoming frozen in the possibilities of what could happen. Look at what is. Keep your eyes and ears open. Listen to learn. Seek wise counsel from others who are trained in understanding and treating sexual integrity issues.
  • Listen to your gut. What do you need to feel safe? What do you need to be supported? Find a safe place to write down your actions steps. Every door and window I locked up became a brave action step that made me feel safer.
  • Don’t wait to get support and connection for yourself. Be with a safe other. Get help from someone that can help you walk the steps out as you’re experiencing the impact of betrayal trauma.

Welcome to the Brave One {B1} community. Start by taking these 3 steps to make yourself brave.

Bravely yours,
Dr. Sheri

4 replies added

  1. sherrisa October 11, 2016 Reply

    This article has help me to remember what we need not to forget. Thank you very much for caring.

    • Dr. Sheri Keffer October 12, 2016 Reply

      Welcome Sherrisa – I do care. It’s amazing how many of us question our gut and just need to be reminded that it’s okay to listen to our bodies, pause, and get quiet enough to hear ourselves think. When we’re betrayed our trust is breached. We didn’t see what was happening around us. We wonder how we missed the signs. Sexual betrayal impacted me deeply. I lost my way and missed the signs because the person who betrayed me was lying and hiding things from me. Learning how to listen to the signals in my body and ask myself, “Is this a trigger from an earlier situation or something that is happening right now?” helped me make good choices about what I needed to get safe and sane again. Trusting our gut is part of how we learn to restore trust in ourselves again. Bravely yours, Dr. Sheri

  2. Diane D October 17, 2016 Reply

    I learned about you today through a divine appointment with Dr. D.F. I am a survivor of recent betrayal coupled with incredible spiritual warfare. Dr. F mentioned you, your amazing works, and God (for some strange reason) compelled me to see who you were and what you had shared. I love what you’ve offered here and if I may be so bold, I’d love to be part of your B1 community. It’s only with HIM that I’ll make it through this.

    May God’s blessings shower onto you abundantly as your provide care to others…


    • Dr. Sheri Keffer February 2, 2018 Reply

      Hi Diane,

      I’m so glad you’ve come to our B1 community. When I got your post today….I smiled because just this morning I was reading from one of my all time favorite Psalms. I tell others…..”You know when it’s one of my all time favorite inspirations because it makes it’s way onto my refrigerator.” I put it in that place where I can see it a lot. I got over how it added crazy splashes of color to my faux stainless steel. These words are food to me. They give me hope and remind me of truths, even when I absolutely don’t feel it.

      I am so sorry about your recent betrayal discovery. Heartbreaking. I deeply understand the impact of your words and I hope we can offer you support. What a striking chain of seemingly serendipitous moments that I believe reflect the fingerprints of El RoiThe God Who Sees Me. In my book Intimate Deception: Healing the Wounds of Sexual Betrayal I introduce El Roi, the One who gets where we are at, see us and surrounds us with help even when we least expect it. Check this out.
      Psalm 139 New International Version (NIV)

      1 You have searched me, Lord,
      and you know me.
      2 You know when I sit and when I rise;
      you perceive my thoughts from afar.
      3 You discern my going out and my lying down;
      you are familiar with all my ways.
      4 Before a word is on my tongue
      you, Lord, know it completely.
      5 You hem me in behind and before,
      and you lay your hand upon me.

      6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
      too lofty for me to attain.

      When the psalmist says, “You hem me in behind and before and you lay your hand upon me,” they are actually describing ancient Hebrew word pictures for “hem in” which means to be closely surrounded, huddled around or wrapped within support like when a city is under siege. The next phrase in Hebrew “behind and before” means to “press into” or “compress closely” as if a troop is tightening their position together when going to war. The idea here is we’re in a critical battle and God’s on every side, encircling us: “You’ve got my back….my sides,” and “You’re going ahead of me.” No wonder this particular Psalms brought me comfort in the midst of the twists and turns surrounding my sexual betrayal. Most importantly, I needed to know I wasn’t alone.

      Stay hemmed in Brave One…we’re standing with you,

      Dr. Sheri

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