We often marvel at the remarkable strength displayed by individuals who experienced maltreatment at a young age. This is their innate resilience. That resilience is actually composed of three key aspects: Recovery. Resistance. Reconfiguration. Last week we explored recovery as the foundation for resilience. Today we see how resistance fuels our ability to overcome adversity and thrive.
What is RESISTANCE?
Resistance is defined as the ability not to be affected by something. This means to especially not be affected adversely.
How does RESISTANCE relate to RESILIENCE?
Resistance is the second facet of resilience. In recovery, a victim of abuse or neglect reclaims their well-being. Resistance goes further. It buffers a child from the potential negative outcomes that would typically be associated with their trauma. Resistance personified is the child who learns to trust again… the child who doesn’t fall to addiction… the child who goes on to break generational cycles.
How can Advocates help with RESISTANCE?
Resistance is an unwavering determination to reclaim joy, trust, and normalcy. It is a child’s ability to emerge on the other side, stronger than before. Support networks are crucial. Validation, encouragement, and acknowledging progress provide the scaffolding that bolsters a child’s resistance. Advocates are uniquely placed in a child’s life to offer these things.
- Validation and Encouragement
Children need to express their emotions without judgment. A nurturing environment fosters their ability to open up. This facilitates the healing process. When children feel validated, they begin to rebuild their sense of self-worth and agency.
- Acknowledge Progress
Resilience is not a destination but a continuous journey. Celebrating small triumphs along the way reinforces the idea that progress is being made. Progress may be a child facing a fear, expressing emotions, or forming healthy relationships. When advocates acknowledge these accomplishments, children view themselves as capable and strong.
Advocates empower youth to rewrite their narratives, transforming their past experiences into a wellspring of strength. Our hope is that we are setting the stage for a future where these children are equipped to overcome challenges and embrace life’s opportunities.
YOU could be the advocate that a child is waiting for! Visit our website for more information on this meaningful volunteer opportunity in Henrico County.