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EVE Inc. offers mask advice to survivors of assault

Masks can cause trauma reactions to survivors

This is a handmade mask that was donated to EVE Inc, a Marietta organization that helps survivors of domestic and sexual assault. The organization provided some tips for survivors of these situations to be able to wear their masks comfortably without feeling the trauma from their past. (Photo Provided)

Many would agree wearing a mask is not exactly comfortable, but for domestic and sexual assault survivors, it can trigger strong, negative emotions.

EVE Inc., an organization in Marietta that helps men and women who may be in these situations, gave some tips for people who may have negative memories from their faces being covered.

Lahsley Mosor, sexual assault prevention coordinator, said a majority of their clients have been strangled.

“Survivors may have had something over their mouths such as a pillow, or sometimes abusers will use their own arm. It can interfere with their personal liberty in many ways,” she said. “When a survivor has to abide by the mask mandate, it can kind of give you almost a trauma reaction.”

Because the organization wants survivors to wear their masks and stay safe, it released some tips on how to overcome some of those traumatic feelings from a face covering.

“One of the biggest things we’ve read is to try to wear your mask at home. I even put essential oils inside your mask so when you put that on you can focus on the smell and not so much the covering,” Mosor said.

Focusing on one’s breathing and positive self-talk are some other ways that could help keep oneself grounded, she said.

Another tip is to use curbside pickup as much as possible to avoid going into stores.

“Non-trauma (people) have enough issues with the masks so when you start to really think about how adding that extra mask to a survivor really can really cause them to feel like that trauma and we obviously never want to re-victimize anybody but we still have to abide by the mask mandate,” Mosor said.

With stay-at-home orders and people having to quarantine, Mosor said the domestic violence situations have been different this year.

“People are not getting that opportunity like they used to to get out and make safety plans,” she said. “We can safety plan with them on the phone. I think before it just looked different, people just had more access to give us that call.”

All services are still available through EVE Inc. for men and women. The hotline is available 24/7 at 800-974-3111.

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