6 episodes

Thru the Undertow is the podcast for parents, caregivers, and advocates of victims of child sexual abuse.


The mission of Thru the Undertow is to provide a place of support, education, and information for those who seek to assist and advocate for victims of child sexual abuse, assault and trafficking while bringing more awareness to the general public regarding these heinous crimes against children.

Thru the Undertow Nicole Lowell

    • Health & Fitness

Thru the Undertow is the podcast for parents, caregivers, and advocates of victims of child sexual abuse.


The mission of Thru the Undertow is to provide a place of support, education, and information for those who seek to assist and advocate for victims of child sexual abuse, assault and trafficking while bringing more awareness to the general public regarding these heinous crimes against children.

    Ep 202 - Therapeutic Coaching W/ Marissa F. Cohen

    Ep 202 - Therapeutic Coaching W/ Marissa F. Cohen

    Welcome back to Thru the Undertow. I’m your host Nicole Lowell. I am back with another
    important episode today. As a reminder, I will be sharing content and trigger warnings for these
    episodes so that you can decide if this is something you can listen to right now.
    Content Warning - sexual abuse, rape, male sexual assault, military sexual assault, toxic relationships, child abuse, kill, drugs, promiscuity, alcohol abuse, picking of skin and hair, verbal/psychological abuse between parents, vicarious trauma
    On today’s episode, I was joined by Marissa F. Cohen. I met her through a support group for
    parents of sexually abused children on Facebook. After doing more research, I learned more
    about her and knew I wanted to bring her on the show so that she could share her expertise with
    you all.
    After struggling with her own journey of abuse, Marissa wanted to help as many people as
    possible through their abuse journeys with the books she created. In her books she shares her
    stories and the stories of others who have suffered abuse with a focus on the healing aspect. If
    you don’t address and work through the abuse, it can become very dangerous. Marissa aims to
    provide a manual to people in this situation so that they can understand how to work through
    their trauma and heal.
    Marissa is also a healing coach and she works with victims to find healing through various
    techniques. She shares tips today for how to spot red flags when it comes to abusers, how to
    talk to your kids about consent, using code words, offering safety and comfort to children that
    have been abused, vicarious trauma, and so much more. Marissa has a wealth of knowledge to
    share on the topic and I am so happy she joined me on the show today.
    As always, I am here to listen and help how I can. Feel free to reach out with any feedback or
    questions you have about the show. Please rate and review the podcast on your platform of
    choice and share with those you think may benefit from hearing our message.
    Until next time,
    1:56 - Why Marissa decided to create her books
    3:16 - What the Breaking Through The Silence series is about
    4:28 - The impact of not addressing abuse at the child level
    5:21 - Why children shouldn’t be forced to hug family members when they aren’t comfortable
    6:33 - Not enough people talk about the abuse men suffer through
    8:02 - Anybody can be an offender
    9:53 - What Marissa does as a healing coach
    11:19 - The Emotional Abuse philosophy Marissa uses with her clients
    12:35 - How abusers use “D.A.R.V.O.” and what the acronym stands for
    14: 35 -Why abusers chose their targets; it’s not about the person, it’s about control
    16:22 - Five ways that we excuse abuse
    19:20 - Behavior changes seen in children that are abused
    21:24 - Children’s books that help children conceptualize what consent is
    23:54 - Ways to talk to your kids to let them know what is and isn’t okay
    25: 31 - Code words can be a great tool for helping children communicate what’s going on with
    26:57 - Safety and comfort are the most important things a parent can offer when a child has
    been abused
    32:47 - How social media has affected our society
    35:37 - Being aggressive and abrasive to your kids doesn’t make your kids stronger or more
    37:01 - What coaching looks like with Marissa
    41:24 - What vicarious trauma is and why so many parents experience it
    Resources/Links to information discussed:
    Get Marissa’s free ebook to learn the 3 signs of a toxic relationship at her website - https://marissafayecohen.com
    -Mention you found her on Thru the Undertow
    Follow Marissa on Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/marissafcohen/
    Follow Marissa on...

    • 46 min
    Ep 201 - The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

    Ep 201 - The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

    Welcome back to Thru the Undertow. I’m your host Nicole Lowell. I am sorry for my absence, life has been happening. Hopefully, this episode will provide some additional context to our ongoing journey toward healing. As always, going forward I will try and provide all episodes with content and trigger warnings so you can decide if now is the time for you to listen to that episode or not. We all step forward at different paces and it’s okay to not be ready to hear some of what needs to be said.
    TW/CW: sexual abuse, seizures, assault, hidden memories, forced control through drugs, rape. Similar content might also be present. Please don’t listen alone if you have triggers such as these listed.
    On today’s episode, I’ll be diving into the good, the bad, and the ugly of my and my children’s lives over the past year including how the pandemic has greatly affected those with past abuse and traumas. The good sides include my son finding a therapist he loves working with; I’ll discuss why having the right therapist for you or your family can make or break the hurdle of long-term therapy. Other good things: the use of medical marijuana and its ability to curb the intensity of my son's trauma seizures, beginning ketamine treatments, and possible TMS therapy. It’s important to remember though, healing is a roller coaster, not a straight line. But I’m proud of my son and the hard work he’s putting in to overcome.
    Also today, updates on my daughter include how different people can be more stuck in their trauma than others, as is the case with her. I’ll dive into her revictimization, poor coping mechanisms, difficulties with time-dilation perception, histrionics, school difficulties, and suicide attempts. Everyone deals with trauma in their own way and my son and daughter are no different: both had their own experiences, both have their own traumas, and both are being handled in their own ways. All I can do is support them as best I can.
    On notes of self-reflection today: brain fog and how all this has made me a list maker/taker, booking all these appointments for my children while managing self-care time, and finding ways to set my own personal boundaries. Updates on how my work/life balance has shifted in the last few years because of what my kids have been through, my kids' ongoing battles with DID, as well as the difficulties I’ve faced in obtaining proper mental health care services in the state of Arizona will also be delved into this episode. Lastly, I’ll be providing an update on our family issues in Texas.
    As always, I am here to listen and help how I can. I’m happy to provide resources and research where I can. Please reach out with any feedback or questions you have about the show, especially with your own experiences with healthcare provider systems in your local area so we can compare notes and maybe help you find better solutions. Please rate and review the podcast on your platform of choice and share with those you think may benefit from hearing our message.
    Until next time,
    2:10 - What’s coming up on the show
    2:58 - What The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly is about
    3:43 - An update on what’s been going on in our journey
    5:36 - Finding the right therapist for your child
    6:06 - The problem with treating trauma seizures
    8:55 - Recovery from trauma isn’t a straight line. It’s more like a roller coaster
    9:45 - My daughters coping mechanisms and NMT results
    13:44 - Finding the balance of healthy contact vs. what victims might look for
    14:30 - The histrionics of children that have been abused
    17: 36 - Sometimes feeling better isn’t possible
    18:36 - One of the most difficult things as a parent is coming to terms with the thought that your child could attempt to commit suicide and there’s nothing you can do
    21:02 - The importance of self-care for parents
    24:02 - Telling the...

    • 1 hr 27 min
    Ep 104 - One of Many with Melinda Prince

    Ep 104 - One of Many with Melinda Prince

    TTU: Episode 104 – One of Many with Melinda Prince Show
    Episode Summary

    Hello and welcome to Thru the Undertow. This week’s episode is
    our One of Many series where we interview parents that are raising survivors.
    Today’s guest is Melinda Prince. Please note: Episode was recorded in April (reference
    to Sexual Assault Awareness Month). Also, Melinda was at home when we
    interviewed so you might hear some background noise indicative of that.
    Guest Bio

    Prince is a mom who’s family has been going through a difficult journey, and
    who also began a Facebook support group for parents whose children were
    sexually abused.

    Ab*se, R*pe, D*mestic Vi*lence, S*xual ass*alt, PTSD, fl*shback, verb*l ab*se,
    phys*cal ab*se, r*pe k*t, sex off*nder, p*role bo*rd, vict*m imp*ct stat*ment

    points of interest:

    01:07 –
    Thank you, Melinda for joining us.

    02:15 – Who

    03:40 – How
    long was abuse going on for?

    04:09 – One
    piece of the puzzle vs the whole picture

    06:15 – Melinda’s
    daughter’s relationship with her dad changed.

    08:04 – Oh
    that makes sense now.

    08:39 –
    Affects every kid differently.

    08:51 – What
    happened when Melinda’s daughter disclosed.

    10:23 – Melinda
    called her friend a Guardian Ad Litem

    11:02 – Went
    to the police to have daughter and son both give statements. Melinda was
    allowed to be present.

    12:40 –
    Melinda’s daughter held her head in shame. Melinda’s son, an emotional eater,
    would disclose some information then request a snack. It was very uncomfortable
    for him.
    13:40 – Case
    was handed over to a separate county do to multiple assaults and bio-dad lived
    in county case was referred to.

    13:45 –
    Melinda spoke with the criminal investigator to express concerns over the
    justice system in smaller rural towns (like where she and ex resided). Criminal
    investigator assured her that she would keep an eye on things. She was amazing.
    15:11 – Dad
    was released on his own recognizance. Melinda was concerned dad would take kids
    and run.

    16:20 –
    Melinda got a call from the prosecutor’s office wanting more information. Melinda
    had to take daughter and son for forensic interviews (she was not present for
    these). She also had to take her daughter for a rape kit. Her daughter was 12.
    18:10 – Dad
    was arrested at that point.

    19:01 –
    Prosecutor called to tell Melinda that he wanted to offer dad a plea deal. **BACK
    UP - The county doesn’t have a grand jury for felony crimes where charges were
    officially filed. So in order to carry the case over to trial they had to have
    a pre-trial hearing that would open daughter up to questioning. Daughter
    20:38 - Judge
    overseeing the hearing was first day on the bench. He found there was enough
    evidence to hold it over for a trial.

    21:00 – **FORWARD
    TO – The Prosecutor called to tell Melinda he wanted to offer dad a plea deal
    of 120 DAYS in the sex offender assessment unit. Told her he was going to do it
    whether Melinda agreed or not. The kids might not be good witnesses. Melinda
    was adamantly against it because the prosecutor had to drop off the part of the
    charges that said WITH A CHILD.
    23:21 –
    Melinda asked her lawyer friend if there was anything they could...

    • 1 hr 20 min
    Ep 103 - Truckers Against Trafficking

    Ep 103 - Truckers Against Trafficking

    TTU: Episode 103 - Truckers Against Trafficking with
    Helen Hofer Show Notes
    Episode Summary
    Hello and welcome to Thru the Undertow. This week’s episode is
    an interview with Helen Hofer from Truckers Against Trafficking. We discuss how
    this amazing organization came to be and the great things they are doing to
    help in the fight against trafficking.
    Guest Bio
    Truckers Against Trafficking is an organization created to
    educate, equip, empower, and mobilize members of the trucking, bus and energy
    industries to combat human trafficking. It began
    as an initiative of Chapter 61 Ministries in 2009 but became its own 501c3 in
    Helen Hofer is the Director of the Freedom Driver’s
    Project at Truckers Against Trafficking. As such, she utilizes the first-of-its-kind mobile exhibit to
    educate audiences across the US about the realities of trafficking and how the
    trucking and bus industries are driving change in this area. She has managed
    trailer and event logistics for over 140 events in 40 states hosted by
    companies, state agencies, associations and community organizations. She is
    also the Salesforce Administrator, where she co-leads their team to full Salesforce
    adoption. Helen joined Truckers Against Trafficking in 2015.


    br*nding, as*ault, s*xu*l ab*se, pr*st*tution


    points of interest:

    01:00 – Welcome

    01:09 –
    Helen Hofer is the Freedom Driver’s Project Director for TAT. She manages
    outreach and events. While she previously had no experience in the trucking
    industry, Helen did have experience in the anti-trafficking movement.
    01:46 –
    Truckers Against Trafficking works specifically with the trucking industry including
    the bus industry and the oil and gas industry and newly with wind and solar to
    train CDL drivers to recognize and report suspected instances of human
    trafficking to the National Trafficking Hotline.
    02:37 – TAT
    has free industry specific training videos along with wallet cards, posters,
    and other training materials to give out to drivers.

    02:57 –
    TAT’s mission is to educate, empower, equip, and mobilize members of the
    trucking, bus, and energy industries to combat human trafficking as a part of
    their everyday jobs. We do that through saturating the industries with our
    materials, training law enforcement, and partnering with the industry to help move
    their mission forward.
    04:08 – TAT
    works with motorcoach transit, but also school bus drivers.

    05:13 – How
    Truckers Against Trafficking came about.

    06:51 – The
    level of impact that truckers can have on this issue.

    07:45 –
    Truckers are trained to more frequently observe and report as opposed to
    intervene directly. Collecting as much information as possible without
    interacting, if possible. They are also trained to look for certain signs of
    trafficking such as branding, eye contact, minor involved, other individuals
    10:45 –
    Calling the National Trafficking Hotline can allow the hotline to take down
    details and connect potential victims with law enforcement, advocates, and
    11:05 –
    TAT’s primary tools and resources are their free training videos available on
    their website. The trucking video is on the home page. Others are located
    through their programs tab. Wallet cards also have detailed information...

    • 1 hr
    Ep 101 - Her Side of the Story

    Ep 101 - Her Side of the Story

    Ep 101 – Her Side of the Story – Show Notes
    Episode Summary:
    Hello and welcome to Thru the Undertow. I’m your host Nicole Lowell. This week’s episode is Her Side of the Story, so come join us as we wade Thru the Undertow.
    Thank you so much for joining us today on our premiere episode of Thru the Undertow. (music fade out) For those of you who don’t know, thru the undertow is a podcast that hopes to provide a place of support, education and information for those who seek to assist and advocate for victims of child sexual trauma.
    In the coming weeks you’ll hear about different healing and diagnostic tools that can be used for survivors that have experienced trauma. There will also be episodes dedicated to helping navigate the legal system. What happens once you’ve discovered your child is a victim? Other episodes will be more focused on how parents can heal along with their children when faced with this unimaginable discovery.
    While this particular podcast is definitely geared towards parents and those directly involved with children who were victims, I believe that many of the topics will be helpful to a wide range audience. I hope you’ll join us.
    Because of the nature of the show we will provide trigger warnings and content warnings on each episode page on our website. That can be found at www.thrutheundertow.com. That’s www dot thru t-h-r-u the undertow dot com. See the latest episodes on our home page, or as time goes on, click on the Episode link to take you to a more comprehensive list.
    As I said previously, I’m your host Nicole Lowell. Today’s episode is titled Her Side of the Story which is actually my side of the story, because I’m not just your host, I’m the creator of this podcast, and I’m a mother who discovered that her children were severely sexually abused by their father. This episode is my story.
    TW/CW: Childhood sex*al ab*se, tr*ffick*ng, m*lest*tion, child p*rnogr*phy, trauma, trauma responses, alt*rs
    Timecode points of interest:
    1:35 – Today’s episode is Her Side of the Story
    1:49 – Let me introduce you to my family
    2:48 – My story begins 7 years ago
    3:45 – A call from the Sheriff
    4:54 – Arrived home to so many police cars
    7:06 – My husband was arrested
    10:59 – My husband takes a plea deal
    12:04 – It was difficult when he went to prison
    17:19 – My kids had struggles after their dad went to prison
    18:32 – I started to have doubts about my husband’s “innocence”
    20:50 - I tried reconnecting with my family, but it went badly
    24:20 – My son calls to discuss dreams he’s having. It’s the final piece of the puzzle
    27:30 – Disclosure came in levels. Things happened to sister, too. Therapy wasn’t working for a reason
    29:51 – Daughter now discloses
    31:27 – DA decides not to prosecute
    35:00 – What’s been happening with my children since disclosure
    36:28 – Covid impacts my children
    39:16 – Their father abused my children from their birth until he went to prison. My children were impacted greatly due to the duration and severity of the abuse.
    44:06 – My daughter has an NMT assessment (Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics Assessment). It’s an amazing tool.
    45:47 – How I look at guilt.
    55:20 – The situation isn’t just traumatizing to my kids, it’s also traumatizing to me, too.
    1:00:12 – I started this podcast because of how commonplace sexual abuse is in children.
    1:01:24 – Let’s talk – future episode topics.
    Resources/Links to information discussed:
    www.neurosequential.com – for more information about the NM Network, the...

    • 1 hr 3 min
    Ep 102 - All Things Dissociation

    Ep 102 - All Things Dissociation

    Ep 102 – All Things Dissociation with Dr. Christian Vincent
    Episode Summary:
    Hello and welcome to Thru the Undertow. This week’s episode is All Things Dissociation with Dr. Christian Vincent. Today’s episode will be diving into the complex world of Dissociative Disorders.  
    Guest Bio:
    Dr. Christian Vincent is Clinical Director at Iris Healing Center. Dr. Christian Vincent has a passion for the the treatment of trauma and dissociative disorders. Her clinical work is informed by an extensive knowledge of depth psychology, where soul and psyche come together for deep healing and transformation.
    She received a Masters in Counseling Psychology and Doctorate in Depth Psychology with specialization in psychotherapy from Pacifica Graduate Institute.
    Her areas of research include dissociative identity disorder, complicated grief, and the demon lover complex.
    Dr. Vincent completed her traineeship at Community Counseling Center of Southern Nevada where she worked extensively with individuals and facilitated groups for clients in recovery from alcohol and drug addiction, anger management, and dual diagnosis.
    She completed her internship at Coldwater Counseling Center in Studio City where she treated a diverse population of clients from a depth psychological approach, including dream tending, sand tray therapy, guided imagery exercises, and spiritual exploration.
    As a member of the Iris treatment team, Dr. Vincent works with individual clients and facilitates groups at the residential and IOP program. She invites clients to explore addiction and recovery from a place which integrates soul and psyche into their journey toward wholeness. For more information about Iris Healing www.irishealing.com
    TW/CW: d*mon, trauma, ab*se, s*xual ab*se, r*tual ab*se, alt*r
    Timecode points of interest:
    00:42 – Nothing that we say should be taken as any form of diagnosing. We are here for educational and informational purposes only.
    01:13 – What is Depth Psychology?
    01:39 – Carl Jung and Pierre Janet were forefathers in terms of research of dissociation.
    03:06 – What’s an example of neurotypical dissociation? Driving and daydreaming.
    04:10 – Dissociation is a coping mechanism.
    05:27 – Types of Dissociative disorders
    05:56 – Dissociative Fugue
    06:54 - Depersonalization and Derealization
    07:53 – Treatment options for Dissociative Disorders separate from DID. Things like EMDR and brainspotting
    09:32 – People can avoid therapy because they don’t want to rehash the trauma, but nowadays there are new therapeutic methods where they don’t have to.
    10:48 – Therapy is extremely personal, and you need to be comfortable with your therapist to make progress.
    15:51 – When looking for a therapist for Dissociative Disorders is there anything in particular as far as training goes to look for? Internal Family Systems training and Comprehensive Resource Model training. Great resource to find one who is trained: the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation www.isst-d.org
    18:00 – There’s a disconnect between doctors and insurance and trying to find specialty trained mental health professionals who will take your insurance. You can look into a Single Case Agreement if the professional doesn’t currently take your insurance. We’ll try to do an episode on insurance in the future.
    19:40 – Dr. C talks about her experience with DID, and how having a mom with DID influenced her to go into the field she is in today. Dr. C references her thesis (a...

    • 1 hr 1 min

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