What is childhood trauma and how therapy for childhood trauma can help you?

Nishita Ghosh

Nishita Ghosh

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When we say “childhood trauma”, it commonly implies – trauma related to childhood. But It is more than what it simply implies. Indeed childhood trauma generates from our childhood experiences, however, childhood trauma is not merely just a trauma.

More than two-thirds of children reported at least 1 traumatic event by age 16. Potentially traumatic events include: mundane

  • Psychological, physical, or sexual abuse
  • Community or school violence
  • Witnessing or experiencing domestic violence
  • National disasters or terrorism
  • Commercial sexual exploitation
  • Sudden or violent loss of a loved one
  • Refugee or war experiences
  • Military family-related stressors (e.g., deployment, parental loss, or injury)
  • Physical or sexual assault
  • Neglect
  • Serious accidents or life-threatening illness

Impact of trauma.

The impact of childhood trauma can go beyond our childhood which means that it could affect our adult life later. A large number of the majority do not want to talk about their childhood experiences as it is really traumatic to mental health. Also, the stigma that halts people to talk openly about how they feel as feelings are termed as “being shameful”. Do not get carried away with the stigmatized negativity if you have been bothered by people to shut up or hush for speaking out your mind and heart about what you’ve been through,

As we continue to live our lives, we stop by many phases and stages that either completely change us for better or worse. Whether it is childhood trauma or just trauma, people are more likely to be affected by their own mindset restricted for themselves to open up in mental health and in therapy. Being a trauma survivor is not easy. You have to deal with a lot of things that are unseen and are happening internally every day. Stigma has surrounded trauma survivors even though people are in recovery mode.

Surviving trauma in childhood impacts severely as they grow up. It’s important to recognize the signs of traumatic stress and its short- and long-term impact.

The signs of traumatic stress may be different in each child. Young children may react differently than older children.

Parenting and childhood trauma.

Understanding, processing, and coping with difficulties – even tragedies – is a natural part of a child’s development process. However, children can become stuck at times. An experience, or a series of experiences, can leave a child with an overwhelming sense of fear and loss, leading them to believe they have no safety or control over their lives.

These sentiments can grow so powerful for certain children that they interfere with their continued physical, emotional, social, or intellectual development. This is the result of childhood trauma. Trauma, if left unaddressed, can have long-term consequences on the quality and length of a person’s life. But there are things you can do to make your child less vulnerable to stress, identify trauma reactions, and receive the care you need to help your child heal.

Over time, as a parent you want to assist your children to master particular behaviors, attitudes, and actions that make them feel safe, in control, and hopeful. It takes continuous, ongoing efforts to help children deal with the stressors they confront on a daily basis, as it does with most things related to successful parenting. You want your children to be able to cope with challenging, unpredictable, and terrifying situations when they arise. This is referred to as resilience building.

Trauma Survivor and environment.

If you are a parent, you want to make sure that your child is growing up in a nurturing environment and learning morals and values. Sometimes, that is just not enough. Parenting styles has also a profound impact on children and stigma. Let alone parenting is not the only issue for trauma but it is one of the issues. Children who grow up in an abusive or domestic violence environment are more likely to have depression as they reach their adult phase or even worst suicidal thoughts as they find no empathy for life or themselves. Trauma could be in the form of mental abuse if not physical or both.

Other than parenting or parenting styles, in mental health, a trauma survivor suffers from bullies that could be in any form. Verbal bully or physical bully. Sometimes bullies are so aggressive that it leaves a child completely injured inside out that they no longer think that they should survive or live. Bully in schools, colleges, or in social media is very common but the impact on someone as a child facing bully is like breaking all 206 bones in the body as in spiritually. Sometimes even parents bully their own child but we cannot talk about parenting and their styles as the community is aggressive towards talking about how a parent should raise their child.

There are many worse cases in trauma survivors that are revolting and obnoxious that occur in a family than just mental abuse or physical such as – sexual abuse caused by a family relative/member, molestation, or child rape. These are very sensitive areas where a child experiences abuse and when they become adults they indulge with drug abuse, self-harming, manipulation, etc.

Stigma, Mental Health And Therapy.

There are people who body shame their own kids, skin color, or even criticize in whatever they do and that is justified as parenting which is a pitch-black blindfold. Children cannot express about their parents if they are not being treated well as people surrounding them would shame them or hush them telling them what parents do and are supposed to or most likely would ignore the child’s feelings in order to address why parents are not wrong and they do what they have to do. We all have mental health like physical health and children are the ones that need to be nurtured the right way so the future can be secured but yet childhood trauma is neglected.

Even divorces or separation breaks the children. Neglected children are most likely to develop depression, anxiety disorder, or personality disorders that can lead to bad adulthood. As a child, they wanna be loved, cared for, understood, heard, and nurtured. But if we fail to give them that, regardless of the morals and values that are being taught is just not enough.

Few may survive their traumas and move on to adult life but at some point it all resurfaces. And it is not easy to “just forget” or suppress to move on. In mental health where stigma lies, only therapy can help one to properly heal and live a happy life. Whether it is your child or yourself, therapy can help you lead the life you have always wanted. Consulting a child psychologist for therapy can get your child the help they require mentally if they do not openly communicate with you.

Benefits Of Therapy

If you are a trauma survivor in your adulthood, therapy is for you. You are no exception and going to therapy has no exceptions. It is understandable how as an adult, childhood trauma can leave you injured in ways however getting the help you need will help you make your move through your traumatic journey. For a trauma survivor working through the victim stage and feel like the wounds are healing and a sense of relief is possible but might take months or even years. As stigma continues its successful hideous journey in mental health, therapy is a sense of relief and defense against stigma for a trauma survivor.

  • A higher standard of living. Consider being rid of the symptoms you’re experiencing right now. You can live your life to the fullest without stigma, depression, anxiety, stress, or other psychological issues weighing you down.
  • Relationships are better. You’ll be better able to create and maintain healthy connections, and you’ll have more time for the people in your life when the symptoms of the illness aren’t sapping your strength.
  • Complications are less likely. Unfortunately, many persons who suffer from mental illness also acquire substance addictions; however, receiving mental health therapy reduces the likelihood of this happening. Dual diagnosis treatment can help with both problems, even if drugs or alcohol are already a problem.
  • Better results at school or at work. Concentration, creativity, absenteeism, productivity, and general performance are all tangible benefits of healthy mental health.
  • Medical complications are less likely to occur. Untreated mental illness leads to physical problems such as heart disease, ulcers, and colitis, as well as a weakened immune system. Receiving therapy reduces your likelihood of need certain medical treatments.
  • Encouragement and assistance. Individual counseling allows you to have a better understanding of yourself and your unique goals. Group therapy exposes you to people who are dealing with similar issues, which can help you see things from a different viewpoint. All of this provides you with the necessary strength to complete your recuperation.

Reminder!

It’s important to remember that requesting help is not a sign of weakness. You may feel vulnerable and unsure at first, but asking for support is critical. Good mental health care will put you on the road to recovery, allowing you to live your life to the fullest.