Updated: Aug 6, 2018
I want to start with saying i'm sorry, i'm sorry something awful happened to you, that you had to deal with that.
And I want to say thank you, thank you for sticking with yourself and working toward recovery the fact that you are here, reading this shows you are putting yourself and your health in a position of knowing you deserve help and a happy life.
Trauma – we hear this word a lot now, I find though that we often don’t realise what we’ve been through is a trauma so I want to clear this up, a trauma does NOT have to be a life threatening event, it is an event or on-going situation that is upsetting, this does not have to mean upsetting to others, we have our own thresholds for coping.
Bullying, chaotic upbringings, domestic violence, abuse are traumatic but so are toxic relationships, losing someone you love, physical illness, experiencing a lot of criticism and having to walk on eggshells around others...
Experiencing intrusive memories or flashbacks and frequent nightmares are common signs of trauma, but so are feelings of anxiety and depression, feeling that you can’t trust people or your surroundings. There’s a lot of emphasis on diagnosing and labelling our experiences which is important to an extent but it is also ok to acknowledge your feelings and know that you don’t have to fit into a diagnostic criteria to be worthy of support or help. So I want to talk you through a few things that may help with coming to terms with the experiences you have had and moving on from them.
1) The first thing I want you to do is to forgive yourself for having these feelings, we are all different and just because someone else doesn’t view what happened to you as a trauma it does NOT mean it wasn’t traumatic for you.
2) Have your written anything down? I know it’s hard and probably the thought of writing any feelings down makes you want to run even more but just putting pen to paper targets the part of the brain that processes information- the part you have blocked due to the trauma, free writing is an extremely freeing experience, you don’t have to write about what happened, if you can write a bit about how you feel see if it gives you some head space.
3) Hold on to hope, there IS a way out, you CAN make changes and get yourself either to where you were before or a new place.
If you are in crisis or need help please call the Samaritans 116 123 from any phone, or take yourself to A and E in cases where you feel you might hurt yourself or another person. There are more resources on my Talk to me page.