Do you have childhood experiences that make you feel upset or overwhelmed when you think about them? Do you struggle with feelings of shame, guilt, self-doubt, or mistrust in your daily interactions? If this feels like you, you probably suffer from childhood trauma.
Childhood traumas are like nightmares that haunt you in adulthood if you do not overcome them. Without early intervention, childhood trauma can adversely affect your mental health and social behavior. Therefore, you should seek counseling from a trauma therapist to help you identify, understand and manage the emotional scar.
A mental health therapist can help you with mental health issues. Click the button below to book your appointment.
What Is Childhood Trauma?
Childhood trauma refers to adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) that you witnessed or went through when you were between ages 0-17. Some traumatic events may include abuse, neglect, accidents, violence, serious illness, or the death of a loved one. Sadly, 20-48% of youths have experienced multiple trauma in their childhood. It is saddening because studies show that childhood trauma disrupts attachment, delays cognitive development, and impairs emotional regulation.
Causes of Childhood Trauma
As you grow up, you experience different events, some probably unique. Other events may have left you feeling disturbed, confused, overwhelmed, or anxious. Depending on the frequency, adversity, and coping ability, you may have developed trauma that affected your lifestyle. These events could be the cause of your childhood trauma. The leading causes of childhood trauma include:
- Bullying/ cyber harassment, social media harassment
- Chaotic or dysfunctional homes
- Domestic violence
- Parents undergoing separation or divorce
- Substance abuse
- Parent with a mental illness
- Death of a loved one
- Emotional, physical, and sexual abuse
- Separation from a parent or caregiver
- Stress caused by poverty
- Sudden and severe medical condition
- War and violence
Symptoms of Childhood Trauma in Adults
Understanding the signs and symptoms of childhood trauma will help determine if you need further intervention. The signs and symptoms are either emotional, physical, or behavioral.
|Emotional Symptoms||Physical Symptoms||Behavioral Symptoms|
Despair and hopelessness
|Poor sleeping patterns
Lack of energy
Inability to focus
Difficulty making decisions
You will trigger some of these symptoms when you visit certain places, meet some people, receive traumatizing news, or relive specific traumatic events. If not managed, childhood trauma can lead to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), job loss, or even suicidal thoughts.
Childhood trauma can lead to PTSD and long-life depression. Click the button below to book your appointment.
Managing Childhood Trauma in Adulthood
Getting over your childhood trauma does not happen overnight. Neither can you completely forget the ACEs. Thankfully, you can learn to cope with the symptoms and overcome them through therapy and counseling.
You can recover from PTSD resulting from childhood traumas on your own without external intervention, but it often takes time. In this case, you will have to discover self-help tools and tips that will help you feel better.
Sometimes, you will need professional help in your healing journey. Book a session with a trauma therapist today to start trauma therapy and counseling. The treatment may take 20-30 sessions over six months for you to recover.
Processing Childhood Trauma during Counseling
Processing childhood trauma involves resolving unpleasant thoughts, feelings, and actions that you suppressed or ignored while growing up. To recover from the traumatic events, you will go through three stages of trauma care during therapy.
Stage 1: Establishment of Safety
Childhood trauma makes you feel shameful, guilty, and unsafe. At this stage, mental health therapist will make you feel safe by:
- Creating a rapport,
- Assuring confidentiality,
- Encouraging you to open up
These strategies will help you feel calm, grounded, and safe. You will also manage to put a barrier between yourself and how you think about the traumatic events.
Stage 2: Remembrance and Mourning
This stage is more empowering as you will be confident to tell your story. At some point, you may break down. Mourning is an essential part of trauma recovery. At this stage, your therapist will take note of the 3 Es of your childhood trauma which is the:
- Event: what happened
- Experience: how did the event make you feel
- Effect: how the event affects you
When you are exposed to a traumatic event, how you experience it influences you.
Stage 3: Reconnection
Once you have mourned the childhood memory that destroyed your childhood, your therapist will help develop your new self. To achieve this, the therapist will help:
- Challenge your old beliefs
- Encourage you to devote more time to care for yourself; and
- Re-establish a sense of safety.
The goal is to let go of the memories, forgive yourself, and reconnect to your old self. In the end, your trauma should have receded as you focus on creating your own identity and intimacy.
Mental health therapy can help you with health restoration. Click the button below to book your appointment.
You may not recover fully from your trauma because, under stress, your childhood trauma may recur. If this happens, use the strategies you will learn during therapy to cope with it. While you can recover from trauma on your own, it is advisable to seek expert help. We are a team of licensed and professional doctors who provide trauma counseling from the comfort of your home.