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Suffering from the effects of unresolved trauma is much worse than suffering from the trauma itself.
I’ve been there. We’ve all been there. We can have a loving and caring family, happy memories, and still have childhood trauma.
Childhood trauma impacts everyone. It could develop at home or in school. We could remember the entire traumatic event or it could be dormant in our subconscious mind. Whether we recall what has caused us distress or not, the truth is crystal clear: we all suffer from trauma and we need to do our best to identify the signs.
If we don’t, our whole life will be disrupted. Hurt people, hurt people, so if we don’t understand the impact of our unresolved trauma, we will spend our life hurting—ourselves and others.
Here are seven warning signs you might be suffering from a deep mental wound:
1. Feeling alone, left out, or neglected. Trauma makes us feel as if the whole world is against us. The opposite of connection is protection. So while we might think that people have neglected us, the fact is we haven’t let them in from the beginning.
2. Feeling unworthy and unlovable. Traumatic events usually interfere with how we see ourselves. That said, feeling inadequate or ashamed results in believing that no one likes us or wants us.
3. Anger or depression. Those of us who haven’t worked on resolving their traumas might suffer from intense, frequent bouts of anger or depression. We keep swinging between feeling good and not good enough. Eventually this impacts everyone around us, including the ones we truly care about.
4. Blame. Working on our traumas requires looking within. But looking within takes courage and openness—two things we’re not always equipped with. When we don’t understand what has been inside us all along, it’s natural to blame the outer world for our misery and unhappiness.
5. Flashbacks. When we are hurt (and haven’t worked on reducing our pain), we keep reliving some aspects of the traumatic event. We know we have healed when we stop going back to the past.
6. Having suicidal thoughts. When we can’t put an end to our pain, we might think about putting an end to our life. The consequences of trauma are so intense and deep that we might hate our life or wish we weren’t born in the first place.
7. Experiencing physical symptoms. Traumas that stay in the mind eventually manifest in the body. Since our mind controls most of our body’s functions, we might feel sick, stressed, or develop illnesses that take a toll on our mental health.
If these symptoms ring true, you might be experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Recovery won’t be easy, but it’s possible. Find a therapist who can help you heal or take actions that will contribute to your overall well-being in the long-run.