Everyone experiences trauma differently, therefore symptoms may vary from one person to another. Psychological trauma can happen to anyone regardless of age, race or socioeconomic background. The effects of trauma are far reaching, in fact, research shows that Psychological trauma that occurs in childhood can affect people well into adulthood. So while the symptoms do vary there are some common patterns that show up among survivors of childhood trauma. If you’re concerned about yourself or a loved one, here are some indicators to look for.
PSYCHOLOGICAL TRAUMA: CREATING A FALSE SELF
Children who are abused or neglected often try to adopt personality traits and behaviors that they believe will make their caregivers happy. While this may help children anticipate and occasionally avoid subsequent episodes of maltreatment, the practice can have harmful effects in adulthood. If you’ve experienced childhood trauma or any other mental health disorder, you may have buried your emotions. As an adult, you may have difficulty presenting your authentic self to the world, fearing that people won’t accept you for who you really are.
TRAUMA COUNSELING: OVERCOMING A VICTIM MINDSET
Children who grow up in unstable homes receive the message early on that the world is not a safe place and that they have no control over their environment. This mentality can easily persist into adulthood without the proper trauma counseling. If you struggle with a victim mindset, think of yourself as a survivor instead. As an adult, you have more control over your life than you did as a child. Remember, you are more intelligent, more capable, and more resourceful than you realize.
HOW CHILDHOOD TRAUMA AFFECTS ADULT RELATIONSHIPS
Children who did not form healthy attachments to caregivers because of trauma often have difficulty developing healthy relationships as adults. Survivors of emotional trauma often feel numb or have problems with regulating their emotions and therefore struggle to give and receive love. They may be vulnerable to unhealthy relationship dynamics, even as adults because they tend to shut down or tune out when they’re being mistreated.
RISKY OR SELF-DESTRUCTIVE BEHAVIORS
Children and teens who experience psychological trauma may engage in impulsive, risky, self-destructive behaviors such as driving at high speeds or using drugs and alcohol. These behaviors can continue into adulthood. Children who feel abandoned may go on to abandon themselves, making poor choices and neglecting self-care.
COMPREHENSIVE CHILDHOOD TRAUMA TREATMENT
If you or a loved one has experienced psychological trauma in childhood, remember you are not alone and recovery is possible. At Ridgeview Institute, we offer comprehensive trauma treatment that includes inpatient services, partial hospitalization, and intensive outpatient therapy. We work together to create a treatment plan that is individualized and as unique as you are. Call us today for a free assessment so together we can determine how Ridgeview can help.