HOW A LACK OF STABILITY AND FOUNDATIONAL DEVELOPMENT IN CHILDHOOD LEADS TO A LIFE-LONG STRUGGLE IN ADULTHOOD.
Hi Love! I'm Morgan and I'm a childhood trauma survivor, certified trauma-informed coach, and the creator of Rising Warrior Collective, a safe community for survivors of childhood trauma to begin healing. If you're ready to take your healing to the next level, let's connect and talk about what it looks like to work 1:1.
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For some, the very thought of childhood draws up images of joy, innocence, play, optimism, and wonder. Childhood is the time in life when we are cared for, loved, and protected while we safely get to explore and uncover who we are and what lights us up. There is a sense of security that develops within us, knowing that we have the protection of our family watching out for us and ensuring safety and healthy development. This setting supports us in learning how to form healthy and safe relationships in the future – both with ourselves and others.
While this is the ideal childhood experience, it is far from the reality for many of us who experienced abuse, neglect, abandonment, and consistent trauma during our developmental years.
PULLING BACK THE CURTAIN AND IDENTIFYING EMOTIONAL TRAUMA AND THE FOUNDATIONAL DAMAGE IT CAN CAUSE.
As a society, sometimes it’s easier to identify physical trauma, abuse, and neglect then it is emotional trauma. It’s important that we begin pulling back the curtain and bringing awareness to emotional trauma because its equally damaging to a child’s development but often less understood by society, the abuser, and the child (later adult) experiencing it. It’s common for survivors of emotional abuse to live in denial and have a general lack of understanding of just how deeply their experiences impacted them and how they continue to impact nearly every area of their adult lives and relationships.
I spent the first two decades of my adult life struggling to navigate the affects of my emotional trauma. For many years, I lived in the shadow of shame while trying my hardest to hide just how deeply I struggled as an adult because I believed that there was something wrong with me or that I was broken. While at the same time I felt as if I had nothing to connect it to. It took me a long time to connect the dots and realize that it wasn’t me. I wasn’t broken, but I didn’t receive the tools I needed to build a healthy adult life for myself.
“So what you’ve actually got is traumatized children. When children are traumatized that affects how they feel about themselves, which is deeply ashamed because a child always believe that it is about himself. So if I am being hurt like this, I got to be a terrible person. Or.. if I was sexually abused, why didn’t I fight back, I must be a very weak person. So there’s a deep sense of shame.”~ Gabor Mate
WE LEARNED TO BUILD UP A TOLERANCE FOR THE ABNORMAL.
When we grow up consistently experiencing trauma, toxicity, and family dysfunction, it becomes challenging to identify what is normal and what’s not. We build up a tolerance as kids for the abnormal. So much so that by the time we get to adulthood, we look back and we find it hard to identify what parts were actually harmful to us.
Emotional abuse and neglect can show up in many ways for children experiencing developmental trauma. Identifying what it looked like for you as a child is the first step toward healing the affect it’s continuing to have on your adult life. Here are some ways it showed up in my childhood. By sharing my experiences, I hope to help you connect the dots around your own emotional trauma and how it may have looked in your childhood.
Because it can be so difficult and painful to identify and process what happened to us, we often step into our adult lives unaware or in denial. We either do everything we can to leave our past in the past or we fail to connect the dots between what happened and how we feel today. Either path commonly leads us to a similar place of adult struggle. For me, that place looked like:
It can be hard to take inventory of your life, but creating your own lists like this can help you connect the dots between your past and your present. When we see the present as a direct reflection of our developmental years, it becomes easier to understand why we’ve struggled so much in our adult lives. This can allow us to create room for self-compassion and empathy while clearing away some of the shame we’ve carried for so long.
While each of us deserves amends from the people who hurt us, the reality is many of us don’t get them. I want you to know that this does not have to impact your ability to heal and move forward into a healthy adult life full of hope, peace, possibility, and beautiful relationships. What happened to you is not your fault and even though they have been unable to take responsibility for their part doesn’t mean you have to continue to suffer. Awareness is the first step in facing our trauma and taking responsibility for our lives. I challenge you to start your own inventory so you can begin connecting the dots and healing your foundation.
“The lack of self-awareness in victims of chronic childhood trauma is sometimes so profound that they cannot recognize themselves in a mirror.”~ Bessel van der Kolk
If you are struggling to connect the dots between what happened to you and how it’s impacting your adult life so that you can finally begin to heal those wounds, I would love to support you. My 1:1 coaching container creates a compassionate, non-judgmental, and safe space that meets you right where you are today. From there we move at a pace that supports your life, goals, and visions for your unique and beautiful future, a future that can look anyway you CHOOSE.
Click here to book your free 1-hour discovery call.
You never know how one conversation could shift the direction of your life.
Lots of love ~ Morgan
October 19, 2022