Tips For Healing From Childhood Trauma

Childhood trauma is a terrible thing.  It forms so much of who we become as adults, good & bad.  Unfortunately usually there is much more bad than good.

The way to help minimize the bad is to heal.  To do this, you have to face the trauma, & that involves facing the emotions connected to it.  I know, this isn’t exactly fun but it’s quite necessary for healing.  Emotions demand to be dealt with, so not doing so will result in them manifesting in such toxic ways.  They will negatively affect your mental & physical health.  They can draw you to unhealthy relationships & circumstances.  That’s why it’s so much healthier to face trauma than to avoid doing so.

An effective way to do this that I have found is loosely based on Craig Hill’s “The Ancient Paths” book & seminars.  Start by looking at your life.  What areas are you consistently struggling with?  From there, you can ask God to show you what the root of the problem is.  When I have done this, God has shown me a memory, & usually it’s from childhood.  I focus on that memory, remembering everything about it that I can – what happened, where it happened, who was there, even more insignificant things like scents, sounds, who wore what clothing.  Remembering as much as possible makes it more real, which triggers many emotions.  Once I feel the emotions I tell God that in that situation I felt a certain way, like helpless, ashamed, stupid, ugly.  Then I ask Him to tell me if what I felt was right.  Was I right to feel the things I did?  I then listen for His response.  There really is healing & life in God’s word!  When He has spoken to me, I end up feeling so much better!  So much of the pain just disappears.

There is still a bit of work to do after this, however.  You will need to feel your feelings.  I mean really feel them.  Cry, get angry, yell… do whatever helps you to feel those emotions so you can get them out of you.  I often tell God just what I’m feeling.  He really can handle that & offer comfort during these painful times.  You may need to do this a few times to purge yourself completely of the emotions.  That depends on the trauma & how you as an individual feel about the situation.

When I first learned about all of this, I naively thought doing it once or twice would heal me completely.  Unfortunately healing from trauma is an ongoing process.  You have to heal from one incident at a time instead of all at once.  I can’t tell you it’s ever easy, but I can say that the more you do it, the easier it gets.  You get stronger as you heal, which enables you to face things better.  You also grow closer to God, because facing trauma in this manner makes you depend on Him for help.  It naturally strengthens your relationship.  It also helps you see God as He is, your Heavenly Father, rather than how you view your earthly parents.  So many abused children grow up seeing God as unreliable & untrustworthy as their earthly parents.  It’s natural, unfortunately.  Working on your healing in this way naturally changes your perspective on Him, & draws you closer to Him.

Also remember that doing this can be very emotionally draining.  It’s only natural that dealing with such negative & strong emotions would leave you feeling drained & a bit raw emotionally after.  When this happens, take good care of yourself.  Rest, be sure to eat healthy & relax as much as you can.

I know this all sounds intimidating, but truly, you can do it & you’ll be very glad you did!

6 Comments

Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Mental Health, Narcissism

6 responses to “Tips For Healing From Childhood Trauma

  1. “So many abused children grow up seeing God as unreliable & untrustworthy as their earthly parents.” — Right! That’s why I was staunchly agnostic, almost an atheist, for many years. But as I began to turn to the Lord for healing, everything in my life was changed — for the better! He really is a loving Abba Father.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. annealcroft

    “Start by looking at your life. What areas are you consistently struggling with? From there, you can ask God to show you what the root of the problem is.”

    Lately so many childhood memories surface that help to trace the root of C-PTSD that, now as an adult, seems to take on a life of its own if that makes sense. Noise, especially, triggers a visceral reaction that is becoming increasingly difficult to deal with. I live in a very rural area which is ordinarily peaceful. Anything that upsets that peace agitates and upsets to the point of feeling unsafe, vulnerable, and under attack. Loud car stereos, motorcycles, heavy engines, loud trucks, are like bombs going off.

    There is an intersection opposite my house that is actually a school bus turn around but an expanse of pavement draws people just like an expanse of water. No sooner do I sit on my porch hoping to have a peaceful supper, but somebody pulls up, engine running, radio going, because they need to check their emails. Tonight it was peaceful and quiet but how silly of me to think I could work in my garden peacefully. A neighbor about 1000 feet down the road must have been having a party; suddenly there was loud noise and thundering music, voices, and there was no tuning it out. It was extremely upsetting. What makes people think that everybody needs to hear their noise? I no longer care what people think of me when I speak up to defend the peace. We just don’t give peace a chance today. My right to peaceful enjoyment of my home is constantly breached by intruders. So there! Worst of it is, no doubt people who don’t know me probably think I’m crazy. And on the flip side of that, sometimes when I go out and politely ask people to either turn their engines off or their radio down, they become antagonistic, Last week there was an elderly couple in a brand new car stopped with the radio blaring so loud they couldn’t hear me when I asked them to turn it down! They said they couldn’t and became hostile! Sometimes people disgust me so much that I wish I lived in a teepee in the wilderness.

    Trying to track the root of why noise is so upsetting brings me back to the loud voices of my parents arguing, but moreover, my father’s loud, bellowing, hollering that was never ending. And that bellowing was often associated with his violent clubbing, not just beating. It was traumatizing.

    But there must be more at the root of the anxiety noise triggers and the extreme C-PTSD reaction it elicits, mostly because it makes me feel extremely vulnerable. What is most embarrassing, really, is that when anything out of the ordinary happens near my home that disturbs the peace, say if the neighbor’s dogs bark for over a half hour non-stop, when it reaches the point of becoming unbearable, I do not hesitate to call the police. Yet from what I know, it does not seem unusual for people with PTSD to be triggered by noise?

    Recently another flashback of being held at knife point when I lived in the city years ago helped me to realize why I often feel threatened when strangers lurk in front of my house. It took years to overcome the trauma of that. When I begin to revisit the memories God shows me, bit by bit — of all the biography that has created my biology, I realize that it is a miracle I am still alive. Thank God for His Goodness and Mercy.

    Thank you, Cynthia, for another great article! God bless you!

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    • That makes perfect sense. It’s a strange thing when you realize some odd reaction you have has a real root cause. It’s not that you’re crazy or weird- it’s that you’ve been through trauma. It’s a relief but also sad in a way finding out such things.

      Noise is an issue for me too. It’s so maddening because we live in such a noisy world. People seem to need noise to avoid thinking about whatever they’re running from. It sounds so incredibly annoying being out in what should be a quiet area, yet there is still a lot of noise!

      It makes total sense, your feeling vulnerable from noise after what you grew up with! Who wouldn’t feel that way?! Noise emotionally takes you back to some pretty horrible things… seems like a normal reaction under the circumstances.

      Held at knife point?! My word!! I’m impressed you could overcome that trauma at all! That had to be horrific! Thank God you’re still around & doing well!

      Thank you so very much! God bless you too! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      • annealcroft

        Cynthia, your compassion and validation are truly healing. This is another of your great articles that need to be revisited.

        So many more thoughts to share.

        “So many abused children grow up seeing God as unreliable & untrustworthy as their earthly parents.”

        Yes, this too has helped bring to the surface the truth that is so important for us to confront about our parents. Their inability to help their own children to understand God may be the fault of their own parents, but to go one step further, it is diabolical.

        Though I’ve always believed in God there was a time, especially during the 1970s when radical feminism became vogue and morality became sinful; in order to prove our worth as women we were to become as extremely radical as we possibly could be in order to defy all morality that the Bible teaches straight from the mouth of God. We were in ways bullied and shamed into challenging God as our culture proceeded to invent our own version of who we wanted God to be, some mythical deity that yielded to our whims, not a loving, Holy Spirit who demands of us obedience to His teachings in order to be free to live a life of holiness, and who makes explicitly clear that sin exists and is indeed punished though forgiven if repented.

        Where I am going with this is that if my parents had cared enough to have made God the center of our family life — a family that PRAYS (not plays) together, stays together, my self esteem would have flourished and my soul would have been honored, not willfully destroyed.

        If I had thought enough of myself, and had been taught the value of integrity that God’s Love inculcates, if I had been fortunate enough to have been brought up in a devoutly sincere Christian household, I am certain my life would have been very, very different and that now, looking back, aspirations which then seemed impossibly off limits to me would very well have become the fiber of my life. What becomes more evident with as time passes is how remarkably destructive my parents — both of them, were. And today, how remarkably and willfully evil my father truly is.

        Sometimes we just need to grieve what could have been, what never was, and look forward to the hope of what is to come. The reward of suffering is the development of our character as we draw close to the Sacred Heart of Christ.

        “I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living!” – Psalm 27: 13

        Happy Memorial Day! ❤

        Like

        • Thank you so much Anne! ❤

          It truly is diabolical that parents do that to their own children. Foolish people have no clue the devil is using them either.

          It's so hard to imagine what life would've been like with loving, functional & Christian parents, isn't it? How wonderful it could have been. It's a pity it wasn't & we do need to grieve that fact. It's a loss & losses must be grieved. Thank God He's not like our earthly parents!

          Like

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