Trauma can have a profound, even devastating impact on an individual. Often, the responses traumatized individuals exhibit are pathologized. They are viewed as needing “treatment” and are identified as "sick" or “disturbed.” The truth is, the responses to trauma are normal responses given the extreme nature of their situation. Pathologizing the person or seeing the person as a problem hinders the successful integration of the trauma memories into their overall life story. We must recognize these responses are normal for their experience and are based on real physiological and emotional reactions in the body and mind of the individual to a traumatic event.
If trauma survivors normalize their responses to trauma, it increases the likelihood the individual will be open to explore their experiences, which in turn increases the opportunity for the individual to give language to their trauma. If they can give language to their trauma, they can begin the process of including the traumatic experience into their overall life story. The brain systems that handle self-awareness can begin to alter the bodily responses that feel so out of control and out of context. Finally, the individual can begin to rediscover their identity through giving language to their inner reality.
Helping individuals who have gone through trauma understand their responses are normal, and they are not alone in experiencing these responses, can help open the doors to the process of healing.
Having been a victim of severe childhood abuse, then a survivor and now LIVING THE FULLNESS of Christ in me. I do agree with most of what you are saying. In the begining i had no experience of what was "normal". But God showed me glimpses of some normalcy through other people. He also showed me that some of my actions and thoughts were not normal responses. Which caused me to ask why? You're right, i could not and had not put words to things i felt were wrong...But didnt know what. So what words and how was something i needed to learn. I didnt knlw emotions. Happy, sad, angrey etc and began through therapy to learn to identify them. Now that i have verbalized the yraums that happened in my life, put words to them. And identified how they affected my life. I am now set free from my past and have used it to help others. At first i griebed for the years of my life that i lost. What and who could i have been IF.....then God showed me who I AM! I took on His surmane when i became His child. I was able to totally forgive the people involved in my maltreatment and God did exacgly what He said He would do..... turn evil to good. So where i differ in your statement, which was right on. Is that our pasts, if allowed by those broken can be changed to good in our lives. To the point where i truly praise God that was a part of my life. Linda
10/13/2018 02:37:09 pm
Thank you for sharing your story. I completely agree with you about God's healing and redemption. In my posts, I have been describing the definitions and consequences of trauma, but I have not yet gotten to the discussion of healing from trauma. Again, thank you for courageously sharing your testimony so others will know healing is possible, and the source of that healing.
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Dr. Donna E. Lane is a Christian Counselor who specializes in trauma, grief, and loss, along with the depression and anxiety often resulting from these experiences. She has been a counselor since 1979, and has owned her practice since 1993. She is co-author of the internationally-acclaimed trauma treatment resource, Trauma Narrative Treatment, and the accompanying story, Gold Stone. She is also the co-author of Strength in Adversity, a Biblical study on walking through difficulty with Christ.