Early Childhood Trauma

Childhood abuse, includes verbal, emotional neglect/abuse, physical neglect/abuse and sexual violation.

As part of my healing journey and the ongoing realisation of the power of hypnosis, I finally released a “secret” that my unconscious mind had suppressed for many years. It took a couple of hypnosis sessions before the “inner me” felt safe enough to reveal a very frightened, violated little girl that lived in the deep recesses of my psyche…it was such a relief to finally understand where the roots of my fears and anxiety came from!

I have learned through my studies and research, when a traumatic, frightening experience cannot be adequately dealt with through the support and guidance of others, the unconscious mind has ways to “lock” this traumatic experience away in an attempt to “protect” you from the experience that was frightening and overwhelming…for many of us there is a “numbing” of feelings; unexplained emotional flashbacks to times of helplessness; emotional distress such as anger, anxiety and depressive episodes of hopelessness because the “root of the trauma” is hidden from your conscious awareness.

Trauma that has not been adequately resolved takes up “energy space” in your mind and body and contributes to problems with concentration, learning and memory, as well as your physical health.

I am particularly inspired by the insight and the amazing works of Jonice Webb and Dr. Alice Miller:

Dr. Alice Miller, a Swedish psychoanalyst has studied and written many books about the complex subject of childhood abuse.

Dr Alice Miller reports that “many adults are unable to remember their childhoods. These memories are repressed at a time when it is necessary for the child’s emotional survival to forget. To experience the pain of wounds inflicted by parents on whom the child is totally dependent is, in the child’s undeveloped mind, tantamount to death. And so the child learns not to feel – and eventually not to remember these hurts.

The repression often continues into adulthood, long after it has served it’s useful purpose of self-protection, and results in separation from the true self, denial of feelings, inability to attain intimacy with another person, and ultimately, depression for some”

Dr Alice Miller also talks about how a child’s humiliation, impotence and “bottled up” rage can manifest as adult illnesses such as cancer, strokes or debilitating conditions such as fibromyalgia.

It takes an enormous amount of courage for an adult survivor to begin to speak out and it is advisable to choose a very trusting person to begin the process of healing. Many families become defensive and disbelieving of adult survivors and for many, the journey of healing is private, assisted by a trusting enlightened compassionate witness, keeping a journal of your healing journey, and using your own bio-feedback systems in your body i.e. your thoughts, feelings and emotions.

There is a particular quote from one of Dr Alice Miller’s books, namely The Body Never Lies that speaks volumes about the “magic” our bodies can perform for us…both in protection and in healing!

The body is the guardian of the truth, our truth, because it carries the experience of our lifetime within our cells. The child who lives on inside us…the child who was once shamed, humiliated, abused – their bodies sustained the knowledge of the impotence they felt in childhood; they stored such knowledge in the cells within their bodies.

Once the Adult self has decided to find out the whole truth about itself, the body feels understood, respected and protected”

A very helpful book “The Courage to Heal” is written by Laura Davies and Ellen Davies offers you the validation of your traumatic experiences and inspires hope, strength and healing. You can actively participate using their journaling workbook or gain an understanding of how to reclaim your power through their reading option.

Childhood Emotional Neglect (CEN) by Jonice Webb

Jonice Webb writes extensively about Childhood Emotional Neglect (CEN)and the debilitating effects on many adults, who are out of touch with their emotions and struggle to understand why they feel empty and alone. Emotional neglect is so often overlooked as its effects are often overshadowed by more obvious mistreatment or abuse. In any case it goes unseen and unnoticed, while it does silent damage to people’s lives.

The definition of CEN: A parent’s failure to respond enough to the child’s emotional needs. People who grow up this way go forward into adulthood out of touch with their own emotions, feeling empty, alone and disconnected, and are baffled about what is wrong with them.

Despite the overwhelming body of research proving it, many people strongly resist the fact that their parents’ treatment of them in childhood had a profound effect upon who they are as adults. It is uncomfortable to blame our parents for the problems and issues that we experience in adulthood. It feels like letting ourselves off the hook. Some people consider it “whining.”

However, it is worthwhile to try to understand how your childhood affects you. Understanding is crucial to being able to have compassion for yourself and to conquering your adult struggles. You can have an understanding of how your parents’ mistakes affected or hurt you without going down that blame road to nowhere.

Once you see how your childhood affected you, you are freed up to hold yourself accountable as an adult. You, the adult, are responsible for your own decisions, mistakes, and choices. Own them. Be accountable for them. Learn from them, and move forward. No blame or guilt necessary.


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T.vd Walt

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