“Trauma is specifically an event that overwhelms the central nervous system, altering the way we process and recall memories” (Bessel Van der Kolk). The traumatic events that have taken place in the past leave the person feeling pain, fear, and anxiety in the present as they might re-experience similar intense and discomforting physical sensations and emotions. Some might experience Post-traumatic stress disorder where one experiences intense anxiety, recurring flashbacks, difficulty sleeping, hopelessness, and other discomforting sensations, after the trauma has taken place. It is important to note that everyone experiences and reacts to trauma differently. It is crucial to work with a trauma-informed therapist if you are suffering from a traumatic event.
Therapy provides the following and much more:
- It strives to build a safe space where sitting with the therapist feels calming and supportive
- A place to explore the physical sensations and emotional pain that one might be holding after the traumatic event
- A secure space to unpack the narrative that one is telling themselves about the trauma that might be contributing the emotional pain
- People often develop defenses to protect themselves from further pain. Through therapy, these defenses are slowly worked through as they are preventing the person from feeling deeper emotions
- A supportive and non-judgmental space to slowly move towards the deeper hurt so that it can be tolerated to be processed, leading to transformations in one’s life