How To Cope with Childhood Trauma as an Adult

Growing up into an adult, you would usually learn to mature as an individual. Through one’s experiences growing up, most childhood concerns usually take a back seat to bigger things, such as career, family life, money, and relationships. However, childhood traumas have a way of haunting you even if these events happened many years back. These could resurface in the form of phobias, or irrational fears. These could also resurface in the form of bad dreams. In some cases, if the trauma was caused by abuse, then the problem could surface in one’s inability to trust and have meaningful relationships.

Coping with your childhood trauma would usually be a lengthy process of recovery and moving on. Here are a few things you should consider if you want to walk the path of healing.

Identify the source of your trauma. Most childhood traumas are sent to the deepest recesses of one’s memory. When you experience something bad, you would usually want to forget about it and deny that it ever happened. However, growing up to adulthood, you might have some irrational fears. For instance, people who have drowned or who have been in boating-related accidents might be afraid to swim or ride a boat. People who have had been in car crashes might be afraid whenever they ride automobiles.

The first step to coping with traumas is to identify the source of your trauma. Try to recall the things that had happened before, which are now causing you pain. If you clearly remember the source of pain, then the main task is to recognize it as the source of your present problems.

This might prove to be painful or troubling at first, especially if trauma was caused by abuse. However, you will need to focus on your trauma before being able to address it.

Overcome your trauma. Overcoming trauma usually involves different methods. Some would try desensitizing themselves until the traumatic experience seems insignificant. For instance, if you had a boating accident when you were young, you can try going on boating trips. Start gradually, so you don’t get shocked by the experience. After a while, you will be used to the experience and will no longer be afraid.

Let go. Traumas caused by abuse are often more difficult to overcome. If you had experienced abuse as a child, you might have problems trusting people. You might have problems trusting the opposite sex, for instance. This might result in difficulties maintaining relationships, leading to breakups and broken marriages. After recognizing this abuse as the source of your trauma, learn to forgive the person or persons who wronged you in the past. This might be difficult to do, in particular if the trauma has left a lot of emotional and physical scars. If you find it difficult to forgive, then perhaps you can simply acknowledge that what’s done is done, and that through time, your emotional wounds will heal.

Move on. The presence of traumatic events might hold one back from moving forward in life. You might get the feeling of being stuck in the past. You might have a mentality of always being the victim. Once you’ve recognized your trauma, and overcome it, learn how you can move on. Being able to face your fears will let you become more open to opportunities and new things.

Seek professional help. If you are still having difficulty addressing your childhood traumas, then you can approach a professional counselor for help. These professionals will be able to guide you through the things you need to do to overcome your past traumas.

Traumatic experiences are a part of life, whether you like it or not. Once you have gone past your traumas, stop being a victim. Move on with your life, and focus on the good things that you want to achieve.


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