Some of us have big T Trauma. Some of us also have ordinary trauma. Some remember what happened. Some have blocked out the memories yet we sense there is something fundamentally wrong with us.
Big T Trauma is easy to identify. War. First responders. Car accidents. Violence. Unexpected death. Physical and sexual abuse. We clearly see how these experiences are traumatizing and understand how living in fear can affect someone throughout their life.
Emotional attunement is the experience of feeling that someone understands us, sees the whole of us, and is on our side. We feel connected, known and valued.
Emotional neglect is partially a misattunement between parents and children. For reasons of their own, often relating to their unhealed trauma, mental illness, poverty, or overwhelming circumstances like a critically ill child, parents are unable to attune with us. We don’t feel seen and known. This directly leads us to develop core deficiency beliefs that we are unlovable and unworthy of love. We might hustle for their approval or go into oppositional defiance. We disconnect from them and from ourselves.
We all need to know we are part of a family and community that will help to protect us and keep us safe. Children experience emotional misattunement as a survival level threat. If we are not known and seen, we could die.
I call this ordinary trauma because it is so common in our culture. People are distracted by screens, media that provokes fear, and overwhelmed with the frantic pace of modern life. Feeling disconnected is by its nature traumatic and it often leads to physical, emotional, verbal and sexual abuse. This intensifies the fear and disconnection.
Without a base of belonging, a child cannot develop a healthy sense of themselves and their value. We live in fear that is reflected in a tight contracted body, shallow held breath, and catastrophic torturing thoughts. We become obsessed with perfectionism. We fawn and look for approval and external validation. We freeze or go numb. We become addicted to drugs, alcohol, shopping, gambling or the heady experience of power over others to escape our pain and shame.
Do you feel disconnected from yourself? Do you believe you are fundamentally unworthy or do you have a vicious inner critic? Do you have an anxious mind that races and generates catastrophic fears and worry? Is your nervous system revved up and you feel hypervigilant much of the time? If so, you are affected by trauma.
This is common in our culture and it is not normal. Download my 10 day course on healing trauma here. https://lynnfraserstillpoint.com/
Learn how trauma works. Practice breathing and relaxation to heal your nervous system and your mind. Free yourself from childhood trauma, leave behind anxiety and stress, and open up space for a meaningful, aligned, happy life.