First, do not minimize, dismiss, or disregard your pain, fear, shame, anxiety, or anything that feels not right with you.
If you are saying to yourself:” I had a privileged life. My parents loved me. We went on vacations. I was involved in all social events growing up. Who am I to complain about anything compare to what someone else goes through? Who am I to say I have trauma?”. If you are saying this, you are storing more of your pain, fear or anxiety into your body and when you are comparing your self with people who went through war, or abuse or something more horrific then you, you are making yourself just “messed up”, ” cursed”, “screwed up” and more of your real painful emotions is building up in your body and you start to feel even more isolated, alone and fearful.
Did you ask yourself ever how come some people who are rich and famous, and with so many friends still commit suicide? And this is an epidemic in N. America now. Why? Because people learn to wear masks in the world, and people learn to dismiss their pain for a very long time. And this is how we stored trauma, which makes people even more alone.
Also, know parents can love their children, and they can, at the same time, be entirely emotionally absent and not in tune with a child. If you didn’t feel safe enough to open up, to express your feelings when you were hurting or in pain, inside or outside the home when painful events happened, then you restored, and have experienced trauma.
Guess what? If you were not allowed to express your happy feelings and you were “too much,” what do you think happened with that innate energy? It got depressed deep down in you, and it got transformed into resentment, confusion, anger, and pain. And yes, that is trauma. And yes, de-pressed feelings are nothing but you experiencing depression one day.
If you were dismissed or told: ” Get over it!” “Suck it up,” ” Common it is not the end of the world.”, ” What are you complaining about, some kids are starving, count your blessings,” ” Keep it quiet”, ” She is our drama queen! “, you learned to stored down your pain and fear because expressing pain and fear wasn’t accepted, wasn’t comforted, and safe space wasn’t held for you. Also, it was minimized, dismissed, or discard by your parents or siblings, and probably you are doing it with your pain now as a grown adult. Why? Because you learned from the people you were looking up to, and how can a child know what is right and what is wrong?
This emotional neglect is storing in your body as trauma. And your body is usually telling you this through being overweight, underweight, having IBS, asthma, anxiety attacks, high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, migraines, insomnia symptoms to name a few. Your mind is telling you through feelings of inner shame, inner toxic critic, anxiety, depression, fear, numbness, addictions ( food, alcohol, substance, shopping, sex, work ), isolation, lethargy, over controlling, procrastination, not enoughness for example.
Your parents did care about you, and yes, they did love you, but they did not know better how emotionally respond to you as many were raised the same way, and many of them have Transgenerational trauma carried down from their parents and passed down to you. And yes, even you live in a privileged country, with food on the table and a beautiful lifestyle, you can experience trauma.
So, please. Do not minimize or disregard your trauma ever, and don’t compare your pain or your trauma with anyone. Your life is your life, and your healing is your healing, and your path is your path.