15 Steps Adults Need to Take to Recover from Childhood Trauma

Childhood trauma is more common than we’d like to admit. There are many instances that may result in childhood trauma, such as domestic violence, sexual abuse, and life in a conflict zone to name a few. Because they are individuals, children deal with trauma differently. Some speak immediately, but others have a fear of speaking out, and so they suppress it. For many, they only begin the process of recovering from childhood trauma once they are grown-ups.

A lot of adults seeking to recover from childhood trauma did not trust the adults around them when the incidents occurred, or they felt the adults were as powerless as they were and so they did not speak up. Many manage to erase the incidents from their conscious awareness. But this seldom lasts forever, and so as grown-ups they must face their trauma and begin the process of recovering from it.

Childhood trauma can be a very isolating experience. Adults recovering from trauma often express surprise when they find out that they were not the only ones who experienced it. This is very common when it comes to sexual abuse.

Abusers tell children that it’s a secret and not to speak about it, and this makes children feel that no one else is experiencing it and no one else will understand what they’re feeling. So, it sometimes takes years, if not decades, before they feel safe to report the abuse they experienced. Here are some steps to follow for those adults seeking to recover from the childhood trauma they experienced.

1. Find your roots

This is an introspective process which requires much honesty and will expose you to reliving the events that have caused you pain. This may sound like a bad idea, but confronting trauma is the only way to fully deal with it. It should have started immediately after the trauma. But, for a variety of reasons, you were unable to do so at the time. But it is not too late. It will be hard, but it can be done. Before you start, prepare your body and mind for what is to come. Understand that things may need to get worse before they get better. You need to be in a relaxed state, physically, emotionally and mentally.

Take a walk around your home and identify a room that you feel comfortable and safe in. It could be your bedroom which is like a sanctuary from the rest of the world. It could be your living room, in the comfortable, secure depths of your favorite sofa. Make sure that the place you use is quiet and free from distractions.

Think about how you want to position your body. You might feel comfortable sitting, lying down or curling up.  If necessary, try them all to decide. Make sure you are dressed in non-restrictive clothing. If your clothing is making you feel uncomfortable, you won’t be able to put 100% focus on the process.

Prepare your mind and body by taking up your comfortable position in your chosen room. Close your eyes and breathe deeply. Take the time to flex and feel the muscles in your body. Empty your mind of all thoughts that are irrelevant to this process, and you are ready for the next step.