If you’re reading this, chances are your relationships often feel one-sided, like you are the only one doing the heavy lifting, listening, connecting, reaching out, being supportive, while the other person just never seems to reciprocate.
Trauma is any experience that overwhelms our ability to cope with it.
In other words, the deciding factor of whether an experience is traumatic or not, is whether it overwhelms your ability to cope with it.
The tricky part is that frequently, one way that we try to cope with traumatic events is to minimize them. That’s our brain trying not to be overwhelmed with the magnitude of the stress. This goes for events that overwhelm us physically, emotionally, or both.
Here are three signs that you might be minimizing your trauma, and thereby actually prolonging or intensifying its effects.
Many people can be socially awkward from time to time. It’s normal to experience periods of self-doubt. It’s natural (and healthy!) to second guess ourselves sometimes, too.
The important thing about impostor syndrome (rather than just regular anxiety or self-esteem issues) is that despite fears of being inadequate, you are wholly qualified to be doing what you’re doing.
Couples counseling can benefit any couple, of any age, at any time. But doing therapeutic work with the LGBTQ+ community is different. And I believe it should be.
The representation of couples counseling in mainstream media has focused heavily on cisgender, heterosexual, and monogamous couples. But what about the rest of us? The lack of representation shouldn’t dissuade you from getting the help your relationship needs.
Sometimes, your day just really sucks. So you re-do your most recent Postmates order, put your favorite Broad City episode on for the eighty millionth time, and open up ASOS to look at the new arrivals. Two hours later, you’ve spent all your grocery money for the week on the cute shoes you felt like you absolutely needed. (They sold out last time!)
If you’ve been living with depression, you have probably tried everything to get rid of it.
It’s not as easy as just “cheering up” or “focusing on the positive,” is it? Well-meaning friends and family love giving this advice, but obviously if you could, you would have by now! Instead, you’ve tried distracting yourself by trying to constantly have fun, avoiding uncomfortable situations and focusing on anything that could be considered “self-care” (whatever that means), or just giving in and staying in bed, hoping it would clear up.
Sometimes that works! But inevitably, it comes back. Then you’re not only depressed, but frustrated that you’ve “let” depression take over again, which makes you even more depressed, irritable, and exhausted.
It’s totally normal to avoid things that make us feel uncomfortable. Whether it’s physical pain like a toothache, or something hitting us in our emotional gut, like a bill we can’t afford to pay. For some, if left unchecked, this can lead to even more depression. Avoidance and procrastination can tend to make things worse, despite the fact that they are usually just coping mechanisms for situations that are overwhelming or feel out of our control.