It is now clearly proven that any form of early life abuse has a long-term impact on an adult’s life in a specific and structural way.
Childhood traumas could affect and completely transform routine actions like eating, sleeping or studying into uncontrollable disorders with a massive lifetime impact on both professional and personal lives. There is no aspect of an abused child’s life that is left untouched by potential challenges starting from understanding and expressing feelings, forming relationships and even physical health. The good news is that childhood trauma and abuse is now actively monitored and that researchers constantly develop innovative therapies and specific treatments to make improve recovery.
First Step – Awareness
The result of child abuse is a long-term specific self-dissociation disorder that affects developmental stages to adult life. In any of these stages, it is vital to identify the traumatic experience and the consequential problems that are issued by that experience. The connection between past trauma and present challenges is necessary for a more complex understanding and treatment. There are many people that suffer from early life trauma and develop Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder “cPTSD” but, unfortunately, there are even more people that are not aware of this condition. When you think about traumatic experiences the first things that comes to your mind are physical or mental abuse, but there are many others mistreatments that have the same harmful consequences on future adult development such as neglect, domestic violence exposure, and traumatic loss.
Identity Formation, Childhood and Feelings
Identity formation is an essential aspect of our development and it is a continuous process. Childhood trauma can alter this process in manners that will affect our lives for very long periods if not understood and treated properly. In our early life stages, identity formation takes shape and any disruption or harmful intervention will shift the normal developmental process. In this cycle, feelings are created and have a crucial role in a future healthy emotional evolution. Children are not able to understand, express and manage feelings and being raised in unhealthy environments will affect how they relate to themselves and others. Childhood is the moment when negative emotions such as anger or shame are both developed and associated with traumatic experiences like abusive punishment and neglect. From this phase, confusion will persist into the teenage and adult life transforming negative emotions into anxiety, depression, excessive shame or guilt, self-blame, and alienation.
Relationships and Physical Wellbeing
Trust is one fundamental piece of our mental puzzle and trusting others as well as self-confidence is an ability that is learned in our childhood. The relating pattern to adults that are present and impact the child life is transposed into later relationship development of any kind. Parenting is a crucial component towards adulthood social integration success. It is proven that there is a very close connection between a higher rate of failed marriages, relationships, and careers among adults’ survivors of early life abuse and trauma. An abused child develops a low level of self-esteem that psychologically becomes his social interaction DNA. This analogy might seem excessive but there is no aspect an adult life and body-mind system that remains untouched by this type of trauma. The traumatic experiences are marking up sleep routine, immune functions and other important physical functions like eating and from here all sort of eating disorders mostly bulimia and overweight. Besides other common health issues linked to a disrupted emotional development, adults that have lived an early life trauma are more prone to drinking smoking and drugs issues compared with other people.
Therapeutic efforts for recovery are more effective when developmental trauma is early detected. The treatment for any adult life disorder starts from accepting and embracing others help but mostly from a reconnection to one’s emotions and moving forward. Professional help is always advisable for a good understanding of affected aspects of life and specific recovery actions.