Trauma can affect different people in many different ways, yet in simple terms trauma – to a lesser or greater degree – occurs when something overwhelms us. Someone breaking a bone is a perfect example of a system being injured by an overwhelming event. The bone break (injury) is a “traumatic” event. Imagine breaking a leg bone; due to the intense pain caused by such an injury (trauma), your screams would alert everyone in the vicinity that you needed assistance. With medical attention, your broken bone would heal and resolve itself in a relatively short period of time.
However, if you never received medical attention you would not only have pain in your leg for the rest of your life, but due to the strain of the unresolved trauma (broken bone), your entire system would suffer as you try to compensate by avoiding movements causing the most pain.
Our emotional, psychological and physiological systems also suffer traumatic events, and an alarming amount of these forms of trauma(s) occur in our formative years. The problem is, the internalised and unresolved trauma can manifest symptoms of depression, anxiety, self-loathing, shame, guilt, and/or emptiness, to name but a few, as we get older. Unlike the screams caused by the pain of a broken bone, the internalized trauma pain often becomes suppressed. These traumas are therefore seldom identified, discussed, understood or ultimately resolved. If underlying traumas remain unresolved – as they so often do – then a serious problem exists and gets worse.
The truth is trauma can be resolved!
“Not everyone who suffers trauma will go on to become an addict or alcoholic, yet it just so happens that every alcoholic and addict has suffered trauma.”
"Matt is a unique psychotherapist who has phenomenal insight and knowledge. He talks from the heart with enormous passion, and when it comes to the specialised subject of addiction therapy, Matt is the only one I refer to."
(I Kirby, psychotherapist, Norfolk)