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Read More about Healthy Healing and Stories from Karen

Healing and empowerment seem elusive for those of us who have survived abuse and trauma. Understanding WHY you do WHAT you do speaks to the awareness needed in order to address and heal. Understanding the roots of your behaviors is essential. You don’t need to remember every single detail of your trauma, but you do need to know the connection between your current maladaptive/unhealthy behaviors and your trauma.

Understanding Trauma Survivors’ Risky Behaviors

For many trauma survivors, healing and recovery is not just about overcoming the past; it’s also about battling maladaptive behaviors like addiction that often follow. Addiction, whether to substances like alcohol and drugs (including prescribed medications) or behaviors like overspending, pornography, food binging, or gambling – often emerge as coping mechanisms for those of us who have experienced and survived abuse or trauma. Here’s a closer look at why trauma survivors struggle with addictions and the importance of addressing both issues together.

What are the Links Between Trauma and Addiction?

Healing shame involves a deeper self-exploration. Healing also means recognizing that your worth is not defined by your mistakes or how others may judge you. It is vitally important to separate yourself from who you are from what you have done or what’s been done to you. Self-compassion, empathy, and support from others is also crucial to your healing. Focus on building a positive sense of self, focus on your strengths, and connect with people who accept and love you unconditionally can help diminish the power of shame and foster a healthier, more compassionate view of yourself. You are worth this!

Healing Shame After Trauma