What part does trauma play?
Trauma can be experienced via a single event, a series of events, or sometimes even quite subtle experiences that build up over time. The effects or memories of distressing events such as childhood abuse, natural disasters, accidents, war, or emotional betrayal can all cause a person to suffer from emotional shock and resulting trauma, the full impact of which can take months or years to fully come to light.
It is quite common in our culture for people to use substances to regulate unmanageable feelings. Once substances are removed, those difficult feelings or traumas can rise to the surface.
As a result, simply detoxing from a substance such as alcohol or opiates is rarely effective, as the underlying issues have not yet been addressed. This is why a trauma-informed approach to addiction rehabilitation and care is critical for successful ongoing recovery.
Once you come to a clearer awareness and understanding of why you may be behaving in a self-destructive manner, you can begin to heal the layers with an integrated approach. You may also arrive at self-compassion – that moment when guilt falls away to be replaced with understanding and self-awareness.