Counter-Acting Trauma Lies

Below are some common trauma lies, and some ideas on how to reframe these thoughts so they’re more in line with reality.

1. The LIE: “There is no-one who is safe. There is no-one I can trust. I need to look out for myself – for I can only trust myself.”

The TRUTH: There are people in this world who are trustworthy and safe. They won’t deceive you. They won’t gaslight you. They won’t manipulate me. They won’t lie to you. With these individuals ‘what you see is what you get.’ The majority of people don’t want to hurt or harm you.

2. The LIE: “I need to keep my guard up in order to be safe. I can’t ever risk being open, or being vulnerable, again.”

The TRUTH: You will likely be more cautious if you’ve been traumatized, but you can learn to trust your instincts, and to be more vulnerable, with people who have shown you they are trustworthy and safe.

3. The LIE: “I need to stay alert, and be hyper-vigilant.”

The TRUTH: You will wear yourself out if you stay on high alert. Yes, you need to be aware of what is happening around you, but there are numerous situations where it’s OK to relax.

4. The LIE: “Sleeping isn’t safe as I can’t protect myself.”  

The TRUTH: The trauma’s in the past. It is over. You survived. It is healthy to sleep, and to renew your strength.   

5. The LIE: “Don’t be deceived: Things are never what they seem.”

The TRUTH: There will always be some tricksters and a few manipulators. But in most situations, there are no hidden agendas, and peoples’ intentions are genuine and sincere.   

6. The LIE: “I can’t trust my instincts or my intuition.”

The TRUTH: We can learn how to listen to our bodies again, and to notice those small clues that say ‘we need to be on guard.’  Your body and your brain are finely-tuned to pick up signs. With patience and with time you can trust yourself again. And it is wise and safe to choose to trust yourself.

7. The LIE: “I’m never going to recover, and live a normal life again.”

The TRUTH: Recovery is a journey – and it isn’t a straight road. You’lI have good times; you’ll have bad times. And it’s going to take time. The bad times are less frequent, and less scary, than before. You can see you’re making progress. You’re not in the same place.”  

“It’s okay if you thought you were over it but it hits you all over again. It’s okay to fall apart even after you thought you had it under control. You are not weak. Healing is messy. There is no timeline for healing.”

13 thoughts on “Counter-Acting Trauma Lies

  1. All of these spoke to me, as a trauma survivor, but especially 1-3. Isolation has often been a first line of defense for me. But this is no cure. I still need others and they need me. Great post! God Bless.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Isolation feels protective when we’re trying to deal with the fallout from trauma. I have had the same instinct as you, David. But, as you say, this is no cure and we DO need others. Thanks so much for reading and commenting. Blessings on your week.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I try not to think in absolutes, totally black, and white

    So I know there are trustworthy people out there. How do, you spot them? But I have safe friends

    My guard is not always up but if I enter an emotional social situation, my defense mechanism launches on his own.

    My defense mechanism spots danger subconsciously, he is high alert around strangers and some places.

    I sleep well and trust my instincts. My meditation practice and therapy have given me a safe space

    Like

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