What Trauma Survivors Take From Their Experience With Trauma

  • Posted at Mar 11, 2022
  • Written by Rebecca
What Trauma Survivors Take From Their Experience With Trauma

There are a number of different experiences that are considered traumatic. Living through trauma is something that can affect a person for the rest of their lives. Furthermore, experiencing trauma can bring about life-changing symptoms that are dangerous to a person’s mental and physical wellbeing. Trauma survivors take a number of debilitating symptoms from their experiences with trauma. However, it’s important that victims of trauma understand the types of trauma and how to cope with trauma so they can live out the remainder of their lives without the negative and debilitating effects of trauma.

Identifying the Different Types of Trauma

Traumatic experiences look different for every person who has been touched by trauma. What trauma survivors take from their experience with trauma can help to determine the type of trauma they may have experienced. Furthermore, the traumatic experience itself can help to identify the type of trauma a person has experienced. Different types of traumatic experiences bring about different reactions and debilitating symptoms. So, identifying the type of trauma a person has experienced can help to better identify the type of professional help and treatment that may work best.

There are three categories of trauma that help to define and characterize experiences of trauma: type 1, type 2, and intergenerational trauma.

The First Type of Trauma; Type 1

The first category of traumatic experiences is type 1 trauma. These traumatic experiences include situations that are sudden and unexpected. People who experience this type of trauma are at a higher risk of developing PTSD. Some examples of type 1 traumatic experiences include:

  • losing a loved one suddenly
  • being the victim of a crime such as assault
  • sexual, physical, or emotional abuse
  • witnessing or surviving an act of violence
  • war combat
  • being diagnosed with a chronic illness
  • being hospitalized for illness or injury
  • pregnancy and childbirth
  • surviving a suicide attempt
  • surviving a vehicular accident

The Second Type of Trauma; Type 2

This type of trauma is characterized by experiencing these events during earlier stages of life. Experiencing trauma as a child and during critical periods of development can hinder a person’s social relationships and bring about negative issues like feelings of hopelessness. Therefore, contributing to the development of symptoms that define and characterize PTSD.

Some examples of type 2 trauma during childhood can include:

  • neglect and/or abandonment
  • abuse from siblings
  • being gaslit or manipulated by family members
  • violence in the home
  • verbal, emotional, physical, or sexual abuse
  • not getting correct or assistive medical help or diagnosis for injury/illness
  • overwhelming care (severely strict, religious influence, etc.)
The Third Types of Trauma; Intergenerational Trauma

Sometimes, the experience of trauma doesn’t just affect the person who’s directly involved or witnessing a traumatic event. Rather, trauma can influence and affect people throughout generations.

Some examples of generational trauma can include ongoing family history or experiences of:

  • racism
  • genocide
  • slavery
  • war combat
  • compulsory removal of family members

Getting Help for the Different Types of Trauma

Trauma survivors may go through life differently than others as a result of their experience with trauma. They may take things from their traumatic experiences that make it hard for them to create meaningful relationships with others, set healthy boundaries, strive in the workplace, and much more. Therefore, it’s important for people struggling with the effects of trauma to seek professional help.

Trauma treatment programs can give people dealing with the effects of PTSD helpful coping mechanisms in order to overcome the effects of trauma. Find out more about how trauma treatment helps people who have experienced any or even all of the types of trauma establish lives of mental wellbeing today.

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