Breaking the Trauma Cycle

breaking the trauma cycle

While researchers once thought genetics was the most significant influence on a developing personality, we now know the environmental factors surrounding you in childhood also considerably affect your experiences and decisions as an adult. If you grew up in a traumatic environment, you might be at risk of passing generational trauma along to your children unless you take steps to break the cycle.

What Is Generational Trauma?

A prominent hypothesis in developmental psychology states that trauma is a heritable trait. In other words, trauma passed down from your parents and even grandparents can impact your future in various ways, even if you didn’t personally witness these negative events.

For example, many people who lived through the hardships of the Great Depression taught their children to be frugal and never throw out anything that they could reuse. You may see echoes of this behavior in yourself if you’re the type of person who saves takeout containers from restaurants. While this habit is harmless, not all types of generational trauma are innocuous.

Children born to parents who experienced trauma could have higher chances of developing health issues like chronic disease and behavioral disorders. It’s also possible for the ongoing stress caused by adverse childhood experiences to trigger genetic changes in brain structure, which you may then pass on to your children. For example, brain scans of traumatized people show functional changes in the amygdala, hippocampus and prefrontal cortex.

How to Stop the Cycle of Generational Trauma

Many people unconsciously reenact trauma because they seek comfort in the familiar. That’s why children whose parents abused or neglected them might be more likely to end up in a relationship with an abusive partner as adults, resulting in household instability. By the same token, if you grew up with a family member with a substance use disorder, you may follow in their footsteps by using alcohol and drugs as a coping mechanism.

As a mother, you always want the best for your children, but you may worry about the ripple effects of adverse childhood experiences. Trauma-focused treatment guided by a trained therapist is essential to break these patterns, learn to let go of internalized negativity and ensure you don’t pass the harmful behaviors along to future generations.

Healing generational trauma can be a complex process, but with patience and commitment, you can create a healthier family dynamic.

Trauma-Focused Treatment in Prescott, Arizona

Trauma’s effects can impact every facet of your life. If you find it too hard to talk about the events that traumatized you and how they’ve made you feel, a women’s-only treatment environment can help you begin healing those wounds.

At Canyon Crossing, we have developed our trauma-focused treatment program as a safe place for women to end the shame and guilt resulting from their traumatic experiences and start regaining control of their lives. Reach out to learn more about how to find a fresh start.

Benefits of Residential AddictionTreatment

You cannot heal in the same environment that made you sick. This is the philosophy behind our residential addiction treatment program. At Canyon Crossing, women learn to live life on life’s terms while staying in a safe, substance-free setting. This gives our clients the space and peace needed for lasting recovery.
Our residential program combines high-accountability sober living arrangements with first-rate clinical care. While staying in our homes, clients participate in process groups, one-on-one counseling sessions, and hands-on learning opportunities. They also receive ongoing training; in these meetings, life skills like financial management and conflict resolution are imparted. All of this happens with 24/7 encouragement, guidance, and supervision from our clinical team.
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