When You Doubt Your Own Trauma

October 02, 2017

It's been happening a lot lately, that I doubt my own trauma, that I just don't know anymore. That I am unsure whether what happened in my childhood caused me to be like I am today. I compare myself to others and often wonder how it was possible for everything to affect me so much. That despite all the suffering many people around me, who've also had a tough life, still manage to function like a normal human being. Yet, I suffer from depression and anxiety, I am unable to live my life because I saw, heard and was told things that weren't okay. When I think about trauma, violence - of any kind - is the first thing that comes up in my mind, but that is not what happened to me. It was subtle and it was bad. Or that's what I'm told.

I was raised in an environment where everything about society was to be against, where everything remotely enjoyable was to be demonised. There was no regular heating where I lived, no running hot water, no internet and no tv. Not because we were poor but because my parents were convinced this is how people 'healthy' lived. Everything was different and had to be different. It had to be ecological, never comfortable. You always had to be kind to others, take care of others and think for others. Responsibilities were always passed upon those whom they didn't belong to and victim blaming and  parentification was a big problem in the house I grew up in. Mental health wasn't important at all. There were tons of unspoken rules that you were just expected to know - which was extremely anxiety inducing, and depression for us was a lifestyle in a way. It was, and for many members in my family it still is, considered normal to feel like you want to die, that life is hard, that life is a chore, that it's society's fault that you feel bad. My therapist asked me a couple of times how and when I would actually do the things I wanted to do, if I rebelled or ever tried. My response was that I didn't have a choice and turned out a very sad and lost little girl. I'd accepted that things were the way they were because I was afraid of what would happen otherwise. My therapist has never used the word 'abuse' but she did say 'child neglect' a couple times, and that makes me very sad.

If I can describe the situation so clearly today, why is it that I still doubt myself, and don't allow my heart to heal and to feel a way about how I was raised and, essentially, mistreated? Because I feel like I had opportunities and even though I know why I didn't and couldn't take them, as my mental health was so poor, I still feel like I wasn't smart enough and didn't do enough with what I did have growing up. The fact that I invited friends over to my house, when I was younger, makes me panic now because to them too, everything in my home was different but still seemed rather normal, in a sense. They probably just thought that my parents were hippies and that was that. I bet that if they'd keep up with my blog today they wouldn't quite believe what I'm writing. That is also why I have such a difficult time talking to people from my past now because I don't want to be reminded of the struggles that I faced. Of how miserable I was in school, how out of place I felt, confused and worried all the time.

It's now years later and I feel a lot of pressure to be better and to get better. There's endless movies about children who come from broken homes and they kick ass when they're older and go on to make a shining career and be a success story. Even though I know I shouldn't compare myself, I still feel like a failure in many ways because it's already taken me 4 years to have the mind set that I have today, a healthier mind set and one that is determined never to go back to those dark thoughts again. I think sometimes I doubt my childhood trauma because I have difficulties accepting that it happened. I was in denial for so many years and was conditioned to think that everything at home was all normal.


  1. Hello Jolien! This post, I'm certain, resonates with anyone who struggles with mental health, and if we're honest, this is the case for most anyone. Your pain and confusion comes through in your writing. But I believe this to be a good thing. Writing can be extremely therapeutic. Time has taught me that outcomes are more likely to be positive when we take our lives one day at a time; one step at a time. If you look back, four years is a long time. Look at all that you have accomplished! Your YouTube channel is delightful, your product reviews are honest and on point, and you continue to express your feelings in these type posts. You appear to have come such a long way! Hang on to that and continue to flourish! :)

    1. Thanks, I really appreciate it :) I love writing about my mental health journey, it's not always easy but it's beneficial for sure. They're very different now compared to my posts when I first started. I sometimes still doubt myself though, whether I'm not being 'too dramatic' and so and so forth - sometimes I let my boyfriend proof read these before hand, just to be sure, I'm lucky he's always been very supportive! Have a lovely day <3 XXx


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