The important thing to know is that we can heal and life can become better and better and finally good. So let’s think for a moment about the person who’s experienced a terrible grief, violation, or terror? The very hard thing here is not only the event itself. It’s the fact that when people who’ve been intensely hurt are ready to talk about it, many people can’t bear to listen. Sometimes they respond with irritation, or turn a deaf ear or want to help but don’t know what to say. So the traumatized person often remains emotionally isolated. Of course this can add to their difficulty.
Many of us recoil from such intensity, but you and I know that horrific things do happen to people in this world and when they do, who can they share it with?
The way to purge the “infection” that remains after a trauma is to finally give this client a way to express those intensely raw and primal emotions in an atmosphere of safety and compassion. And to teach them the skills that will help them move through one day after another, especially from early recovery onwards.
So instead of my putting “band aids” on the emotional wounds of my clients, we approach the situation together by letting the old, unexpressed emotion spontaneously come to the surface when it is ready. I encourage a client in this, but never push. Employing energy work as well as psychotherapy in these circumstances is very useful because re-traumatization is less likely to occur. It often lends a special kind of grace and help in these situations.
A person like this needs a safe place and a safe person to express their feelings with, someone strong and supportive who’ll bear witness for them while helping and encouraging them.
I can withstand intense emotion like this. If you know of someone who has survived a war trauma, suicide, murder of a loved one, rape, child abuse, adult abuse or some other great loss, please let them know I am willing to help them. And if it is you who want help, I am here.