Category : Health
Author : Sana Rubiyana
Signs of adult relational trauma and
loneliness may include:

  • Difficulty being alone: the constant need for stimulation or something to distract themselves
  • Difficulty understanding themselves or their emotional needs
  • Deep feelings of emptiness that may show up as “boredom”
  • Feeling worthless or fatally flawed
  • People-pleasing
  • Toxic positivity
  • Inconsistent boundaries
  • Deep feelings of shame or guilt

Childhood trauma can have lifelong consequences which vary depending on many factors including the age of the original trauma, whether the trauma was an isolated event or chronic, the presence or absence of parental or primary caregiver support, the child’s natural resiliency and the severity and duration of trauma(s). Irrespective of the type of trauma, its consequences may leave long-lasting emotional wounds, which increase the risk of developing an attachment disorder in childhood and the potential for adult relational trauma, including feelings of deep loneliness.
Signs of adult relational trauma and loneliness may include:

  • Difficulty being alone: the constant need for stimulation or something to distract themselves
  • Difficulty understanding themselves or their emotional needs
  • Deep feelings of emptiness that may show up as “boredom”
  • Feeling worthless or fatally flawed
  • People-pleasing
  • Toxic positivity
  • Inconsistent boundaries
  • Deep feelings of shame or guilt

Loneliness can breed further loneliness because loneliness is linked to feelings of shame and not feeling “good enough”. adults who experience feelings of chronic loneliness can become quite skilled at masking it and learning to hide it. For example, many who struggle with feelings of loneliness may try to overcompensate their vulnerable feelings with toxic positivity- where “don’t worry, be happy’ becomes a toxic mantra that momentarily pushes away shame and loneliness. They may become more depressed or feel more socially awkward by having to upload a ‘social mask’ which may exacerbate feelings of loneliness. Others may distract themselves through superficial relationships, self-medicating or addictive or compulsive behaviours including excessive video gaming.

Children who experience early trauma often have challenges connecting with others, or only feel that they are wanted if they’re “fixing” or “helping” others. This dynamic is often generalizes in adulthood as the trauma response of “fawning” behaviour, where a person ignores and neglects their own needs to put others’ needs ahead of their own.

Another factor that can increase feelings of loneliness is social media. Because social media makes it easier to avoid authentic connection with others, many adults who struggle with feelings of loneliness wind up negatively reinforcing their loneliness by “connecting” to others on social media. The more we turn to social media to fill a void in connection, the higher the risk of feeling lonelier.

Overcoming loneliness- The quality of our relationships outweighs the quantity when it comes to overcoming feelings of loneliness. By learning how to recognize what we are feeling, we can begin to validate all our emotional experiences. Through a better understanding our mind/body/emotion connection, we are educating ourselves on where our unmet emotional needs may be. This in turn can help us fine-tune more vulnerable feelings that we may be in the habit of pushing away or trying to avoid, which can include feelings of loneliness.

2 Comments

  1. Ramla Pottammel

    It’s true that the more the child is connected in social media the more he is living aloof

    Reply
  2. Ramla Pottammel

    It’s true that the more the child is connected in social media the more he is living aloof

    Reply

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