Healing From Complex Trauma & PTSD/CPTSD

A journey to healing from complex trauma.


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Drinking On A Wednesday ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

For some time now, I rarely drink alcohol. I used to rely on alcohol to cope, relax. But, I got that situation under control. I only drink maybe once a month. And then only on a weekend. And just 2 glasses of wine. I can’t remember the last time I drank more than 2 glasses.

But, today I have been craving wine.

And I guess with my mother dying, I’m allowed.

One glass is okay right……..?

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(Please note – I am not advocating for alcohol to be used to cope. I am simply grieving and just need to indulge myself this week). Continue reading


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Healing Is About Transformation Of Self, Not Putting On A Persona Or Identity ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

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Healing is about transformation of self.
That requires us to honesty look at ourselves, our thinking, our behaviours and see how trauma has affected us.
Healing is not about putting on some ‘strong warrior survivor’ identity or persona.
Healing is about getting really real with self, and what needs to change. And continually persisting in making the changes needed, to move towards a better life. With lots of self compassion and patience, along the way. Continue reading


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I Talked Today, About My Counsellor Being The Only Significant Person In My Life – To Model Healthy Boundaries ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

I wrote a blog a few weeks ago, about feeling very emotional to see my counsellor hug and kiss someone, whilst knowing she never offers this to me. I know now, I went straight to that place of toxic shame, to think that there was something ‘wrong’ with me, that makes me an ‘untouchable patient/client’.

This blog is at https://healingfromcomplextraumaandptsd.wordpress.com/2017/05/06/the-shame-hurt-of-being-an-untouchable-client-to-my-therapist-lilly-hope-lucario/

Since, writing that blog, I of course have continued to process this and start to see this from a different viewpoint. I realise, being an abuse survivor – who has been abused so much, that my counsellor needs to model appropriate behaviour, especially with regards to physical contact. To protect her and me.

It is sad to reflect on the fact that no other significant person in my life, has modelled appropriate physical contact with me. Each person has used, abused and mistreated me.

So, whilst I would truly love to have hugs and my hand held by my counsellor, I am in fact, now truly thankful that she doesn’t. It was hard to talk about this, but I needed to. And she handled it really well, and in a really sensitive way.

I know that for her sake and mine, I need really appropriate boundaries modelled. And this includes emotional and physical boundaries.

She did confirm that the person she hugged, was in fact a supervision client. She supervises therapists, for their own counselling, as counsellors. And she confirmed she did feel awkward that this therapist, wanted to hug and kiss on the cheek. So, I do know I assumed this person was a patient like myself. And I was wrong. Continue reading


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Whatever I Do About My Mothers Funeral – Will Be Wrong

My mother has died. I’m aware her funeral is on 30th May.

I had counselling today, and we talked about how numb I feel about hearing my mother has died. And how that numb feeling is normal.

We also discussed whether I should attend the funeral. I know that my siblings – will choose to see whatever I do – as wrong.

If I go to funeral – that will wrong.

If I don’t go to the funeral – that will be wrong.

That’s the problem with dysfunctional families. Whatever the scapegoat does, is always wrong.

I have decided not to go. For my own personal needs, I do not need to attend the funeral.

I would have liked to go – to support my siblings, if our relationship was normal. I only went to their father’s funeral – to support them. I wish them nothing but peace. Continue reading


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8 Ways For Complex Trauma Survivors To Build Self Esteem & Self Care ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

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Complex trauma is ongoing and/or repeated interpersonal trauma/abuse, caused with a captivity environment, where there is no perceived way to escape.

If this is endured within childhood, the child often fails to learn self care, appropriate boundaries and fails to develop a healthy self esteem.

For adults enduring complex trauma e.g. domestic violence- the self esteem and capacity for self care the survivor may have previously had – can be slowly destroyed, reduced and can become almost non existent.


Self esteem and self care are linked. They both lead to an increase in self worth, which complex trauma survivors can have a lack of.

The following is 8 ways a survivor can start to build, or re-build healthy self esteem, self care.

1. Know The Abuse Was Never Deserved

A survivor of complex trauma, often feels the abuse they endured, was in some way their fault. The perpetrators of the abuse often tell the survivor it is their fault, as a way of shifting blame to the victim. And this is another layer of the trauma endured.

It is needed to know – the victim was never at fault, the abuse was never deserved, nothing the victim did or did not do – means they are at fault, in any way.

The responsibility for the abuse was always 100% the perpetrators.

The accountability for the perpetrators actions, lies 100% with the perpetrator.

No-one should be blaming, shaming or shifting shame, about abuse. Including the survivor.

Part of healing is to come to understand this.

2. Self Talk About What A Survivor Does Deserve

Once a survivor fully understands they did not ever deserve to be abused, they can begin to have the self talk needed, as to what they do deserve. And always deserved.

A survivor deserves to be treated with dignity, respect, care, kindness and compassion. And they always did deserve this. The fact that someone abused them, does not in any way mean they deserved to be abused or mistreated.

Developing this positive self talk, takes time. It doesn’t happen overnight. It takes times to re-wire belief systems and the way we talk to ourselves.

This is vital, for the healing to begin.

3. Understand Healthy Emotional Boundaries

During complex trauma/ongoing abuse, appropriate boundaries are trampled over, by the perpetrator. This includes emotional and physical boundaries.

If the survivor was abused in childhood, often the child does not learn appropriate and healthy boundaries, as they were never modelled. Learning healthy boundaries, can be a difficult step, but it is possible. Continue reading


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My Work Is About New Insight Into Complex Trauma ~ Lilly Hope Lucario

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I am in the position of being someone who is writing about issues, rarely discussed or written about elsewhere. I write about the many layers and deep impact caused by complex trauma. I write about issues many survivors and mental health professionals – don’t understand and/or cannot verbalise.

Many authors are re-writing work about e.g. abuse, or PTSD. They change the words, but it is still work other people have already shared. The self publishing world has led to an over saturation of work about abuse and trauma.

And I’m not saying there isn’t any merit in that, but my work is insight I have not seen elsewhere. I am describing deep insight into the way complex trauma survivors are impacted, that is rare.

This is why my work was described by a psychologist as ‘an historic milestone’. Continue reading