Healing From Complex Trauma & PTSD/CPTSD

A journey to healing from complex trauma.

Discussed more processing positive labels & compliments.

In counselling today, we discussed this issue I have had, of positively labelling myself courageous, brave. I feel that I have the capacity and have demonstrated enough courage and bravery, to see why people label me as such…. but struggle with these labels.

The result of this discussion…….I have demonstrated these over decades of time. To survive all I have, and take care of myself for as long as I did, is ‘enough’ to earn me these labels.

We also discussed the term ‘warrior’ and I see that can shame people and why. I do have considerable insight and reflection capacity, to see this is a label, that people can give themselves to cope. They need it as an identity. But, it also shames others, who are not seen as being ‘warriors’. Which is not okay. I don’t want to shame anyone. I don’t need that label. I am human, I struggle at times. I don’t want the burden of trying to live up to the ‘warrior’ image. I don’t need that label as my armour – to help define my self image/identity. This was confirmed as healthy.

But, the outcome of discussing all this, is I have demonstrated enough bravery, courage, inner strength, resilience, insight, honesty, empathy…. to indeed call myself those descriptions. Without any clarification needed.

My counsellor does feel my ‘not good enough’ issues due to all the childhood abuse, have played into my issues with not accepting these labels/descriptions, in full. So, it is good I worked that out too. The ‘not good enough’ is something many narcissistic parent survivors, deal with. I see how mine, have affected me.

I don’t have to have 100% perfection – every single day – in courage and bravery etc…. to be ‘good enough’ to call myself these. No-one has perfection in these. What I have already demonstrated and continue to demonstrate over decades, ‘is enough’ to earn these descriptions.

We also discussed my recent thoughts about accepting complements, why I have struggled with them and how I am now dealing with them. Which was described as more self reflection, more insight. And definitely a healthy way to view compliments now. For example, someone calling me very beautiful. I can accept graciously, that is someone’s opinion. And that is okay. It is also okay if people don’t think I’m beautiful. I’m totally okay either way, and don’t ‘need’ people to think I’m beautiful.

What was interesting, was my counsellor stating, Continue reading


I have a hard time giving myself the label of ‘warrior’.

I’ve blogged about this before, and I am still uncomfortable with giving myself the label of ‘strong warrior survivor’.

Sometimes, I do not feel strong. Or a warrior. Sometimes, I feel anything but those labels.

I also feel like those labels are burdens that are too hard to carry. They imply I should be strong all the time. And if I’m not, I am weak.

There is a lot of victim shaming that goes on in society. And I feel this labelling, feeds into this. If we are not being ‘strong warrior survivors’ – we are seen as weak and acting like a victim.

It is a label, I struggle with, because I do not want people to feel shame for not being society’s expectation of ‘strong warrior survivor’.

I don’t want to feel the shame I feel myself, when I am not being a warrior. When instead I am struggling to get through the day, feeling suicidal and like I have no fight left in me. Should I feel ashamed of that. No, I shouldn’t. But, I do. And I know if I feel this way, many others will as well. And I feel so sad about this.

The reality is, no matter what state I am in, the very fact that I have survived all I have and I am here, and I pick myself back up after every low state, and keep going……… is being a strong warrior survivor. It takes considerable courage, resilience and inner strength.

But, being suicidal and struggling to function, is definitely not everyone’s description of a warrior and this burden we can carry of trying to maintain it, can feel far too heavy.

When I have burdens that are heavy, I am weighed down by them. When I give myself the freedom, to just be who I am, no matter what state I am in, I am able to cope better.

I also wonder whether this issue I have of these labels, are also about my ‘not being good enough’, due to all the abuse I endured from my mother. That ‘never good enough’ plays into how I think of myself, and if I’m not doing something perfectly, I’ve had to force myself to know it’s okay. Continue reading

‘Accepting compliments’ & a conversation about faith.

I have issues with accepting compliments. All trauma/abuse related. I usually wonder why people are complimenting me? What do they want from me? In my past, many people manipulated me with compliments  and so as a result, I am very wary of compliments. They can be very triggering.

But, I recognise, some people do actually genuinely mean what they say.

Today, at my ladies group, one lady described me as ‘very beautiful’ and someone who does not need makeup.

Compliments about my appearance, can be the most difficult to accept. I’ve been called many things about my appearance, good and bad. And all too often, the ‘good’ compliments, were said by abusive, manipulative people, who wanted to exploit/use me in some way.

I tend to shrug off compliments about how I look. Over the last few years, I’ve learned to be less concerned about the motivations of people giving me compliments. But, I don’t accept them either. I thank people, but inside the compliments are just dismissed.

I prefer people complimenting my values, character etc. That doesn’t have the same bad association – as compliments about my appearance.

But, today, this compliment was said by someone, who I had already discerned as someone who does not say anything she does not mean. She’s a lady in her 50’s, very well educated lady, clearly intelligent, confident and I always note her depth of conversation. And she does not strike me as someone who says things, without meaning it. There is no reason for her to try to manipulate me.

We also had a conversation between the two of us, about being Christians. Continue reading