Archive for type a trauma

I had visited this memory many times.

I thought I’d healed it, but it keeps popping up.

Each time, I realize there’s some new aspect of it that’s being healed.

There are several memories like this that pop up again and again to heal.

When such a memory is a very early childhood memory, I tend to think of it as foundational. These memories lay the foundation upon which so much of the rest of our life is built.

A foundational memory is like the initial fractal pattern that gets iterated in different ways as we progress through life. (Fractals are patterns that are programmed to “repeat themselves similarly.”)

The difficult thing is such foundational or fractal memories can be very hard to access. They are often buried in the subconscious mind. Sometimes they’re the results of what you didn’t get–the lack of nurturing that’s thought of as Type A Trauma or Childhood Emotional Neglect, which is every bit as damaging as more obvious abuse.

Foundational/fractal memories can also be generational. We now know, from numerous studies, that traumas in one generation can be passed down to the next. For instance,  the babies of mice who were exposed to the scent of cherry blossoms and then given a shock, will show a stress response in the presence of cherry blossom scent–even though the babies themselves were never shocked.

How can this be? No one knows for sure yet. My theory is that the memory gets encoded in some kind of “informational energy pattern” in the cells itself, and is passed down through the DNA.
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A Whole New Layer of Healing

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I have been on a healing journey for the past 11 years of doing Healing Codes, and I thought I’d experienced significant healing.

Every area of my life got better: health, relationships, and career.
 
However, since taking a marriage class on How We Love, and discovering the work of Dr. Jonice Webb on Childhood Emotional Neglect (CEN), I’m seeing that there is a whole new layer of healing possible. There is a depth and breadth of emotional experience that I had not realized was possible.
 
With The Healing Codes, we focus a lot on healing memories. Eleven years of working on memories got me to the point that I couldn’t remember much more.
 
The new layer of healing opened up when I realized that what now has to heal is not something, but a lack of something.
 
The lack of attunement to my emotions. The lack of validation of my experiences–good or bad. The lack of being shown how to navigate the difficulties of life.
 
The lack of  nurturing. It’s also called Type A Trauma (the Absence of nurturing, as opposed to Type B–Bad trauma such as abuse). Type A trauma is just as bad as Type B, but it’s harder to put your finger on. (And Type A is always present in Type B, so if you’ve had significant healing for Type B, you still need to heal from Type A.)
 
Search your memory. Do you have lots of examples of having your family ask you:
  • How do you feel?
  • What do you want?
  • What do you need?
  • Why are you angry, or sad, or hurt?

I didn’t. Actually can’t remember one single time when any of those questions were asked. I do remember a few times when I had experienced a trauma, and it was completely ignored. In fact, in one instance, my mother was concerned more about what my father would do when he found out what happened to me, than what I was feeling from the trauma.

It’s not my parents’ fault. How could they give me something they never even knew they didn’t have?
 
And how could I give my own children something I never even knew I was supposed to have?
 
How do you heal something you don’t know you were
 
supposed to have?
 
You do it through awareness, and relationship, I believe.
 
Now that I’ve become aware of CEN, I can do something about it. And I’d like to make you aware of what you may also have missed, but just couldn’t put your finger on.
 
A friend (who no doubt grew up with CEN) told me she would watch Little House on the Prairie and The Waltons to get pictures of what healthy relationships look like. She was filling her heart screen with images of healthy ways of dealing with life’s crises, images that were not part of her personal experience.
 
I think that’s a great idea. Finding healthy marriages, friends, families and examples from books and other media can “stock the well” of Love Pictures to use when trying to heal CEN with Healing Codes.
 
If you have a vague sense of chronic anxiety, or emptiness, or emotional flatness … or more intense feelings of depression, hopelessness, despair–CEN could be the cause.
 
Good news: You can heal that. Don’t worry about finding memories when doing Healing Codes. Just put in the prayer of intention, “from childhood emotional neglect” or “from never having my feelings/experiences validated,” and find a positive focus of a healthy relationship, or a memory when your feelings were validated, when doing your Healing Codes.
 
And something more: check in with yourself and your emotions periodically through the day. Take the Love Styles quiz and find out what injured  relational pattern you developed from your past experiences. Just start noticing, and healing what you notice.
 
If you do this, I believe you, too, will experience a whole new level of healing and relating. You can come to a place of feeling alive, feeling your feelings, feeling the warmth of connection, and seeing the bright colors in your world. Your joy will increase, along with a more solid sense of yourself and your own value.
 
And if you would like help with this, feel free to check out my Healing Codes Coaching site and consider getting some coaching and custom Healing Codes. I’m forging the trail ahead for you!
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With The Healing Codes, we look for memories that carry the same kind of feeling as the main issue that bothers us. The idea is that what bothers you now is likely attached to something called “implicit” memory (memories hidden in the subconscious mind), and if we find and heal that original memory, the current issue will resolve.

But what if, like many people, you can’t find any memories with that feeling?

Maybe you’ve had that feeling most of your life. Maybe you have very few childhood memories, period.

All the more reason to use something like The Healing Codes, because the original memories are likely so painful, that your Heart wants to protect you from the pain of remembering.

(This why, by the way, a lot of times “talk therapy” alone isn’t very effective. I had a therapist tell me, point blank, “therapy doesn’t heal anything.” We need a way to get at these implicit memories that carry the original lie.)

If you can’t remember much from your childhood, it may well be for yet a different reason. It could be because you grew up with Childhood Emotional Neglect.

Running on Empty

What happens when you grow up in a family in which emotions were not acknowledged, validated, and dealt with?

In her excellent book, Running on Empty: Overcome Your Childhood Emotional NeglectDr. Jonice Webb says that it’s not necessarily what happened to you that can cause problems. What failed to happen for you as a child “has as much or more power over who you have become as an adult than any of the events that you do remember.”

Some call it Type A trauma–the Absence of nurturing. And it can be just as damaging as Type B trauma, where the bad stuff like abuse happened.

Memories are formed when you feel strong emotions around an event. If your feelings were ignored, if no one ever helped you process your emotions, it can have an insidious effect on your life as an adult.

That’s because our brains record events as memories. Things that fail to happen go unnoticed, unseen, and unremembered.

You might struggle with self-discipline and self-care, of feel unworthy, disconnected, unfulfilled. Empty.

If you have the trait that 20% of the population has, High Sensitivity, where your nervous system is wired to process things deeply (including emotions), susceptible to over-stimulation (sensory or emotional), emotionally reactive, and sensitive to subtle stimuli–Childhood Emotional Neglect does even more harm.

When you’re Highly Sensitive, emotions are your native language. That’s a big part of the trait–emotional reactivity. If your language is not spoken or understood in your family, to them you were constantly speaking gibberish. You may have  been shamed or ridiculed. You may have tried to shut down, to turn off those feelings.

Thus you may have few memories, a feeling of emptiness and more likely than not, problems with your health, relationships, and/or career.

Emotion is energy, and that energy has to go somewhere. If it’s appropriately processed, it goes to a memory that becomes part of your life.

If it’s not properly processed, it becomes hidden trauma, and it goes into the body and mind and causes illness and disease. More and more scientific evidence points to emotional issues as the source of many if not most physical problems.

Then of course, there are the mental, emotional, and relational problems that show up because of hidden, unhealed memories. In How We Love, Milan and Kay Yerkovich identify five “injured Love Styles” that can show up in families where there has been emotional neglect or other circumstances that interfere with a strong, secure emotional bond with caregivers early in life.

What’s the solution? How to you begin to heal what Jonice Webb calls “the invisible force that may be at work in your life”?

Reconnect with Your Emotions

First, you may need to relearn the language of feelings. Just allow yourself to name the feelings, to yourself and others. For some, this may not be easy. You may feel shame for having certain feelings, or having feelings at all.

Or you may have trouble even identifying your feelings. Running on Empty includes several pages of feelings words, and so does How We Love by Milan and Kay Yerkovich.

Ask yourself when you felt that way earlier in your life. If a memory comes up, heal it with The Healing Codes and/or healing prayer.

If no memory comes up, don’t sweat it. Just say in your Healing Code Prayer of Intention, “… from the childhood emotional neglect.” Assume that’s the source.

If you have any fear around the idea of welcoming emotions into your life, start with healing that fear. We always start where we are. Ask, “What’s bothering me? What exactly am I feeling? When did I feel like that before”? If the answer to that last question is, “All my life!” then that’s what you put into the prayer: “from a lifetime of emotional neglect.”

These questions will help you move forward in your healing journey.

And if you ever need more help, e.g. with finding hidden memories, just contact me at www.healingcodescoaching.com for some coaching.

 

 

 

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