Repressed Pain: Can It Be Harder For Someone To Repress Their Pain If They Experienced Developmental Trauma?
Although someone might have been able to handle life before, they could now be in a position where they are finding it hard to function. Then again, they might have been this way for a little while.
When it comes to what is going on for them, their thoughts could be all over the place and they could experience a fair amount of fear and anxiety, for instance. This is then going to make it hard for them to concentrate, feel at ease and sleep at night.
A Big Effect
Being this way is likely to have an undermining effect on their job or career, make it hard for them to be present around others, to recharge and have enough energy to handle simple, let alone complex tasks.
At this point, what could be clear to them is that they need to do something about what is going on. If so, this could show that they have done their best to keep it together and function up until this stage.
The Next Step
Now, if they were to end up talking to a friend or family member about this, they could be told that they need to see a counsellor. It might even be put forward to them that it would be a good idea for them to go on medication.
After paying attention to what this person has said, they could pay a visit to their doctor. This could be a time when it is suggested that they work with a therapist and/or go on medication.
If they end up working with a therapist, there is a strong chance that the area of focus will be their mind. They could be told, in one way or another, that the reason their life is the way it is, is due to what is taking place in this part of them.
Therefore, by changing their thoughts and perhaps their beliefs, they will gradually be able to change their life. To do this, it will be essential for them to be aware of their ‘irrational’ and ‘negative’ thoughts and to replace them with ‘rational and ‘positive’ thoughts and to simply not get caught up in them.
The Key Area
By applying what they have learned and even changing their behaviour, they may find that their life does start to change. Over time, then, their mind may start to settle and they may feel more at ease.
This can be seen as proof that what was going on in their mind was the problem as by changing it, their life is being transformed. However, this approach might only work for a short while or it might not work at all.
If it only works for a short time, it could be said that they need to keep going, and the same could be said if it doesn’t work. The key will be for them to keep in mind that change takes time.
But, even if they do hang in there and don’t expect overnight change, it still doesn’t mean that this approach will last or will even work. The trouble is that if how they experience life is seen as being all about what is going on in their mind; this is going to be hard to understand.
A Closer Look
What if this is not the truth and that how they experience life is not purely a consequence of what is taking place in their mind? What if this part of them also reflects what is taking place in other parts of them being?
With this in mind, what if changing what is going on in their mind simply represses the pain that is trying to enter their conscious awareness? Furthermore, what if their brain needs to be in a certain condition in order for this process to actually work?
An Unknown Process
What this would mean is that it is not solely about the mind and the only way that this view can be maintained is by having a brain that functions in a certain way. So, if someone has tried to change their life by changing what is going on in their mind and it hasn’t worked, it could show that their brain’s ability to repress pain is not very effective.
Whereas it was effective, as it will be for some people, their ability to use their frontal cortex to repress pain that is trying to break through to their conscious awareness would generally work, thereby allowing them to keep it together and function. Upon hearing this, they could wonder why their brain is not very effective in this regard.
A Deeper Look
What this may illustrate is that their developmental years were not very nurturing, which would have had a big effect on their brain and nervous system. This may have been a time when they were often neglected.
It could go back even further, though, as their time in their mother’s womb might not have been very harmonious. On one hand, this would have caused them to experience a lot of pain, and, on the other, they would have been deprived of the love that they needed to develop a well-functioning brain.
A Natural Outcome
Nonetheless, as this would have taken place very early on, their conscious mind wouldn’t have had any idea about what took place. This would have meant that the pain that they are carrying would have been a mystery, although they will have been aware of the symptoms of it, and they wouldn’t have realised that they were deprived of the nutrients that they needed very early on and so how they experience life can just be what is normal.
As for someone who did have a nurturing or ‘good enough’ developmental period, not only are they unlikely to be loaded up with pain from this stage but their brain is also likely to be far better at repressing input from their limbic system and brainstem, allowing them to typically keep it together and function. Thanks to this, they will be able to believe the half-truth that it is all about the mind and express this view to people who have a brain that doesn’t function in the way that theirs does.
If someone can relate to this and they are ready to change their life, they may need to reach out for external support. This is something that can be provided with the assistance of a therapist or healer.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 25 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.