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Trudy, Thank you for your comments. I am so sorry to hear that there is an "internal freak out. Admitting that I had dissociative identity disorder took a long time. It might be the same with you, but with time, therapy, outside support, or something else, you and your alters can get through this. Keep in touch. Aiko Shimada. Hi Becca, Thank you for the great article.

Why we can’t remember

This helped me a lot as I have been trying to access the repressed memory and have not had any success after many sessions of hypnotherapy and others. I read a book called Presence Process by Michael Brown, and in it, he said that you are to access the details of the memory only if that is "required. Most other sources say one has to finally recall the incident to be able to completely heal from a trauma, but what you and Michael Brown say makes more sense to me. After all, it is not the details of the story that happened, but particular emotions one felt at the time of the incident, and if those emotions are accessed and tended repeatedly till what you call "headmate" comes to a state of peacefulness, then the integration can be possible.

Would you agree? Hi Becca, do you have DID to are you a health professional? Hi, Georgina. Thank you for the question. I was diagnosed with DID 22 years ago. Please let me know if you have more questions.


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Thank you. Thanks Becca. You're very welcome. Thank you very much. This also is a completely normal response to trauma. You see in the above photo, this is a brain scan of a woman experiencing a flashback of a traumatic car crash. Her initial response to the crash had been to freeze and her brain, as you can see, shut down. When she has her flashbacks, the same thing happens in her brain, even years later.

This is completely normal. Now I know that to absolutely not be the truth. What I have found to be important in my healing is to be able to tell the story, in my own words, of what happened to me for example: I was sexually abused by my father and have no memory of the trauma. Finding the words to explain what happened to us can be transformative, and can help us gain a sense of control and agency.

I still struggle to accept that I may never clearly remember what happened to me, or know the specifics about abuse I endured. I hope that if you have those moments when the world makes you feel invalidated because of your lack of clear memory, you can remember this post and me and remember that you are not alone.

Overview and Introduction

Your brain is responding in a completely normal way to unbearable pain. Email me at Alisa [at] healing honestly [dot] com. Love you and am grateful for and immensely of your genius.

Remember at Your Own Pace – Sundown Healing Arts

I travel around the country giving talks, facilitate workshops and engaging on panels on the topics of healing from sexual trauma and supporting survivors. I promise, it's more fun than you'd think.


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Sign up to receive my Friday emails, which always includes new stories, my Netflix recommendations with content warnings, because, duh , and puppy pics. Skip to main content. Close Warning message This story may contain descriptions of PTSD symptoms, discussion of child sexual abuse, and the effects of trauma. Friday, January 19, Memory loss of sexual trauma is way more common than we think Memory loss is very common. Memory loss is a completely normal response to trauma First things first, our brains shattering the memories of our abuse is a totally normal brain response to unimaginable trauma.

Other things my body remembers. When you were brushing your teeth? Drinking a glass of water? One meditator went to a hour Wal-Mart and walked the aisles at 2 a. The noise, the lights, and the stimulation shifted his focus away from self-hatred. Learning to Love Again Metta lovingkindness and compassion practices offer essential ways to mend the heart after trauma. Trauma survivors are often plagued by a sense that they are unworthy or inherently flawed.

Trauma victims have had their trust and sense of connection shattered, and often have a hard time feeling kindness toward themselves and others. Metta practice can slowly rebuild these connections.

Imagine a young animal or pet and try extending lovingkindness toward it. At certain points, working with the metta can feel like silencing the pain.

In this case, try the following compassion practices instead. When I meditate, as the memories come I breathe in the silence and terror of the mute six-year-old.

Introduction to Traumatic Memories

I breathe in her inability to speak and her terror. On the out-breaths I send the aspiration that one day she will be able to tell her story in her own words, and I send her a feeling of my holding her—safely, protectively. She is so little that it takes feelings, not words, to reach most of her, and this takes time. Through steady patience, facing trauma can become part of the awakening process itself, and difficult emotions can become workable.

Healing trauma is a day-by-day journey requiring courage, persistence, and faith. Buddhist meditation practices offer positive ways to transform trauma. Although not a substitute for psychotherapy, meditation can be a crucial support in the journey from trauma to wholeness.

Long-term health outcomes of childhood sexual abuse

Thank you for subscribing to Tricycle! As a nonprofit, we depend on readers like you to keep Buddhist teachings and practices widely available. Subscribe now for immediate access to the magazine plus films, video dharma talks, e-books, and more. Tricycle is a nonprofit that depends on reader support. Help us share Buddhist teachings and practices by donating now. Courtesy Swiss Institute for Art Research. Chalk and acrylic on paper.

Get Daily Dharma in your email. Liberate this article! She is also a licensed clinical social worker and an author Dr. For resources on meditation and trauma, see www.