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Childhood Trauma can Impact your Life Today

Clinically Reviewed By Dan Schimmel, LCSW, CAP
Updated On

For some people, such as those with an addiction to drugs and/or alcohol, it can be difficult to pinpoint when the trouble started. They may know when their substance abuse started, but they are unsure of why they went down this path. Furthermore, they have no clue of what the future holds.

The Negative Impact

Many believe that childhood trauma can have a negative impact on a person’s life. They may not realize it to be true, but things that happened to them in the past may dictate their current and future decisions.

Despite the fact that this may be true, it doesn’t mean that a person has to give in and simply let their past dictate the future. Instead, they can make changes that allow them to put the past in the past while focusing on improving the here and now.

Examples of Childhood Trauma

No two people are raised the same way. For this reason, no two people can expect their past to have the same impact on their future. However, there are many types of childhood trauma that have affected and continue to affect millions of people. Here are some of the most common examples:

  1. A dysfunctional family system. There are people who grow up in a loving household in which a strong family system is in place. And then there are those who don’t have the strength of a solid family to lean on during their early years. As a result, these people often times get off track early in life, thus leading them down the path towards a troubled future.
  2. No sense of purpose. When a child does not feel wanted, he or she may begin to feel that they have no place among others. Subsequently, they withdraw from society and begin to turn to outlets that make them feel wanted. This can include both alcohol and drug use. It is important for a child to understand their sense of purpose early on, as this gives them a foundation on which to build.
  3. An environment in which alcohol and drug use is normal. If a child sees others abusing a substance, especially at an early age, they may assume it is okay to do the same in the future. At the time, the child will not realize that this is a traumatizing experience. However, as they grow older and become addicted themselves, they may look back and realize that this is where the trouble started.

If childhood trauma has dictated your life to this point, there are steps you can take to leave this in the past. By doing so, you will find that your future is bright.


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