Trauma can be viewed as not just a bad event happening, but the experience and negative memory of it is not being able to be ‘released’ or more positively transformed. Trauma and PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder) can manifest in different ways in each person, and can originate from a variety ways as well. In general, bad experiences a person undergoes (i.e. frightening, defeating, invalidating) from which someone struggles to fully overcome, may result in the person carrying this trauma long-term. Most people can relate to some degree with experiences of such as fear, defeat, hopelessness, etc.., but not being able to access the necessary ‘resources’ (both external and internal) to match this can have a serious effect. This essentially leads to some degree of traumatization. In extreme circumstances such as assault, or other types of overt abuse, resources not matching the fear and terror is unsurprising. However in more discrete ways this same process can occur, but often is relatively undetected due to it being a more subtle situation (but still upsetting). And although the term PTSD expresses “disorder”, it is probably better understood as a natural response to a situation a person is not meant to endure.
Manifestation of trauma can vary greatly; from subtle self-defeating thoughts, to intense flashbacks and dissociative experiences. Although some of the symptoms caused by trauma and PTSD are commonly recognized (such as nightmares, flashbacks, and substance abuses), symptoms that often go less noticed function very similarly. These may be; low self confidence, various types of anxiety and depression, and chronic feelings of shame. Additionally, these and other symptoms commonly have a root in relational issues. This refers to chronic problems in relationships with individuals such as; intimate partners, family of origin, close peers, and other loved ones. These issues may lead to strained relationships, cutoff, high-conflict, lack of trust and affection, etc..