Posts Tagged ‘child abuse’

How Emotional Abuse in Childhood Changes the Brain By Leonard Holmes, PhD

Martin Dimitrov / Getty Images

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Effects on Brain Structure

“Childhood abuse and neglect can have several negative effects on how the brain develops. Some of these are:

. Decreased size of the corpus callosum, which integrates cortical functioning—motor, sensory, and cognitive performances—between the hemispheres

. Decreased size of the hippocampus, which is important in learning and memory

. Dysfunction at different levels of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, which is involved in the stress response

. Less volume in the prefrontal cortex, which affects behavior, emotional balance, and perception

. Overactivity in the amygdala, which is responsible for processing emotions and determining reactions to potentially stressful or dangerous situations

. Reduced volume of the cerebellum, which can affect motor skills and coordination

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Effects on Behavior, Emotions, and Social Function

Because childhood abuse, neglect, and trauma change brain structure and chemical function, maltreatment can also affect the way children behave, regulate emotions, and function socially. These potential effects include:

. Being constantly on alert and unable to relax, no matter the situation

. Feeling fearful most or all of the time

. Finding social situations more challenging

. Learning deficits

. Not hitting developmental milestones in a timely fashion

. A tendency to develop a mental health condition

. A weakened ability to process positive feedback

These effects can continue to cause issues in adulthood if they’re not addressed. Adults who experienced maltreatment during childhood may have trouble with interpersonal relationships—or they may avoid them altogether.

This outcome could be related to attachment theory, or the idea that our early relationships with caregivers influence the way we relate to people later on in life.

Emotional abuse and neglect don’t allow for a secure attachment to form between a child and caregiver, which causes distress for the child and influences the way they see themselves and others.
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Navigating a traumatized existence

https://pixabay.com/users/aitoff-388338/

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Stating the obvious, we were innocent, helpless kids without the mental or physical abilities to escape or protect ourselves.

For me, healing looks totally different than a normal person.

Everyone talks about how connecting and trusting, having healthy social relationships are part of healing and wellbeing.

I did the opposite. Socially, trusting people was never going to happen except for an inner circle of a few.

For me, isolating from most people, stabilized my nervous system, so I could heal.

I never trusted people, never.

People betraying me, did so much damage after my childhood, I became a loner.

Finding a way to be happy without many attachments was difficult, but the alternative of a loved one betraying me was never an option after college.

I stayed alive, did not commit suicide, got up and created a private world for myself.

I am alive, I survived extreme abuse as a confused, little boy.

Terror followed me, nightmares, sweats, stomach aches, vomiting, anxiety and fear ensued.

Now, when all this explodes life goes back to feeling imminent danger is near, it exists deep inside my memories.

I can not make sense of my life and all the suffering.

Was I born to be a sufferer?

How should I endure a life filled with suffering.

Where is the worth in my life, keeps nagging me for answers

Abused kids can not escape the damage.

Any insight?

Note: I am not advocating isolating, except from your abusers, even if it is a parent until after you improve.

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