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I see your pain; I am hurt too. Let’s heal together!

Empowering Individuals and Society Through Comprehensive Support and Normalising Help-Seeking Behaviour

By Blessings N JubanePublished 2 months ago 5 min read

Life is full of pain and hurt and so it is to be expected that everyone around us has been hurt one way or the other. While on the outside we all look whole and together, giving the impression that all is well and going the way we want it to, we know that is not always the case. We may seem to be all good on the outside but deep inside we are hurt and broken. Someone did something or something happened to us and that hurt us, and life has never been the same from then on.

As a child I was abused by a family member and for a long time I never understood exactly what had happened to me. I was below the age of 8 and had no understanding of what was happening. My abuser groomed me for many years and because I was raised by a single parent, male attention was appreciated. He was so nice to me, and I had no reason to suspect his intentions as he was a very close relative. Of all the male relatives I had he quickly became the closest one to me and he would give me pretty much anything I wanted. He visited our home frequently and whenever I mentioned that I needed something he would give it to me and if my mum’s approval was needed, he would speak to her on my behalf. I loved it, I really felt loved and never lacked a thing.

After years of being the centre of his attention he finally got an opportunity to molest me. It was a strange experience one I did not understand at all. I could not speak to anyone about it as he reassured me, I was fine and that it was our secret. This was the man who gave me anything I wanted and loved me, so I had no reason to say anything though things were strange. From that day forward he withdrew his love and I felt bad as I thought I had done something wrong. It was almost as if he started to hate me, and I really was hurt as I could not understand why things were turning out this way.

As I grew older reflecting on what had happened to me, I realised I had been molested and that I had not done anything wrong but instead I had been wronged. Although I often told myself that I was fine it was behind me, this affected me a lot even in ways I had never thought of. The pain and brokenness were manifested in my behaviour and the decisions I made which I did not realise.

This is my story and how I was hurt, now I can only imagine what others have gone through too and how though we look ok on the outside we hurt in places no one knows about. And so as we meet in various places we all react to things differently and every single thing we do is a reflection of that inward pain and brokenness. So many of the conflicts and trouble we face with each other are more or less fuelled by the hurt we feel and do not even realise. We fail to understand each other because sometimes our pain only lets us see things our way and not consider others. There are times when things seem so simple to solve to those outside looking in but to those involved, they are complicated and definitely not that simple to resolve and so people go for years fighting and not getting along because each is silently clouded by the pain, they do not realise is affecting everything they do.

Many people like me have been abused, and yet others have encountered even worse situations—neglect, betrayal, exploitation, and indescribable trauma. These traumatic experiences influence how people perceive the world and respond to different situations. Sadly, more individuals get hurt in a variety of ways every day, and there appears to be a lack of adequate tools and services to assist them in dealing with the grief which match the demand. This leads to a build-up of people burdened with unresolved trauma. Alarmingly, some of these people end up holding positions of power, making daily decisions that affect the lives of others—such as managers, prime ministers, influencers, business owners, and so on. This only means we could potentially be led by those who are broken and seeing the world through their pain not through what we need —which is far from ideal.

However, by providing comprehensive treatments and support systems that address underlying pain and trauma, we can help people heal and flourish. Counselling, therapy, support groups, and community programmes geared to persons in need may be among the services provided. It is also critical to normalise seeking help for trauma healing, reducing the stigma and encouraging people to reach out for help without shame.

Several best-selling novels can assist us fully understand trauma and the necessity of overcoming it. Some of these include:

1. The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma by Bessel van der Kolk

This ground-breaking book investigates how trauma affects the brain and body. Dr. van der Kolk sheds light on how trauma affects individuals and suggests alternative paths to recovery, emphasising the significance of understanding the physiological repercussions of trauma.

2. Waking the Tiger: Healing Trauma by Peter A. Levine

Peter Levine describes how trauma is stored in the body and offers strategies to release it. The book emphasises the body's natural healing potential and provides practical techniques for overcoming trauma's consequences.

3. Healing Trauma: A Pioneering Program for Restoring the Wisdom of Your Body by Peter A. Levine

This book provides a complete path to healing from trauma utilising somatic experience. It contains exercises and practical suggestions to help people reconnect with their bodies and overcome severe stress.

4. Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence—From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror by Judith Herman

Dr. Judith Herman gives a thorough examination of trauma and its consequences for individuals and society. The book examines the stages of trauma recovery and the role of community support in the healing process.

5. It Didn’t Start with You: How Inherited Family Trauma Shapes Who We Are and How to End the Cycle by Mark Wolynn

This book delves at the topic of inherited trauma and how it impacts current generations. Mark Wolynn offers strategies for detecting and healing family trauma, enabling people to escape the pattern and achieve personal independence.

Understanding and healing from trauma would not only help individuals grow, but would also contribute to a healthier, more resilient society. When people are given the tools they need to heal, they can positively contribute to their families and communities, causing a ripple effect of well-being and support. Investing in such services benefits our collective future by encouraging empathy, understanding, and collective resilience. By normalising the act of seeking treatment and utilising resources such as these books, we ensure that more individuals feel comfortable and encouraged to engage on their recovery journeys, thereby improving our society.

To be continued..

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Blessings N Jubane

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    BNJWritten by Blessings N Jubane

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