childhood abuse

Childhood Abuse

Children can be the victims of sexual abuse, emotional abuse and physical abuse. Experiencing abuse as a child can have a significant impact on our emotional health as adults. There can be lasting effects throughout a person’s life, regardless of how long ago we experienced the abuse. This can impact everyday life in significant and painful ways. Some people live with the impact of abuse experienced in childhood, particularly if they couldn’t seek support at the time.

Survivors of childhood abuse can often experience feelings of anxiety, worry, shame, guilt, helplessness, hopelessness, grief, sadness and anger. Surviving abuse as a child has been linked with higher rates of anxiety, depression, suicide and self harm. Some also experience PTSD, drug and alcohol misuse and relationship difficulties.

Children who experience abuse may develop what is called ‘a heightened stress response’. This can impact their ability to regulate their emotions, lead to sleep difficulties, lower immune function, and increase the risk of a number of physical illnesses throughout adulthood.

How can therapy can help if you have experienced childhood abuse

Talking through your experience with a therapist can help you process your emotions. This helps alleviate the impact that the abuse you experienced as a child has in your life as an adult. A therapist will listened to you with attention and compassion. Expressing yourself in a confidential, non-judgemental space can help you heal and live with a greater sense of peace.

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