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Trauma Therapy

Trauma and PTSD Therapy in Seattle

What is Trauma?

Trauma is originally an ancient Greek word meaning "wound". This wound does not have to be a physical wound to the body and more often it shows up like a wound to to their sense of self, their character, or their general well being. Many different events can be traumatic but typically the event feels threatening to the persons life or sense of safety. What really characterizes trauma is the inability to recognize the event is over and an inability to feel safe after the traumatic event.

Trauma can look like:

- Feeling constantly alert to danger

- Feeling "jumpy"

- Difficulty concentrating

- Negative thoughts about oneself or the world

-  Blaming of self or others for causing the trauma

- Decreased interest in activities

- Feeling isolated

- Unwanted or upsetting memories

- Flashbacks

Symptoms of trauma can be very overwhelming and leave you feeling powerless, out of control, and fearful for your safety.

Nobody should have to suffer the symptoms of trauma alone. The good news is, you're in the right place and you don't have to deal with your trauma alone.

How can Trauma Therapy help?

The original idea of "talk therapy" stemmed from early psychoanalytic research into patients who were experiencing similar emotional and physical side effects as soldiers that were returning home from war. These early researchers discovered that trauma could be caused by everyday life events, and not just emotionally stressful events like war. The researchers then had these patients talk about their life, and the experiences around when their symptoms started. To the researchers surprise, the more the patients talked, they better they felt. 

 How can talking help with Trauma?

Traumatic experiences create a situation where you can be overloaded with powerful and conflicting emotions. Due to the circumstances of traumatic experience, you may not have been able to be fully aware of the emotions, or express them fully. These emotions can then remain bound up, and stored in the body. These emotions need to be processed and released from the body in order to heal the trauma. Putting words to the thoughts and feelings is one effective way to begin to drain the intensity of the emotions away from the memory of the experience.

 Until the experience is processed, and the emotions bound up with the memory are released, the stored emotions continually repeat, making present day life experiences that are not directly related to the trauma feel very similar to the trauma itself. In Psychodynamic language, this is called the "Return of the Repressed".


If you are ready to break free from the repetitions of your traumas, in a safe, caring and trauma-informed setting, click the button below to book an appointment with Patrick Rettig Therapy today.

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