C-PTSD results from repeated interpersonal experiences of fear, shaming, or control in relationships with others. It can also result from ongoing systemic abuse that is relational (toxic workplace, high-control religious situations, breakdown of the justice system), cultural (racism, sexism, religious abuse), and intergenerational.

Symptoms of Complex Post-traumatic Stress Disorder look like: 

     Re-experiencing trauma (flashbacks) 

     Avoidance of trauma triggers

     Heightened hypervigilance to possible threats to  safety 

     Interpersonal problems (difficulty feeling connected to others, acting out or avoiding relationships altogether) 

     A negative self-concept (a fierce inner critic, belief that you’re worthless, shameful, or bad) 

     Self-abandonment (not being in touch with or sacrificing your needs) 

     Difficulty with emotional regulation (feeling out of control of your body and emotions or dissociation) 

     Loss of faith

Healing from C-PTSD is complex. The pathway to healing symptoms of C-PTSD includes learning how to trust in relationships, self-care, self-protection, a clear sense of identity, connecting with others and drawing comfort from it, understanding your emotions and engaging with them effectively, working with your internal negative self-talk, and learning to navigate triggered trauma responses.     

All of these healing tasks are supported by a strong foundation of self-compassion and a commitment to loving and healing yourself by listening and responding to your needs in every moment.