It’s all getting to be too much. You didn’t grow up in an easy family. You’ve been rejected your whole life, and never had people who validated your suffering.
What’s worse is that you feel like you caused it all. You have so much shame, and you’re angry and terrified all the time.
You’ve given up on so many things; you don’t think anyone will ever be able to love you. You don’t know how to trust yourself, or other people.
How do you keep going, feeling this way?
PTSD Therapy and Trauma Healing in Santa Fe, NM
PTSD therapy and healing from CPTSD requires a well-trained, seasoned professional. And from my perspective, learning to trust yourself enough to open up your heart is sacred work. It isn’t a quick fix, and long-term, life-changing success doesn’t happen in six or eight quick sessions.
Rather, PTSD and CPTSD therapy needs to happen gently, tenderly, and with a clear plan to both help you feel emotionally safe as well as teaching you new strategies and sharing new tools.
I’ve found that some of the most powerful ways to help people heal include
- learning simple mindfulness skills
- developing self-compassion practices
- releasing negative thoughts of being inadequate
- managing ruminating and overthinking
- understanding Imposter Syndrome
- utilizing CBT, DBT, mindfulness, and other neuroscience techniques
“I Don’t Feel Safe”
“I don’t feel safe” is a normal thing to think or say when you’ve been emotionally neglected, or psychologically or emotionally abused, or traumatized in any way. You can feel crazy, rejected and abandoned, sad, and sometimes angry beyond measure.
You’re restless and sad; your mind is deteriorating, and you can’t sleep.
You’re feeling so vulnerable, so trapped by your fears and insecurities that you don’t know where to turn. You don’t know how to believe in yourself anymore. And even though you’re falling apart inside, you don’t even know what you need right now.
When you’re feeling these things, emotional regulation skills are profoundly helpful and healing, giving you a sense of agency and control of what used to feel overwhelming and impossible.
What is CPTSD?
CPTSD, or complex trauma, can develop if you’ve experienced several significant stressful events over a period of time, rather than a single shocking event (which can result in PTSD). And sometimes the “events” don’t seem harmful or important enough for you to think there’s a problem.
Lots of times, people who are struggling with CPTSD think that how they’re feeling is normal, or that they’re doing something wrong. Which only makes everything so much worse.
Some common symptoms of CPTSD include
- feeling overwhelmed,
- anxious all the time,
- having trouble sleeping,
- emotionally out of balance,
- irritable and angry and sad,
- tired, and
If you’re struggling with CPTSD, you may find relationships challenging. You might have issues feeling emotionally safe with other people. Trusting others (or yourself) can be hard.
You may avoid intimacy because you just don’t understand it, you don’t know how to feel emotionally safe opening up to another person. Another possible subconscious trauma response in relationships is to be so wide-open and giving that you end up with nothing except resentment, and more pain.
Conflict may feel terrifying for you. Or, on the other hand, you may be so comfortable with conflict and arguing that you push people away.
Emotional Trauma Help in Santa Fe, NM
You don’t have to experience a life-threatening situation to be traumatized. Anything that causes overwhelming stress that you can’t cope with on your own can be traumatic. That can include having a big emotional response that you’re unable to make peace with.
You don’t have to be physically hurt to suffer from emotional trauma. Some things that can result in emotional trauma include:
- being the target of verbal or emotional abuse,
- being manipulated or gaslighted,
- having been raised in a dysfunctional family,
- a toxic workplace …
… the list of possibilities is almost endless.
Your nervous system is on overdrive. You’re jumping at loud noises, and can be irritable and impatient (because you don’t have any bandwidth for anything weird or unusual to happen). Adding to the list of clues, you’re extra tired, plus anything else from the list above.
And because your nervous system is revving too high, you have a really hard time feeling calm. Your mind is thinking and your body is telling you, “I don’t feel safe,” even if you’re not consciously aware of it. Tranquility is a fantasy.
What is Emotional Safety in a Relationship?
When you’re suffering from CPTSD or PTSD, emotional safety in a relationship can feel like another fantasy, too impossible to achieve.
Emotional safety in a relationship means that you’re comfortable telling the other person how you’re feeling, because you trust that how you’re feeling matters him/her.
When you’re feeling uncomfortable and vulnerable, you’re OK with #1) feeling those things, and #2) saying those things.
Communication skills are a big deal when it comes to establishing and maintaining a healthy, emotionally safe relationship. And it’s not something a lot of people learn as kids. Especially if you had a rough childhood or teen years, you probably learned to stuff down your feelings and never communicate your feelings and needs because it was too dangerous. Or, you might’ve been taught that fighting your way out was the only way to go.
Either one of those strategies says that you haven’t yet learned what emotional safety in a relationships feels like, and sounds like.
The good news? You can learn how!
The Santa Fe Therapist Approach to PTSD Therapy & CPTSD
PTSD and CPTSD clients have a special place in my heart. It takes so much courage to make that phone call or send an email asking for help! And then, opening the cage that’s been protecting your heart can be terrifying.
When you’ve experienced trauma, especially as a child, you have no idea who to trust or even what it feels like to trust someone else. “I don’t feel safe” is one of your strongest subconscious core beliefs.
But you absolutely can’t keep living so small and scared anymore. So you’ve got to dive off the edge of the world, closing your eyes and hoping it’s all gonna be OK. Because diving has got to be better than living the way you are.
It’s OK to Ask for Help
I’m here to tell you yes, it will be OK—more than OK. I’ve been there myself. When I was younger, there was a time when I hated who I had become as a result of unprocessed childhood trauma. All my crappy coping behaviors, like drinking too much, were suffocating me and making the people I loved miserable.
What to do? I got so desperate that I was forced into asking for help. It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, for reals. But as I began walking the path of healing a lifetime of suffering, my life started changing for the better almost immediately.
Honestly, though? My life was at stake, and I wasn’t willing to give up on myself.
It gets better, my friend; it really does. But you’ve got to put in the effort to make it better. And that whole terrifying thing is so much easier, more effective, and long-lasting when you have a seasoned professional guide walking with you every step of the way.
The Santa Fe Therapist
I’m Melanie, and I love helping people who are ready to work with a trauma therapist. In balancing the science of therapy with the art of healing, I’ll create an innovative program for you that sets you on a path of success from the very first session.
My compassionate, creative approach weaves together my ability to hear below the surface of the words, advanced degrees, years of specialized training, professional experience, and my own healing around trauma.
I use the latest neuroscience findings as I combine Western systems, Eastern wisdom, Earth-based practices, as well as creative, innovative ideas to help you process, heal and begin building your future.
My clients usually work with me once a week for 8 to 12 months. And some continue every other week for another few months. As we work together, you’ll be getting tools for long-term success and learning and using strategies and techniques to serve you for many years.
You’ll work hard for sure. But won’t all be horrible and terrible! I love sharing ideas about good books and films and laughing together once in a while.
My hope for you is that you’ll feel safe every step of the way as you transform “I don’t feel safe” into “Yes, I’m safe and well and happy.”
Online Therapy in New Mexico
Online therapy helps stressed women find the time away from day-to-day pressures to calm their nervous systems. It also makes it easy and convenient to process emotions and learn new neuroscience techniques to cope with challenges, heal the past, and begin building your future.
I strongly believe in the power of online counseling. Along with the research that proves its effectiveness, I see the positive benefits for clients every week. Please click here if you’ve got questions about online therapy.
Online counseling from anywhere in New Mexico, including Santa Fe, Albuquerque, Taos, Los Alamos, Pecos, Las Vegas, Tesuque and El Dorado.
Begin PTSD & CPTSD Therapy in Santa Fe NM
You don’t have to struggle alone anymore with feeling overwhelmed, afraid, and helpless.
PTSD therapy and CPTSD healing can make a world of positive difference in your life.
All you have to do is send me an email to schedule a free, 15-minute phone consultation: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Let’s get you feeling better as quickly as possible.
Other Services From The Santa Fe Therapist
The Santa Fe Therapist specializes in several areas of health, wellbeing, healing and recovery. I know that one size never fits all. My services are individualized to each client, and are based on your values, your needs and desires, and your goals.
I provide individual adult counseling and guidance in Santa Fe, NM and throughout New Mexico for: