Updated: Jan 5
Your triggers are like trauma DNA, they contain missing parts of your story.
Triggers, as uncomfortable and annoying as they may be, are 'truth bombs' waiting to tell you everything you've been too scared or resistant to know. They seem like unruly parts of your psychology that try to interrupt every part of life, but it's just a part of you that is wanting to be seen, loved, reassured, and held.
If you're in a critical stage of recovery, triggers may be intense and sometime incontrollable. They may put you into trauma-response or dissociation and this is 100% normal. You won't always experience triggers this intensely, so take heart and know that you are on your way to a full recovery.
As time goes by and you get the hang of what tends to trip you up into a trigger, you will actually grow in strength to outmuscle the fear, disgust, and hatred they bring on. You will learn to say, "Trigger, I am safe now," and you can even follow your triggers back to the truth of what happened to you.
My triggers helped me piece my story together.
All of my triggers gave me clues about what I went through. Before I had memories of what happened, my night phobias and OCDs let me know that my trauma must've happened to me around bedtime. This was further confirmed when I'd wake up dissociated or with cold-sweats in the middle of the night.
I had to grow in strength to face my "scary feelings" brought on by triggers, and it took me a while not to just 'dissociate' out of my body when I was triggered. But the more courage I gained the more I was able to 'see' what happened to me, which helped me process my pain and heal.
What are your triggers? What are they trying to tell you about your story?
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• My Dance With Dissociation