September is Suicide Awareness Month and Recovery Month
Often suicide and addiction are manifestations of dealing with the self-incrimination that occurs as a result of childhood trauma. Sixty six percent of adults have experienced an adverse childhood experience meaning they lived with abuse, neglect, parental separation, or loss. A negative self-image, flashbacks, anxiety, and depression can all stem from childhood trauma. These behavioral health issues then, correlate with both suicidal thinking and addiction.
Childhood trauma can cause us to have a very negative view of ourselves. It may lead us to believe that there is something is wrong with us, and we are irredeemable. The truth is we are all loveable, forgivable, and changeable. Adverse childhood experiences or ACES are often at the core of both suicide and addiction.
Trauma’s may include abuse-neglect-mental health-or addiction-issues-with-a parent domestic violence or parental separation If you have experienced any of these you are not alone. You are resilient and can overcome and recover.
The first step is to find a safe person you trust and share your story and your need for help. These experiences correlate with a person experiencing addiction and thoughts of self-harm as an adult. If you grew up with one or more of these conditions, please know that what-you-experienced or what-was-done to you is not your fault.
You are resilient and can overcome and recover.
The greatest tragedy in many of these situations is the experience of chronic invalidation, meaning a child grows up being taught they do not matter. If this describes you, I want you to know that the negative messages from your childhood are not true. The world needs your gifts and talents.
You are resilient and can overcome and recover. You are lovable, valuable, and changeable. If you need help, ask for it. Appleseed has counselors specializing in trauma work. Don't let anything keep you from getting help.
-Jerry Strausbaugh, EdD, LPCCS, Executive Director