The Rhythm of the Trauma Trap: Intrusion and Constriction

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceImages by Cindy Kunsman from Under Much Grace Several authors identify post-traumatic stress by three cardinal signs. The cluster of symptoms is described as hyperarousal. Intrusion becomes the cause which produces these symptoms, and constriction results as the response to the pressure of both. … [Read more...]

Creating Illusions Through Self-Injury When Trapped in Trauma

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceAll images by Cindy Kunsman from Under Much Grace and used with permission.In addition to self-destructive impulsiveness that can accompany PTSD, the person struggling to regulate their mood can resort to willful physical injury or self-mutilation, one type of addictive behavior that is used as a coping mechanism. Self injury may include a whole variety of behaviors from cutting rituals to hair pulling or interfering with wound healing.People who experience PTSD contend with very difficult and disturbing symptoms of mood and behavior. They often become anxious quite easily because of seemingly innocuous things which … [Read more...]

The Tommy Trauma Trap and Survivor Wars

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceAs always images by Cindy Kunsman of Under Much Grace used with permission A few weeks ago, Dwayne Walker graciously allowed me to post his views on what he calls the “survivor wars” among those who protest the abuses of the Independent Fundamental Baptists. Sadly, I see the same kind of vying for the alpha survivor status among many bloggers who write about spiritual abuse within the Patriarchy/Homeschooling/Quiverfull Movement. (Dwayne addresses the conflicts among former Independent Fundamental Baptists, abbreviated IFB.) … [Read more...]

Abandonment and Growing Flowers on Dark Islands

by Heather Doney cross posted from her blog Becoming Worldly I was afraid. Of rejection, of being alone, of looking easy to say no to, part of an odd crew that doesn’t fit and crumbles easily. Of being the wounded fish in a tank of sharks. Of struggling with money and jobs and affording basic necessities and having nobody there. I was afraid of original sin, lack of success, my own frailty, little mistakes and big ones, of not getting things perfect enough to not be treated bad. Of writing the email and seeing the typo that outwardly proves I’m a moron and my ideas are crap, only noticed after hitting the send button. … [Read more...]

Trapped in Trauma: Why Reenactment?

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceAll images by Cindy Kunsman at Under Much Grace and used with permission. Research in trauma demonstrates that if a person has been abused as a child, their likelihood of sustaining abuse later again in life dramatically increases statistically. Some of this can be explained by nurture or factors that were missing from a child's upbringing that would have provided for better safety. … [Read more...]

Before Treatment: Unknowingly Trapped in Trauma

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceAll images by Cindy Kunsman used with permission from Under Much Grace A previous post noted that problems like a sense of helplessness, shame, guilt, problems with trust, issues with boundaries, and bad dynamics send us into counseling to find help so that we can better manage our lives. In many respects, all people experience these kinds of feelings and struggles, but those who suffered trauma need more help. The nature of the pain we face seems far more complicated than a list of a few traits and patterns. How can things be so simple or at least so simply summarized? … [Read more...]

Trauma: Where it Begins and Where it Can End

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceAll images by Cindy Kunsman used with permission from Under Much Grace.Every few months, I read an online discussion that argues that when a person gets out of a traumatic relationship (especially a religious one), there are no guidelines on how to recover. While on one hand, that's true – because we all recover on our on timetable and in our own ways – trauma symptoms that cause problems in your life beyond about six months following the event aren't healthy.Unfortunately, though we may be reasonably healthy, the dynamics of a high demand relationship, religion, or group take a toll on us and cause us to loose the hea … [Read more...]

The Most Blaring Contradiction of Them All

by Cindy Foster cross posted from her blog Finding Fundamental Recently, I read a poignantly and transparently written post at ‘Stuff Fundies Like’ titled “Pining for the Leeks and Garlic”.  Anyone with knowledge of the Old Testament accounts of Moses and the Children of Israel’s 40 year wilderness journey will immediately recognize the title’s significance.   I’ve followed SFL for quite some time finding the irreverent sarcasm to be perfectly refreshing for those times when I need to laugh at the stupid stuff.  But this one took me back to an emotional place I hadn’t visited in a go Recently od, long while.  … [Read more...]

A Model of Self – Retracing My History and Healing

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceAll images by Cindy Kunsman used with permission from Under Much GraceAs part of my own pendulum swing of life extremes, I ended up in Quiverfull (QF) as an adult, though I never experienced the fullness of it. As Julie Anne Smith said to me recently, I didn't suffer the same kind of abuse as QF moms or their children, but I was also a victim of the system's cruelty. On top of my own natural grief and despite the experience of a degree of rejection by both peer groups of QF moms and their homeschooled kids, I did suffer my own heartache. … [Read more...]

Part 9 Reacting from a Place of Vulernability – Adventures in Ambiguity

by Cindy Kunsman cross posted from her blog Under Much GraceAll images by Cindy Kunsman from Under Much Grace used with permissionBefore developing as fairly functional internal locus of control and as strong sense of worth, and until former members work through how to relate to others with both good internal and external boundaries, things can be very difficult for them. There's so much to do immediately. … [Read more...]


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