How having a troubled childhood affects a child’s mental health
Childhood trauma is not an uncommon phenomenon. Many adults have some experience with a troubled childhood and the trauma that comes with it. Children with this background are left with dealing with the effects from childhood to adulthood. Hence, it is a big contributor to the kind of adults they grow up to become.
Why having a troubled childhood has a long-term effect?
As with any sort of troubled background, a troubled childhood comes with childhood trauma. This trauma can last from childhood to adulthood. Its effects are not only physical as it plays a huge role in shaping the victim’s mental health.
It is common knowledge that childhood is the foundation of a human being. It is the stage where a child develops skills and gains useful knowledge on how to navigate the world. Hence, once that foundation is tainted with trouble, abuse and trauma, it hinders the child’s development by either forcing them to grow up too fast or not grow at all. Children with childhood trauma develop certain behaviours like being too aggressive, having distrust for everyone, lacking communication skills, being toxic, suffering from depression etc.
How do you resolve childhood trauma?
The first step to healing is identifying. You first have to identify the root cause of your trauma. Was it a lack of parental love? lack of basic amenities? abuse and violence? etc. Answering these questions allows you to understand and process your feelings more. It is also very useful if you decide to see a therapist. Since you now understand what caused the trauma, it is easier for a professional to walk you through it and lead you to the path of healing.
In addition, it is good to list the effects of this childhood trauma that you suffer from. Listing them out helps you recognize what bad behaviours you might have formed and how best to stop them. It is also great material for a psychiatrist’s diagnosis.
These effects may be divided into three categories:
1. Relationship problems
Many people who suffer from troubled childhood find it very hard to create and maintain relationships. This is usually because they are scared of being too vulnerable and then let down again. So, they guard their heart against anything that would bring pain to them. They are usually distrustful of people and their intentions and have an irrational fear of being abandoned.
2. Behavioural problems
A person suffering from a troubled childhood, whether a child or an adult, often has a lot of emotions involved. They usually grow irritable and angry at the world and everyone around them. Also, they turn out to be aggressive and easily frustrated. This is a huge contributor to why they cannot maintain relationships.
3. Mental health problems
These are very common in people with childhood trauma. They suffer from anxiety, depression and self-esteem issues. Research shows that childhood trauma directly affects the brain and development of a person.
What to do as a parent to prevent a troubled childhood
It is often said that prevention is better than cure. Parents should do everything to ensure they create a safe and healthy childhood for their children. Show love and understanding, be observant, indulge your child in happy dealings, discipline them with love and not violence, and acknowledge their thoughts, feelings and emotions.
The goal is to love your child and raise them to be well-to-do adults.