Why I’m Embarrassed
So I’ve booked in for my first EMDR session this Monday. I’ve wanted to explore that route for a long time and I’m quite excited but also a little bit nervous because it means I’ll have to bring the memories of the traumatic events to the forefront of my mind. They’re not deeply suppressed at all-far from it- but When those memories are prominent in my thoughts for too long all the severe emotional hurt comes along with it.
Also, the truth is I’m deeply deeply embarrassed. My trauma wasn’t violent or life threatening or some great devastating loss or similar. Yet I was traumatised by my experiences non the less. And although now I’ve come to learn about complex trauma and that trauma is subjective to the individuals psychological response rather than the objective details of events that took place I’m still embarrassed that I had such a severe reaction to it.
It’s almost as if on some inner level I believe my response to have been evidence of weakness of character (goodness knows I was told enough times to “get over it”). Logically, I know this isn’t the case and I’d fiercely argue down anyone who dared to imply it was. Yet here I am, embarrassed.
Embarrassed by my severe reaction, when others I know have been through *objectively* worse and function fine
Embarrassed by the fact I allowed myself to be treated that way
Embarrased (or actually shame would be more accurate) over my own behaviours during that time period too. Some of it silly, sone of it incredibly foolish and some of it unforgivable
I can discuss the events and situations that took place during that time to close friends or trusted aquintences or professionals, when called upon to do so. But I can’t fully convey the severity of the emotions I experienced or the complexity of my confusing conflicting thoughts and feelings during that time. I can’t convey how strong an imprint those events left on me
Sure, I can and do try and use the best most accurate words from the recess of my vocabulary. I seem to be about as adept as anybody in that. But it’s not enough. Whilst these days Im often met with compassion from the outside, nobody seems to be able to fully grasp the degree to which I suffered because it’s so disproportionate to the actual events. Sure it was terribly hurtful and even horrible of course, but traumatic Kirsty? Really? Depression? Because of that? Wow…
Its not their fault of course, how can they grasp what is difficult for me to put across to them? How can they grasp what they’ve never experienced? And I’m greatful at least to be met with kindness and sympathy from friends and aqquintences these days as opposed to the impatient “get over it” and “Well you should *insert solution here* then” during the time period itself
But I see these lovely, kind, polite and sympathetic faces and I feel increasingly self-concious, and embarrassed because I see they’re still faintly baffled as to why I’d have such a severe long lasting reaction – a trauma – to something they wouldn’t typically associate with trauma
Hell, I’ve seen professionals pull a blank, baffled or even scowling expression where theyve struggled to grasp the events in relation to my response, causing me to feel flushed awkward and self-concious and never return
When I tell them that twice during that time period shock and distress caused me experience actual tunnel vision, they look almost as if I made it up. Like I’ve been watching too many films
Hopefully, this EMDR practitioner on Monday will be the one who does grasp-at least on some level- why I might have had such a severe emotional and psychological reaction to those events ten years ago.
Hopefully, I can stop feeling embarrassed soon