Being abused as a child vs being abused as an adult

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Same boat --- had an amazing childhood and then a crappy adulthood and I used to feel guilty -- or feel like I shouldn't be upset because I was lucky as a kid. I've read what some of the people on this site have gone thru as kids and asked myself -- how dare I complain.

It's taken a while to understand that trauma is trauma -- it doesn't come with an age requirement. Whether it occurred at 6 months, 6 years or 60 years --- trauma is trauma.


the military who suffer ptsd In service don’t question their childhood do they?

( they should not! )

I came here explaining I survived childhood that was not great. I also survived other criteria meeting situations, no ptsd. My ptsd trigger is ’less bad ’ to others than some some stuff I have been through. Therapy has helped me understand why it was my trigger ( though innately I knew) .

I m GLAD for those if you that had great childhoods. Thank god! Probably makes some of this worse if anything


These distortions cause so much suffering, don't they? I had an awful childhood but have been in a good marriage for 18 years and my adulthood has been fine. It's been so "fine" that I feel like I have no right to whine and complain about ancient history. I berate myself for letting such old events and experiences have any power over my present. I do think it's a common denominator of minimization and the lack of self-compassion. The particulars of trauma matter to us and our own healing, of course, but there is no trauma olympics... We have to try to learn to be gentle and compassionate with ourselves. I have no platform for lecturing. I struggle with this every day.


I should have never stuck it out for as long as I did nor should I have issues from it. I should have known better.
I think the same exact things myself. I could have prevented all of this. I could have been free all those years. My life would have been a whole lot better, even if I still had PTSD, which I wouldn't have had either of course if I bailed out soon enough, or if I left the first time he hit me.

I try hard to tell myself "you did what you had to do" and "you did the best you could" but I can't bring myself to believe those things fully, yet.

I go back and forth from acknowledging what happened to me was severe, to trying to dismiss or minimize it. I try to deny that it was as bad as it was, even though he broke my bones and did so much more.

I have some childhood stuff but it's basically f*cking nothing compared to what happened to me as an adult. Or is that more minimizing? Regardless, it wasn't enough to make me develop PTSD - the adult stuff did that. I don't view my lack of childhood trauma the way you do, but I wanted to pop in and say that I try to minimize and dismiss things regardless, and you're not alone in having trouble with blaming yourself for your trauma.


I was abused as a child and consequently as an adult, both were traumatizing, both hurt me and caused me pain....neither trauma(s) were my fault. It simply isn't helpful to compare your trauma to others or your recovery both are part of a very personal journey.

I sometimes refer to my childhood trauma as being severe and prolonged but that is to call it what is was (and in reference to C-PTSD), but it is not to shame others or to make others think that they don't have a right to be here, have every right to be here and I am happy that you are here and talking about the things that make you uncomfortable...because it can lead to healing on a deeper level to know that you belong.

Trauma is trauma, it is all hurtful and well, ....traumatizing. There is no greater or lesser traumas, there is simply trauma. Hang in there and I hope you learn to forgive yourself and know that you are welcome here as a fellow survivor.


You can gaurantee that if you had no limbs, no food, no water and had been abused as both an adult and a child that there would still be someone worse off than you.

That is why comparisons can be so unhelpful. When we compare trauma (and hell I do it internally a lot) we usually imagine ourselves in that situation. My friend breaks a nail? I imagine breaking a nail and i think no big deal. Say my friend has major EDs and is body dismorphic. For her, breaking a nail could have an impact I cannot begin to imagine.

Abuse (of any type) is different. It is damaging to anyone. Comparisons in my above example are prevalent in everyday life but potentially damaging.

When you are talking about trauma (either crit A and/or chronic c-ptsd inducing) it is more than damaging to compare. You have been through hell. Own it. Don't minimise (is that an avoidance strat?) Because you can't minimise. Abuse is toxic to human beings. Period.
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