Trauma and the Holidays
If the “most wonderful time” of the year is a time that has you less-than-jolly, don’t worry you’re not the only one. The holidays can be tough, especially for those of us that have a history of trauma.
When the whole world is telling you that it’s time to be happy, it’s time to be grateful, and it’s time to drop everything and go be with family… it can hurt. It can hurt if your trauma is manifesting in a depressive episode, which makes happiness feel hard to come by. It can hurt if your trauma has led to a loss of resources, making gratitude feel just out of reach. And it can especially hurt if your family are the ones who caused you harm, which can make this time feel particularly lonely.
Happiness, gratitude, and family don’t look the same for everybody. And there’s no correct or incorrect time of year to hit “peak happiness.” So if the holidays tend to get you down, that’s okay. Your journey is your own. Be kind to yourself, and take comfort in knowing that a new season is right around the corner!
Abigail Schoenberg, LMFT