As you're probably well aware, there are connections between the experiences you had growing up and the way you go about life as an adult. For instance, if you had a traumatic experience as a child, such as physical or emotional abuse, it can follow you into adulthood through your thoughts and behaviors. But for some, a phenomena in the brain occurs where they just can't seem to remember their traumatic childhood memories. It doesn't happen for everyone, but according to experts, certain thoughts you have may indicate that you have repressed childhood memories.
"Repressed childhood memories or amnesic blocks can be indicative of trauma," psychotherapist, Rev. Sheri Heller, LCSW, tells Bustle. "When I do an initial consult for someone seeing therapy I typically ask if there are periods in their early life in which recall is sketchy or inaccessible."
Since that energy is blocked or repressed, Heller says those memories will typically convert to different forms such as episodic weeping, phobias, aggressive explosions, or pervasive anxiety, among others.
"The repression of negative childhood memories contributes to subsequent re-victimization as one is subconsciously acting out the dynamics they have repressed with the subconscious hope to master the trauma," Heller says. That's why some people with repressed memories may respond with compulsive and reckless behaviors or addictions. Even if they're not fully consciously aware, they may act out in certain ways because of experiences in their past. It may not happen to everyone, but it does to some.
So how can you tell if you have any repressed negative childhood memories? Your thoughts may clue you in. Here are thoughts you have that may indicate you are repressing trauma. And if you find this to be the case for yourself, remember that it's not your fault and it's important toseeking help from loved ones or a therapist to alleviate the pain.
Warning: This articlecontains information about childhood trauma and assault, which some may find triggering.