Various factors need to be taken into consideration when assessing the risks that surround someone’s vulnerability to trauma. Not all traumatic events will lead to emotional and psychological damage, because not everyone will see a traumatic experience as traumatic.
Some of us may bounce back because we accept what happens, as part of life’s journey. Others may be completely devastated by something that appears less upsetting by someone else. There are, however, a number of risk factors that make some of us more susceptible to psychological and emotional trauma.
If we are already under a lot of stress, have suffered a few losses, or come from a dysfunctional family, we are more likely to be susceptible to trauma. A new situation may also traumatise us, if that situation carries similar characteristics of an earlier experience, or trauma appears to have come from childhood. Problems with trauma should always be addressed.
Any experience that a child sees as traumatic can have a severe and long-lasting effect on them, which can spill over into their adult lives, creating a foundation for further trauma. Childhood trauma happens when a child’s sense of security and safety becomes compromised.
The following situations may also play their part. A parent splitting the family, an environment where children are made to feel unsafe or unstable, a serious illness in the family that compromises the family.
Verbal, physical or sexual abuse is also associated with trauma. Not being looked after properly, being bullied or neglected at home and in school and domestic violence.