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Survivors of trauma often carry around a lot of shame. Shame can manifest in different ways, but it’s not uncommon for the person who abused or neglected a child, for example, to transfer what should be their shame onto the survivor. This can give the survivor intense shyness, embarrassment, and blame. If you have been through a traumatic event, you are not the one who is supposed to carry the shame. You deserve to let go off the intense nature of your feelings. You deserve the freedom to heal from your trauma. The Guest House can help.

It May Have Been Useful In the Past

Because of the trauma you have dealt with, you may feel ostracized from others. Thus, you might try to find any way to fit in and feel supported. You may try to bury the trauma deep inside of you so that you are not left vulnerable. Vulnerability is something that almost everyone is uncomfortable with, but for those who have dealt with trauma, vulnerability may feel excruciating. By drowning yourself in shame and trying to ignore the trauma, you found ways to fit in. While this intense shaming of yourself may have been useful in the past, it never allows your wound to truly heal. 

Borrowed Shame

Borrowed shame happens when the abuse or neglect that the survivor has dealt with comes at the hand of another person. The abuser should be the one to feel shame for their actions, but they often pass it on to the person they are abusing. They may make them promise to never tell anyone about the abuse and say that no one will believe them even if they talk about it. This puts all of the shame onto the person experiencing the trauma. If you are dealing with borrowed shame, you are not alone. You deserve to let go of that burden.

The Impacts

There are many impacts of trauma and shame for the survivors. A lack of trust after a trauma is not uncommon, which makes the survivor nervous around others. They put up walls to avoid being hurt in the future which can lead to the survivor having trouble forming intimate relationships with others. Survivors of trauma often also have trouble with boundaries. Although they may not be in immediate danger anymore, the survivor may have flashbacks of the trauma. This can leave them with all sorts of emotional scars, such as depression, anxiety, anger, and feelings of isolation. The survivors may turn to self-defeating behaviors such as substance abuse or self-harm in order to help them cope with what they have been through. If you are relating to these impacts of trauma, know that there is help out there for you. The Guest House is ready to help you overcome your trauma and recover from self-defeating behaviors.

Letting Go of Shame

The shame you’re feeling may feel like a dark cloud that follows you everywhere you go. You may have tried in the past to shoo the cloud away. Know that even though you are struggling, there is help out there. Letting go of shame won’t be easy, but it will be worth it when you feel the joy you’ll receive once you regain your life back. If you want to work on letting go of your shame, start by reassigning it. Realize that the abuse and neglect you have dealt with was not your fault. Assign that shame to the person who hurt you. They are the ones who should bear that burden. This will help loosen the grip that shame has on you.

Next, work on your relationships. Intimacy can be difficult with family and friends after trauma. Take small steps toward forming healthy relationships. This includes setting boundaries for yourself that keep you safe. Do not be afraid to ask for what you need from your support system. They are there to help you. You are worth it.

As the walls begin to come down around you, you’ll feel vulnerable. Trust that you have what it takes to get through the difficulty of vulnerability. Step out of your comfort zone and ask for help when you need it. Shame may linger, but it will be much more manageable.

Ask For Help

If you are struggling with shame after trauma, The Guest House can help. We offer so many different trauma therapy options that can benefit you. Our professionals offer individual and group therapy to help you work through your trauma and get to the light on the other side. We also offer psychodrama and art therapy to help you work through trauma in a different way. We know that everyone has their own unique story. We want to help you get to a place where you feel safe and comfortable. Your story doesn’t end just because you have experienced trauma because you are not defined by your trauma. You have what it takes to recover.


The Guest House is here to help you with life after trauma. Call our wonderful staff today at (855) 483-7800. We can’t wait to speak with you and help get you started on your recovery journey today. Call now to learn more about the programs we offer and what they can do for you. Your story isn’t over. Take the next step toward healing with The Guest House today.