Can You Really Be Free?

2 min readApr 12, 2024

I see a lot of content posted about triggers and hardship and symptoms and living with CPTSD but I don’t see a lot of stories or messages showing us what the other side looks like.

I remember waking into a trauma group when I was 26 or 27. I was a wreck. On heroin, horribly suicidal, self destructive in almost every way.

Right away, I noticed a sort of commonality among the women — they all seemed terminal. They had completely resigned to their life as it was and seemed unwilling or unable to imagine a future much different than their present.

They were all childless and talked at length about how they would never have children of their own because their symptoms were too bad or they were too afraid of perpetuating their childhood abuse or both. They talked about avoiding relationships which enabled them to avoid triggers.

This all seemed so defeatist to me. So tragic. And many of these limitations they spoke of were actually internal limitations. Not external. But they couldn’t see it.

I heard so many justifications We might be holding on to justifications but the truth is that when we haven’t learned to manage and heal our CPTSD symptoms, making our world small is pretty much our only defense against triggers that we can’t control.

Healing might involve knowing, but mostly it’s about changing, taking action, practicing, and strengthening your ability to re-regulate yourself. It’s about learning to form full and loving relationships with other people and set boundaries, and to stop sabotaging yourself with blind or destructive choices that cause waste and tragedy in your life and the lives of others.

It’s about taking risks, pushing and challenging yourself and holding yourself accountable.

Memories and emotions are important & relevant to healing, but without real work and change in the areas of re-regulation, re-connection and self-supporting behaviors, memories and feelings can’t take you where you’re trying to go — which is to a place of freedom.

And freedom does exist.

There is another side and everyone can get there- but the road only goes one way. It’s uphill and it’s slippery as hell. But I promise, it doesn’t go forever.

B 🤍

Originally published at on April 12, 2024.




We write openly about our very traumatic childhoods. Understanding. Understanding. Unquestionable understanding. That's the message God has for you always!