A Small Drop Of Insight About Victims’ Trauma
By Tim McGuinness, Ph.D. – Anthropologist, Scientist, Director of Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc.
An Insight about Scam Victims and How To Help
One of the great challenges that we have seen in long-term victims/survivors of romance scams (and all relationship scams) is that they never return to exactly who they were.
The trauma of the experience is always with you.
Not dominating your every moment like it is for new victims, but always in the background waiting for those triggers that still remain.
We have seen this many times in survivors and how it can affect their relationships long years after the scam ends.
The important lesson for every victim/survivor is to never lose sight of the traumas that they have experienced in life. Never lose sight that new challenges and stressors can rekindle triggers long dormant,
Most of us will never have the presence of mind to ask ourselves why we are reacting to pressures and triggering moments in life, yet this is exactly what we need to do. Being mindful becomes an essential permanent requirement for everyone that has suffered a significant trauma.
Strangely, we have seen how victims/survivors seem to build up resiliency as they go through recovery, yet when they think they are fully recovered and stop engaging in the things that got them there, resilience diminishes again.
Even after years, small things can get blown out of proportion, but by always remaining mindful you can analyze why it happened and reinforce your resiliency.
This is the life-long lesson that everyone should learn about trauma – it never really goes away, we all just learn how to manage it. But like the devil, convincing us that he does not exist, so too does trauma slide back into the deepest crevices of the mind only to reemerge when we least expect it.
Everyone carries this dormant virus in us – our past traumas just waiting for the right triggers to emerge again regardless of the years that have gone by.
However, each of you also carried the vaccination against it in the front of your brain called mindfulness.
When the amygdala triggers defensiveness or anger or fear, just be mindful of the emotions and use the skills you have learned to understand what was the cause of the reaction so you can work on preventing future reactions.
Triggers will always be with us. Emotional reactions are always a part of our minds, the amygdala never gives up easily – it always keeps some part of those reactions buried deep inside. But you can learn to minimize them, and with proper insight quash each one as it emerges, so that you have fewer and fewer out-of-control moments as you travel in time through the future.
By not doing these, we slowly cut ourselves off from the people that matter, the resources we need, and the opportunities that the future would bring.
We all are reactive beings, but we are also intelligent creatures capable of controlling our outcomes,
We hope you learn the lessons that will allow you to navigate your Yellow Brick Road and learn to chase away the Flying Monkeys!
May your future be bright and that you always have lanterns that you can throw into the deepest darkness