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murderedbyaname t1_j61gv9t wrote

(anecdotal, remove if not allowed). My Neurologist said it's possible for childhood abuse to show up in MRIs even through middle age. I read a study a few yrs ago about altered brain chemistry and suppressed immune response development in children who experienced even emotional and verbal abuse. The more research the better.


OrganicPumpkin9156 t1_j624aaz wrote

I've read somewhere it manifests similarly to Traumatic Brain Injury - not surprising really, if you think about it.


28thProjection t1_j62c71j wrote

Imagine having both? It’s a fun double whammy.


PoopIsAlwaysSunny t1_j65938s wrote

The best part is it’s all invisible so no one believes it’s really an issue. Hooray!


28thProjection t1_j65f60j wrote

Oh, they try and have their cake and eat it too. If they can’t outsmart you you’re not injured, if you are injured you’re the one that hurt them, they’ve never done anything to deserve that, no wait that was supposed to trick you into stopping you’re hurting of Nazis like me OWWIE!


littlebirdblooms t1_j63v7ng wrote

Indeed it is.


OrphanDextro t1_j63wu3m wrote

Or CSB and verbal abuse. Yet, my parents just don’t understand why I might have coping mechanism problems. My condolences as well.


IamWisdom t1_j645tw3 wrote

I think I have both, a lot of days aren't fun anymore along with drug use and alcohol abuse I think was caused by it.


GayMakeAndModel t1_j62k2k0 wrote

‘The Body Keeps the Score” It’s a book someone wrote. Can’t recall the author.


dercheeseburger t1_j62lybr wrote

‘The Body Keeps the Score’ by Bessel Van Der Kolk. I read this book. It’s really good and (as a traumatised kid), I felt really sad and heavy when I realised how our minds and bodies absorb our experiences and respond accordingly, and in ways many of us don’t realise or understand.


georgelopezshowlover t1_j63j5g6 wrote

Great book. Author got fired for abusing employees though. Despite researching trauma, he didn’t mind causing some.


Somnia_sleeps t1_j63v4xb wrote

Read The Body Never Lies by Alice Miller instead. I think The Body Keeps the Score guy stole her research too.


[deleted] t1_j63w3nl wrote



provisionings t1_j647jop wrote

It is.. but this latest generation of child raisers seems to have broken the cycle more than any other generation, of course kids are still abused and that is very unfortunate but parents these days do seem a lot more capable of showing love to their children. Boomer parents weren’t so much. They weren’t home ever, they were pretty much done with us as soon as we turned 18 and hardly any of them saved for college…


Chuggles1 t1_j65tpyp wrote

My brain is a potato according to this study. Correlation does not mean causation. Also can, but not definitively. Research is useful, but the stigma towards foster youth is already bad enough.


PuerhRichard t1_j65bgho wrote

Makes sense the last bit about people who are allergic to everything. They appear to be homeschooled in my experience.


half_in_boxes t1_j61hnd4 wrote

We've known this for at least 15 years. Prolonged early childhood abuse (occurring before the age of seven) can cause changes in the brain at the epigenetic level. It often presents as comorbid developmental disorders. I remember seeing a temporary exhibit about it in the museum of natural history in Manhattan sometime in 2006/2007.


OrganicPumpkin9156 t1_j624e0g wrote

Do you remember exactly what changes it makes? Because "prolonged early childhood abuse" may as well be my middle name.


half_in_boxes t1_j63ahku wrote

The one concrete thing I remember is that it affects the reabsorption of cortisol. I know that it's also casually linked to developmental disorders like ADHD and ASD as well as behavioral disorders, but I don't remember how exactly those are caused. Something to do with how input is processed during a strong sympathetic nervous response.


Majoranza t1_j63d0hk wrote

Huh… that makes a lot of sense now…

I really feel as though my ADHD started off as minor and genetic, but manifested itself more and more until I got diagnosed in middle school, and now I’m a depressed ball of anxiety and stress with a dash of PTSD (haven’t had a flashback in almost a year! Progress!)And I still can’t stand people being behind me at all…


blog-goblin t1_j63cr1w wrote

I've read a few articles about the amygdala and HPA axis becoming overactive. There may also be effects in the peripheral nervous system associated with autonomic regulation, although the polyvagal hypothesis is somewhat controversial.


metaironic t1_j62tqdo wrote

I recently read Robert Sapolsky’s great book on stress, ‘Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers’, originally published back in ‘94. One of the things he talks about is stress and trauma in childhood and the physiological changes it can cause, some permanent and some reversible if dealt with in time. Some of this had been known for decades when he wrote the book, and he does a great job going through the research and the history of its discovery. Can really recommend it to anyone who hasn’t read it.


lizzolz t1_j6374b0 wrote

Could growing up in a household of constant alcohol-fuelled arguing that teeters on the edge of violence, between two parents, constitute as child abuse? Surely witnessing that can have long lasting impacts on a child.


blog-goblin t1_j63bzng wrote

Yes. Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) include substance abuse in the home.


half_in_boxes t1_j63ao74 wrote

Yes, that absolutely counts, especially if there was no childhood resolution (e.g. therapy, removal to a safe home.)


murderedbyaname t1_j61xnq9 wrote

I didn't know research went back that far. When I looked for studies maybe 4-5 yrs ago, I could only find one or two articles that were recent then.


anniecet t1_j62ekoc wrote

… due to a heightened awareness of their environment, due to being exposed to high levels of threat at an early age.

This line resonates.


GeekFurious t1_j62vvf2 wrote

I was a bouncer a long time ago and I would home in on problem people quickly and couldn't figure out why my co-workers seemed so clueless about the obvious signs.


anniecet t1_j64agci wrote

Do you also find yourself weirdly comfortable now as an adult when you find yourself in threatening situations while everyone else is freaking out?


GeekFurious t1_j64rfth wrote

Yep. I definitely feel strangely comfortable in insane situations. When I worked IT for a big bank in NYC they used to have me give really bad news to people (like, we lost five years of your work due to a stupid tech) because when people were super upset, I calmed down.


anniecet t1_j6592z4 wrote

I’m the one called to deal with overly aggressive customers, drug use and other outrageous behavior at the shop I run. The unofficial bouncer, if you will. I’m a 5 ft 4/125 lbs “cute” pipsqueak and none of that makes me even the slightest bit nervous.


autistic_bard444 t1_j61r9b4 wrote

repeated abuse (physical/sexual/psychological) pre-16 falls under complex ptsd

suffered almost my entire life it.

the change in people who are afflicted with it is incalculable :(

so yea. ive known for decades my brain is fucked.

but at least i went to a doctor and got help back in the end of 2021

quite a bit of data also suggests neglect, physical/sexual abuse can lead to adhd and other learning disabilities.

cptsd, ptsd, bp2, mdd, adhd (full host of learning disabilities), asperger's. several tbi's. sexual abuse. physical abuse. physical trauma.

words cannot express how i hate not being a normal person my entire life


JaydedMermaid3D t1_j61stpe wrote

Been on r/cptsd a lot today. If you haven't joined I recommend it. I find it helpful since cPTSD is just so isolating


OrganicPumpkin9156 t1_j624krt wrote

I've heard the mods are themselves abusers who infiltrated the sub to find victims.


JaydedMermaid3D t1_j6456il wrote

I've never experienced that. Honestly I rarely even see mods comment.


OrganicPumpkin9156 t1_j652fui wrote

They rapidly ban commenters who call them out on their manipulation. "Rarely even seeing" is the point.


bisforbenis t1_j62f2lr wrote

I might be sharing something you already know, but maybe you or other people reading this thread don’t know about this, but have you ever looked into DBT (Dialectical Behavioral Therapy)? It can be helpful for a lot of things but is really optimized for Borderline Personality Disorder, PTSD, and Complex PTSD.

It requires a bit more time investment than other kinds of therapy (usually a 1 hour session a week plus a 1-2 hour separate segment called skills training, which a lot of places offer virtually nowadays) but it’s not too crazy of a time investment. There’s been a lot of research verifying that DBT is really effective, especially for these sorts of things. Basically a while back, there was CBT (a pretty common type of therapy), but they found it fell short for people with Borderline Personality Disorder and Complex PTSD especially, so they really reworked it over a number of years and developed a more optimized approach for these things

I just wanted to share this since with therapy, you tend to see a bunch of acronyms and styles of therapy and it’s easy to get lost and overwhelmed with what they all mean, but for Borderline Personality Disorder and Complex PTSD, it’s very much the gold standard for efficacy. Granted, finding a therapist you actually mesh with and like is still very important, but it’ll be very worth looking into “Full Model DBT”

I’ve learned a lot about this as someone close to me has struggled with the sorts of things it’s especially good for, and I hope maybe this can help point you or someone else reading this some help


External-Tiger-393 t1_j635d5a wrote

DBT can help a lot with symptom management, and is a good starter therapy for CPTSD for this reason, but EMDR and inner child or schema therapy will do a better job of addressing the root cause of a person's symptoms.

It's unfortunate that there isn't a one size fits all treatment for stuff like this, but at least stuff like inner child therapy, DBT distress tolerance skills and journaling are all pretty helpful for me at this point. I'll take what I can get. (I went through DBT like 8-9 years ago, but I started seeing a trauma therapist in October.).

I personally found the ABCDE theory from Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy to be helpful as well. The basic idea is that a lot of mental health issues, grief, trauma, etc are caused by our reaction to or our beliefs about certain events in our lives; so if we change how we see those events, we can eliminate the problem. It's at least been very helpful for me in terms of reframing stuff that's happening now, and putting it into perspective.

Emotional accounting can also be helpful, but for some reason journaling has taken over this skill for me. I was never really able to make it the consistent habit that I wanted it to be.

Disclaimer: I am far from healed, or even doing well, but I'm doing better and this stuff is a large part of why.

Edit: I also went through a CBT workbook for PTSD, and that also helped a lot with symptom management.

Edit #2: to clarify about DBT -- it's helped my self esteem and self image a lot, but it has never been able to do much once I get triggered and that switch flips in my brain that takes me back to my past. I still use DBT techniques for symptom management, but they're not my only tools.

I think it helped me a lot, but what's worked has been kind of ingrained into my behavior, and what hasn't worked has been dropped. I still think that it isn't going to be as good as other therapeutic modalities to treat the core issues behind CPTSD, but your mileage may vary.

If someone has CPTSD, they should see a trauma therapist; and someone specializing in trauma will be able to help you go in the right direction. For a lot of people, DBT is at least a pretty darn good start. It is 3:30 AM and I am probably contradicting my own earlier points.


hellfae t1_j656lb6 wrote

EMDR saved my life, I have cptsd and ocd.


External-Tiger-393 t1_j658rly wrote

I'm gonna ask my psychiatrist about whether my insurance will pay for me to get EMDR and see my current therapist at the same time (since I'd have to see someone else for EMDR). Fingers crossed, I guess.

I'm pretty much open to anything that will realistically help, not that EMDR is anything crazy. I like that it's basically a way to take advantage of loopholes in how your brain works. It's neat.


OrganicPumpkin9156 t1_j624qj1 wrote

My condolences. I, too have not being normal - and being ruthlessly punished for not being normal my entire life, which caused my CPTSD.


bepp98 t1_j63jy5o wrote

“words cannot express how i hate not being a normal person my entire life”

The normal coping skills you’ve developed are to abnormal situations in your life. Not the other way around. You’re surviving and you’re doing a damn good job at it.


Delet3r t1_j6382jb wrote

Got a source on ADHD being caused by abuse? Because I've only ever found studies showing that it's not due to abuse.


birchwoodmmq t1_j64wyl5 wrote

This article title literally states that abuse causes attention (and perception processing) altered brain functions.


Delet3r t1_j65pghe wrote

Yes, Hypervigilence. That's not ADHD.


autistic_bard444 t1_j65x2q2 wrote

i accidentally posted links to a comment above




this is primarily because of how ptsd/cptsd will rewire the brain. so that someone who did not actually begin life in early development as lear4ning disabled, ocd or adhd, ends up being stuck as neurodivergent due to how the ptsd rips the brain apart


a couple good examples of this. in the season 3 of the boys, mothers milk talks about his bipolar and ocd and trauma because of how someone threw a car through his house and killed his family. in doing this, he ends up having to do an ocd ritual in order to maintain and facilitate that actionary. because he believes if he did this, things would have been different


the legend of korra also touches on this when amon terrorizes korra. her trauma responses are many, and even by the end of the series she is NOT well, nor who she used to be.

that hyperarousal and hypervigilance, mixed with shame and guilt bring many people to their knees mentally


the book that was adapted to hulu for catch 22 by joseph heller also offers several classic examples of how people change with ptsd.


the show mash, is also a good study on ptsd across a broad spectrum of characters. korra, catch 22, and mash are both two of my comfort shows because of the ways they each tackle ptsd in characters


Delet3r t1_j66kz7p wrote

Except plenty of people have ADHD without those issues. Itoesbt make sense. If trauma caused it, they'd have been shouting it from the rooftops decades ago.


autistic_bard444 t1_j66pfcn wrote

trauma makes the predisposition to it come forth

genetics still plays an important role itself, due to gene expression.

just like gestational exposure of air pollution to a mother can increase the odds of autism spectrum disorder.


Causes of ADHD

Brain injury.

Exposure to environmental risks (e.g., lead) during pregnancy or at a young age.

Alcohol and tobacco use during pregnancy.

Premature delivery.

Low birth weight.



lemme tell you traumatic brain injuries suck

had one at 9, 17, 20 and a huge one at 37 (the perils of being a lumberjack. no one gets out of that industry unscarred unless they only work one day).


Prenatal exposure to polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAH, a component of air pollution, raises the odds of behavior problems associated with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, at age 9, according to researchers at the Columbia Center for Children's Environmental Health at the Mailman School of ...Nov 5, 2014


boys tend to have the greatest risk of inheriting or ending up adhd

air pollution is liable to be one of the main causes of why so many more kids are being born neurodivergent

never mind all the chemicals in the water, especially here in illinois with the coal ash and pesticides/herbicides which end up back in the water supplies (this is also why kidney disease is the largest death machine in illinois)

brains are sensitive organs. it does not take much to mess them up

and ptsd/cptsd/neglect/sexual abuse/physical abuse can mess up a young mind like a grenade will mess up an apple tree


[deleted] t1_j61i775 wrote



AbsoluteEva t1_j62z8qo wrote

It's nice to see that science catches up to what most trauma survivors already know.


Mom2Mickey t1_j63ld22 wrote

Yup. I left my abusive household in the mid-90s and to this day I am hyper vigilant everywhere I go, always on the lookout for heavy footsteps or other signs of "incoming". I've finally made progress on not apologizing for everything I do, to include just existing. I also feel the need to make sure everyone around me is comfortable at all times.

My egg donor really did a number on me.


GGMU5 t1_j61yquk wrote

Does bullying at school/friends considered abuse as well?


OrganicPumpkin9156 t1_j624tyo wrote

Yes. More than half my Complex PTSD is due to bullying to the point of terrorism and the social isolation that comes with that.


legomolin t1_j62jbhw wrote

I wonder why there's no discussion of ADHD in the paper. Seems relevant.


Delet3r t1_j637vz7 wrote

Pretty sure they've shown that abuse doesn't cause ADHD.


TheNWTreeOctopus t1_j63p0yr wrote

Who is they? Honest question. I've been doing research on links between generational trauma and anxiety/developmental/learning disorders. Every part of a mother's environment and internal state effects their children. Sure, abuse doesn't cause ADHD. Depending on who and when the trauma is inflicted but it sure seems like it can contribute to it on a biological level.


Delet3r t1_j63qksc wrote

Don't remember exact studies. I've just googled it a few times and everything I find says "ADHD not caused by abuse".

Even anecdotally, I know plenty of people who dealt with abuse, but don't have ADHD. Anxiety and depression but not ADHD.

ADHD is an executive function disorder which also is what happens when people are under extreme stress. It's why ADHD is often mistaken for anxiety etc.


legomolin t1_j640c9p wrote

A causal effect doesn't need to be 100% to still exist. Not saying it is causal, just don't think it's fully known yet.


legomolin t1_j64035p wrote

Do you have any references that abuse can't cause ADHD?


legomolin t1_j63zs9o wrote

I'm definitely all ears for sources on this. As far as I know there is a clear two way association between ACE and ADHD in longitudinal studies, but the size of an eventual causal effect is still very much unknown. The symptom overlap with childhood trauma is big and ADHD is a diagnosis that's defined symptomatically.


Delet3r t1_j6408a2 wrote

My kids showed signs of ADHD super young, and we were the "don't spank kids it's abuse" type family. Our parents kept telling us to spank them, leave them alone at night to sleep etc.

We weren't perfect but definitely not abusive.


ADHD is often REPORTED as ADHD by parents, but misdiagnosed.

ADHD is executive function disorder, similar to high levels of stress. That's why parents confuse stressed kids with ADHD kids.


adastraperabsurda t1_j66858u wrote

Well, from what I have read about ADHD it’s mostly genetic but also brain trauma (child abuse).

ADHD effects executive functioning which is directly related to how someone deals with stress or emotional regulation. So, a parent with ADHD may be more prone to spanking their kids or yelling at their kids- thus abuse may be more prevalent in their family history and “normalized.” And as ADHD parents tend to have ADHD kids, the emotional regulation issues create a vicious cycle.

This being said: a lot of the articles I have read don’t argue causative (mostly correlative) because of the genetic factors at play.

Recently I’ve been thinking that a lot of my parents behavior and addictions are all symptoms of adhd. So there is that.


n3w4cc01_1nt t1_j64g2x4 wrote

a lot opf people with adhd were abused as kids. mostly narcissistic abuse like gaslighting and yelling at them for no reason. probably do it to blame their stress or inefficiency on their kids.


masonw0629 t1_j62aygm wrote

had an abusive father, not sure f i have faith in my own life


ScarletOWilder t1_j62wkhh wrote

And as a C-PTSD and ADHD fellow struggler, I can highly recommend EMDR. A painful but very effective intervention in my experience, alongside DBT.


Billielolly t1_j632wib wrote

A friend recently recommended EMDR to me since I've found talk therapy often makes my depression worse as negative memories continue to hold the same potency for me no matter how long it's been or how much I've talked about it. I haven't had a chance to do it since I don't feel like I have the support system in place yet, but I do hope it's more effective for me.


ScarletOWilder t1_j63d17j wrote

It works on a deep level and faster than talk therapy. I think you are very wise to ensure you have a support system in place. After EMDR sessions, I often felt very raw and emotional, and it was tough to deal with that alone. But I did and it certainly sorted out the core issues. Go well, OP.


qwertysthoughts t1_j64t1hy wrote

EMDR was a literal life saver for me. It sucked ass, it was difficult, draining, and definitely hard to relive past experiences. But I can do normal everyday things now that were difficult before because of triggers.


Im-skynet t1_j62j7q7 wrote

Well that explains it


halfmeasures611 t1_j62ic9y wrote

i was beaten as a child for years. can someone please summarize this study and tell me what it did to me?


gotoline1 t1_j62ixwo wrote

Is there any link between untreated CPTSD and being someone who purposely seeks out risk? Like applying for the most austere deployments or feeling at home while under theat?


blog-goblin t1_j63ces9 wrote

Yes, for some. Others become hypervigilant and go to great lengths to avoid risk.


SmellyBaconland t1_j63cgtk wrote

Well dang. We're different, and that's that. The purpose of studies like this isn't emotional reassurance, but it's good for me in that way. It's good to be reminded that there's a reason for some of how I am.


chuck3436 t1_j6465q3 wrote

Ngl, I experienced multiple levels of trauma as a child and reading that it affects me as an adult is like reading that milk comes from cows.


popsblack t1_j64560c wrote

I'm 65 and recently my doc prescribed nortriptyline for nerve pain and irritable bowel resulting from diabetes, and she thought, PTSD from childhood trauma.

It woks some in those areas but for the first time in 50 years I'm not plagued by constant adrenaline dumps. I've never felt depressed but have always felt physically anxious. On top of the pressure to be cool and in control, feeling ready for fight/flight underneath is hard. And yes I did have a somewhat rough paper route.

Anyway, if you feel that unwelcome adrenaline dump regularly and in totally inappropriate situations, perhaps you should talk to your MD. I feel no emotional side effects other than a much appreciated calm and freedom from the unwelcome near-panic. I take 50mg which I understand is a low dose.


bongholelicker t1_j647i0e wrote

This must seem like an 18 carat run of bad luck, but really the game was rigged from the start.


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glydy t1_j61ajxa wrote

Maturity at 18-20 is really telling in this sense in my experience - some grew up much to early and it's so clear in environments such as first year uni / college. Working alongside older people who still haven't had that growth


Beatless7 t1_j64b8ou wrote

I was abused hard-core and have trouble with perception big time.


Isaac96969696 t1_j65eenk wrote

Dont stupid researchers understand the gravity of posting such nonsense? Youre giving people, who may not have any issue, something to worry about.


insaneintheblain t1_j62pc95 wrote

I’m pretty sure this had already been established.

But whatever gets you grant money, I guess?


Clavister t1_j63q23g wrote

Fascists create fascists.


-downtone_ t1_j62fsuv wrote

What about 18 year olds getting blown up in war? I wonder what effect that has if they survive. Aside from the combat wounds I mean.


FluffySharkBird t1_j61t7xn wrote

Wait so if you're abused after the age of 15 you're fine then?


Predawnbread t1_j6300uo wrote

No but less likely to have observable changes at the brain level / genetic level and more likely to live a normal life