One of the major hallmarks of trauma bonding I see through my practice is the inability or the unwillingness to walk away from an abusive or obviously unhealthy relationship.
We may minimise their behaviour, take the blame, make excuses for them, try to change them, or give them numerous chances in the hope this time - they'll change. Trauma bonding occurs when our own unhealed traumas recognise and bond with theirs. This is extremely common and easy to mistake for being a twin flame or soulmate connection. When our unhealed traumas attach to someone else's - they feel deeply familiar. They feel like home - be finally feel seen and understood. And oftentimes, you've had similar experiences in childhood..hence both having similar traumas as adults. Trauma bonding can be extremely intoxicating, especially in the early stages - sweeping up the sexual chemistry and the fantasy… you can also lose yourself and your sense of judgement, often romanticising or ignoring the red flags. Being CHOSEN is wildly intoxicating to those with unhealed ‘abandonment, not good enough or self-worth’ traumas. The truth is that the twin flame dynamic (from what I have seen & heard thus far) is quite toxic and the connection is in most cases possibly a form of trauma bonding. I see a lot of this through my practice and in our community. And when these wounds are dissolved people get to see the dynamic for what it was and then are able to step out easily.I don’t explain any of this to my clients in these specific words but they eventually get it. You can free yourself completely once this trauma bond has been dissolved. The secret is in participating in healing your own inner child trauma, which in turn dissolves the trauma bonds and reduces the chance of ending up in another trauma bonded relationship.
So is it a twin flame relationship or another trauma bonding relationship? •Powerful sexual chemistry early in the relationship.This often clouds your judgement, your sense of self and ability or willingness to see the red flags. •You can't walk away even when you know the relationship is unhealthy or even abusive. •Love bombing, stalking their social media, over-romanticising or losing yourself in fantasies of a future together that are well beyond the stage of the relationship. •You can't stop thinking about them or talking about them. Re-reading their messages. •You put up with things you normally never would. Sounds familiar? Not everything you see or hear in social media is authentic & we all understand that bit right?
So I'm going to share something, when I heard about twin-flames for the very first time from an acquaintance - a married woman, a social butterfly on one of the social media platforms,I was disillusioned for awhile like many others. It took me a hot minute to unpack and see with clarity that it was possibly her lack of self-love that made her colour her experiences in a sort of dichotomous thinking (black or white thinking) where an individual is either a twin flame or nothing! This type of belief system can divide & break people when they begin to question their own self worth based on the views of a few others.This pattern is hugely disempowering and can lead to mental health struggles in a few.
Sometimes an entire community or even families can get wiped out with a handful of disillusioned people. My work involves reversing this & empowering others to believe in their completeness. (Forgiveness is easy when I realised that she just acted out of her own unresolved childhood trauma - there’s nobody that one cannot forgive if we learn to see the trauma behind their actions.But remember that forgiveness is always done for your own peace of mind and not to re-entertain someone who has repeatedly hurt you back into your life!)
I believe in living with a life-purpose larger than ourselves & that is what we must aim for in this lifetime.
Because the truth is that there is divinity in every person you meet.
Twin-flame or soulmate and everything in between & out-with - the only thing that matters is if you can take responsibility for your own healing and then subsequently how you contribute to the world .... living from your higher self.
Coming back to the topic at hand, the neuro - chemistry of love and attachment in the presence of abuse is so strong that the natural functioning of our brain can prevent individuals from just simply walking away..even though that may seem like the most logical solution. Trauma bonding is a type of emotional attachment that develops out of a repeated cycle of abuse + followed by positive reinforcement.
An example of a trauma bond is when a person may text you and say something really sweet or express feelings for you. And that makes you happy. They come on strong for you for a while, and then suddenly you don't hear from them for a few days. So now you're confused as to whether they like you. They finally end up contacting you again. You may go out on a date and have a fabulous time. And then you don't hear from them yet again, or just briefly. You call them and they seem distant. So now you're sad - convinced that they're not interested in you. That night, they call you and you feel a sense of relief. This inconsistent behaviour leads you to become addicted to the relief of hearing from them again. The ups and downs are emotionally addictive. And this is one of the ways in which a trauma bond gets created.
Why do we feel that our relationship with ourself is less important than our relationship with others?
Tips for healing a trauma bond 1.Observe.Recognise the patterns and dynamics - where have you compromised? Do you know your attachment style? 2.Pay attention to your emotions? Do you feel trapped? Unloved? Is there a push pull or love/hate dynamic? 3.Determine healthy boundaries. 4.Make a plan for how to respond in triggering situations and exit unhealthy cycles of interaction. 5.Focus on re-parenting yourself and self care. 6.Work on cultivating self love. 7.Set goals for yourself and focus on strengthening your life and support outside the relationship. 8.If necessary, distance yourself from intense relationships and drama to restore normal relating capacity. 9.Build and invest in healthy connections and relationships. 10.Get support. Find a therapist to help you identify and work through trauma. One of the most healing & nourishing things you can do for yourself is .. to take care of yourself in ways that you wish someone else would.