Photo by Luis Galvez on Unsplash

Trauma is when it is. But who decides?

Just the situation in itself is not traumatic. The internal makeup of the person who went through that situation decides if the situation was traumatic or not for him/her.

An accident, abuse, divorce, breakup, deaths, failures, financial losses, job loss, and many such situations in life can be traumatic for some and not for others.

However, in our day to day life, we use ‘trauma’ or ‘traumatic’ based on our assumptions. If someone was abused — mentally, physically, emotionally, sexually or in any other way — we automatically label it as “traumatic situation”. However, in many cases, people suffer through any kind of abuse and come out of it perfectly healthy or normal.

Slipping and falling down on a crowded street might be traumatic for some but it is not for many. So, should we laugh or ridicule or deny the person from letting this situation be defined as traumatic?

Similarly, we might assume and start expressing our sympathy or empathy towards a person who went through a situation which YOU thought was traumatic. So much so that we might end up forcing that person in thinking ‘Is something wrong with me, since I came out of it fine?’ 🤔


Situation X can be traumatic for A and not for B.

Situation Y can be traumatic for B and not for A.

So, next time when you are using these words ‘trauma’ or ‘traumatic’ try to give this a thought in the context of the person who went through any kind of situation. And if that situation was traumatic for the person or not. And if the person labels the situation he/she faced was trauma or not.

In the context of this picture above (I couldn’t find anything else around me right now that can describe what I just shared above 😜), there are three drawers. Now, assuming that all 3 drawers went through the same amount and force of pull & push. But, after a period of time, the plastic support of only the 3rd drawer fell off.

What it depicts, in context to what I wrote above, that the pulls & pushes turned out to be traumatic for the third drawer. However, 1st & 2nd drawers are were probably built a little differently or a little more sturdily from inside that those pulls & pushes did not affect them.

Instagram: @TheAbrarRaza




Counselling Psychologist | India |

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Abrar Raza

Abrar Raza

Counselling Psychologist | India |

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