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The Inner Voice of Emotional Pain

Jan 10, 2018 11:41AM ● Published by Don Short

We all have relationships we deeply value, whether it is a close friendship or a life partner we made a commitment to through marriage. Trust is a significant part of all healthy relationships. When this trust is violated, broken, the emotional pain one experiences can be extremely painful. For some, this can be an overwhelming and traumatic personal experience. The distress and anxiety caused by these events affects our physical health along with interfering with our day to day activities. Obsessive worrying prevents us from having a good night’s rest while feelings of hopelessness and helplessness rob us of our joy of living.

The three cores of emotional pain:

Betrayal/Loss – When we lose the trust in a relationship, we lose the heart of the relationship. The feeling of loss can be overwhelming, opening the door for intense feelings of loneliness in a person.

Shame – These are the feelings of negative self evaluation and social judgments coming from family members and others in the community.

Fear – This can range from feeling unsettled to feeling terrified. These feelings can vary from day to day or week to week.

Our emotional pain can vary from day to day and even minute to minute. Feelings of rejection and abandonment can create an overwhelming sense of personal loss. Our emotions create thoughts which can lead to an onslaught of negative scripting, anger and intense feelings of rejection. Certain people, places, words and objects become triggering. Anything that can be associated with the emotional pain of this traumatic event can serve as a trigger.

How does one heal from these events? As a therapist, I have found some individuals have a very difficult time healing after this kind of hurt. They get stuck on trying to understand it from the other person’s perspective. They ask themselves, “I never could have done this to them, how can they treat me this way?” A lot of emotional energy is spent trying to make sense of it, but a satisfactory explanation is never found. A person, by result of this, can become stuck in an exhausting cycle of trying to make sense of things; feelings of intense anger, hurt and shame are common. This cycle goes on and on, day after day with no end in sight. We yearn for someone to feel and understand our hurt, our pain, but this never seems to happen. We feel stuck!

In therapy:

One needs to process the core of their emotional pain. EMDR Therapy is very useful in doing this.

One needs to realize the person will NEVER understand the intensity of your emotional pain.

One needs to realize the triggers will always be there, but with EMDR, these triggers can be downgraded.

One needs to develop a process of letting go, creating healthy boundaries and forgiveness.

Our emotional pain is our responsibility. We should never make our emotional healing dependent on someone else. Healing will begin once we remove the toxic thoughts from our mind, increase positive self talk and develop healthy boundaries. By owning up to our thoughts, feelings and actions, we become more in control. This journey of healing can be difficult, but it is not impossible. God bless and I wish you well.

 Don Short is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT). His practice focuses on clients with marriage, relationship and family issues. To learn more contact 337-781-4565 or

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Family, Health, Acadiana Life Don Short Therapy Mental Health shame loss betrayal

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