For victims of betrayal and abuse, the holidays can be extremely triggering. Here are our five top tips to surviving the holidays when you’re suffering from betrayal trauma.
5 Holidays Season Tips For Victims of Betrayal and Emotional Abuse
- Celebrate YOU. Holidays are typically shared with loved ones, but when your partner, or ex-partner is unfaithful and abusive, the holidays can be especially lonely. Rather than focusing on the loss of a marriage or the loss of love and intimacy within an abusive relationship, focus on celebrating yourself. Buy yourself a special gift, take a long bath, make a holiday food that you enjoy, spend time doing simple but healing activities that you enjoy.
- Write down your “Holiday Safety Needs” and share them with your support system. What do you need to feel safe this holiday season? Some women need to be exempt from holiday gatherings, some need extra support while their children are spending time with their abusive partner, others request that family and friends be willing to listen to and validate their feelings during rough moments. Whatever you need to feel safe can be communicated to others who will support you in your trauma.
Survive the Holidays By Getting In Touch With Yourself
3. Create new traditions. Many victims feel triggered by music, certain restaurants, even specific holiday decorations. Give yourself permission to purge triggering items, find new holiday music, and explore new places, creating new traditions for yourself as you begin your journey to healing.
4. Slow down and allow yourself to feel. When highly triggering situations arise, it is natural for trauma victims to try to drown out or numb out those feelings by ignoring them and staying busy. When you feel difficult emotions and painful memories coming to the surface, allow them to be expressed in healthy ways.
5. Join the Betrayal Trauma Recovery Group. The BTRG meets daily in every time zone and offers women a safe place to share their stories, process trauma, voice their difficult emotions, and ask important questions. Having a supportive group of victims who understand what you are going through can help make the holiday season less lonely and triggering.
Betrayal Trauma Recovery Supports Victims of Betrayal and Abuse
At BTR, we understand how difficult the holidays can be for victims of betrayal and abuse.
Know that there is a community of incredibly courageous women who are ready for you to join them and share the burden of your pain and grief.
Give yourself the gift of community and empowerment: join the Betrayal Trauma Recovery Group