What is trauma?
For many asylum seekers who have ended up in Germany, while the physical journey may be over, the road of suffering seems to know no end. Unprocessed experiences of war, persecution and violence in your homeland and often life-threatening encounters along the way can leave profound marks on your psyche.
Many of these things that have happened have a traumatizing effect. In the process of arriving in, orientating yourself and coming to terms with life in our society, such harrowing experiences can often be suppressed. However the ensuing sense of fear and powerlessness does not simply disappear, but rather resurfaces after a while, usually with increasing momentum.
People share that they suffer from nightmares or that they are hardly able to sleep at all. Some struggle to meet the demands of daily life; they feel exhausted and lethargic. They complain of having too many feelings, or otherwise of not being able to feel anything at all anymore, including happiness. Others suffer greatly from the pictures in their minds - terrible scenes from the past that return again and again.
These people commonly withdraw, because they feel unwell and are unable to make sense of their own behaviour.
In all of this it is so important that people are not left alone to deal with the psyche’s responses, and that they know change is possible.
There are a variety of therapy options and help programs that can aid and support the processing of traumatic experiences.