48 Journal Prompts to Address Childhood Trauma

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**Content Warning: This article discusses trauma and mentions specific traumas that may have occurred during childhood.**

The article is developed in partnership with BetterHelp.

Healing trauma is not easy, especially if it occurred in childhood. However, trauma can significantly shape your mental health, so healing should be a priority. Many people take on this difficult journey themselves, opting for self-care activities that promote inner healing. One activity that can promote significant healing is journaling. 

Journaling is a great tool to help you process the memories and emotions that resulted from the trauma. It is a great way to release your pain and gain some sense of peace. However, it may not always be easy or clear on how to start this healing journey. This article offers a collection of journaling prompts that will help you address your childhood trauma. 

Journal Prompts To Help Process And Address The Trauma

The first thing you need to do is come to terms with the trauma and reflect on it. For example, what were the emotions you felt, and what are you still bringing with you to the present day? Below are some prompts that will help you dissect what happened and how it made you feel. 

  • My greatest fear during childhood was…
  • My parents made me feel…
  • I felt loved and understood by…
  • I felt unloved because…
  • The person I needed love from most was…
  • I hated it when…
  • The emotion I felt the most during childhood was…
  • When my parents were angry, they would…
  • When I was angry, my parents would…
  • When I was sad, my parents would…
  • The person I blamed the most for my problems was…
  • I deserved to enjoy my childhood and not take the role of…
  • I forgive myself because I wasn’t equipped to deal with…
  • After the event, I remember…
  • During the trauma, I felt…
  • My childhood home felt…
  • I was most angry at…
  • I felt shame when…
  • I wish my family understood that…
  • It’s not my fault that…
  • I don’t understand why…
  • I wish that the person that hurt me would…
  • I wish my guardians had…

Journal Prompts To Learn And Move Forward From The Trauma

No matter what we have gone through, there is always something that we can learn or take away from our experiences. By processing traumas, we can learn how to avoid them in the future or care for ourselves better if they occur again. Below are a few prompts that can help you reframe the trauma and take essential lessons with you. 

  • Did I realize that I was experiencing trauma when it occurred?
  • Did I do anything back then to care for my well-being? 
  • What do I feel about the trauma now?
  • What dark and negative emotions am I still holding onto?
  • Am I still holding onto anger or resentment? 
  • Who do I blame the most for the trauma?
  • Are holding onto these emotions doing me any good?
  • Is this trauma holding me back?
  • Are their unhealthy ideas about myself as a child?
  • What negative thought do I have about myself as a child?
  • Am I doing anything to address the emotions that come up?
  • What triggers the emotions to come up? 
  • What is holding me back from moving forward?
  • How can I choose to move forward?
  • What can I learn from the experience?
  • What have I learned about myself from the experience?
  • What can I do to prevent a similar trauma in the future?
  • How have I become a better person?
  • Is there more healing that needs to be done? 

Journal Prompts For Managing Triggers

No matter where you are on your healing journey, there is still a good chance that you will encounter triggers from time to time. Many items, places, situations, or people may inadvertently trigger a fight or flight response. 

Even if you are far along on your healing journey, you should give yourself some compassion for encountering triggering situations. One great way to do that is by journaling about your triggers so you can learn to manage and heal them as well. Below are some prompts to help you with these triggers

  • What caused me to experience these emotions?
  • What specific emotions am I feeling? 
  • Am I experiencing any negative thoughts about myself?
  • How am I identifying with the trauma?
  • What am I doing to cope?
  • How am I engaging in self-care?

Final Thoughts On Journaling For Trauma

Trauma is one of the most difficult mental health concerns to heal. However, journaling is a great way to help you on your path to healing and happiness. If you aren’t sure where or how to start, these journal prompts can help guide you on your journey to find some sense of peace. For more guidance and advice on healing from childhood traumas, check out the resources found at BetterHelp

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