I have nightmares and flashbacks about a past relationship

I was the one who ended it, and I'm so glad I did. It was the best decision I made in my life. But how do I stop the nightmares and flashbacks? It is creating a wall in my current relationship.

Candice Conroy, LMHC
Candice Conroy, LMHC
Find relief from anxiety, depression, and trauma.

 A lot of times when you're experiencing nightmares and flashbacks, it can be a sign that you haven't fully processed what happened. Our brains tend to replay scenes in our life that we wish had turned out differently or  in an effort to desensitize us to it.  If you are comfortable with it, you may want to consider sharing what you're experiencing with your current partner so that he is able to understand what's going on. Also, you may want to consider  what parts of your past relationship you blame yourself for. This can be a difficult task to undertake on your own, and the help of the therapist may be necessary to sort through the memories in a safe way.  Typically however, flashbacks and nightmares are a sign that the trauma  of what you went through needs to be addressed.  it's a great thing that you were able to have the courage to get out of that relationship and you should be proud of yourself for that.  You may want to  begin therapy to address these traumatic memories and help you to sort through any conflicting emotions you have about it (i.e.  Feeling like it's your fault for not recognizing the abuse or getting out of the relationship sooner, blaming yourself for being  " The kind of person who gets into an abusive relationship ",  or believing that you somehow caused your ex to abuse you in some way.)  These types of beliefs and feelings can prevent us from moving past traumatic experiences and a trained therapist can certainly help you sort through them. 

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist nor does it create a therapist-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.

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