Trauma manifests itself into a false self to minimize the abuse by conforming to our abuser’s vision of who they need us to be. The false self is made up of layers of protection to keep us from feeling the shame and humiliation we endured. We portray a false image of ourselves to the world, in need of receiving the positive mirroring faces we need to experience as a child. We use external validation in an attempt to heal our emotional wounds.
Authenticity becomes the process of peeling away the layers of defenses, exposing ourselves to ourselves by confronting the false self. Abandoning the family system and the role we played in that system. We challenge the beliefs we adapted to survive. We call ourselves out when we are not genuine. We look at the patterns we have developed to get our needs met by others and ween ourselves off the external validation and numbing out.
We strip ourselves down to the feelings we have been avoiding, find that hole in our soul, and learn how to start filling it independently. We do this by the practice of self-soothing. By not mood-altering and self-abandonment, we get in touch with the feeling we need to heal. It is through these feelings we find the path to authenticity.