Do Childhood Traumas Have Life-Long Consequences on Women?

adult children of parents with mental illness mental health mental health coaching Dec 16, 2022


You've probably encountered a lot of difficulties in your life as a businesswoman. Additionally, there is a significant possibility that whatever mental illness you have was caused by childhood trauma. The National Alliance on Mental Illness estimates that 18.5% of American adults (18.4 million people) have a mental illness. And over 60% of those adults do not attend therapy for their illnesses. It's critical to seek help if you are a businesswoman who experienced childhood trauma so that you can take good care of your mental health. 


What is Childhood Trauma?

Childhood trauma is defined as any event or set of events that endangers a child's feeling of safety and well-being. These events can include physical, emotional, or sexual abuse; neglect; witnessing violence, or having a parent with a mental illness. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that "almost half of U.S. children have had at least one traumatic childhood experience". Unfortunately, childhood trauma is all too common. The National Institute of Mental Health states that children who endure abuse or other traumatic events are more likely to face mental health issues later in life.

 When dealing with childhood trauma, a certified mental health coach can be quite helpful since they can point you in the right direction for coping. Following are some of the effects of childhood trauma on women:


Early first births or first child outside of marriage

 According to a study conducted by the University of Southern California, the following are some of the elements that contribute to childhood trauma: 

  • Emotional neglect
  • Abuse, both physical and sexual
  • Alcoholism or mental disease in the family
  • Absence of a parent owing to divorce/separation or jail
  • Death of a parent 

They discovered that the more trauma women were exposed to as children, the more likely they were to have an early first birth (before the age of 25) or a first child outside of marriage, both of which were highly associated with poorer health by the age of 40.

 Trauma has an impact on emotional control, impulsivity, and the ability to build intimate relationships. Childhood Trauma has previously been connected to unsafe sexual conduct, adolescent childbearing, and unwanted pregnancy. This study provides information on the association between early and non-marital childbearing and later-life health concerns.


Childhood adversity increases the risk of cancer in women

 Another recent study found that childhood trauma is associated with an increased lifetime cancer risk in women but not in males. This provides information about early-life treatments that may pay health dividends later in life.

Their study, which took into account smoking and other factors, discovered that people who had experienced physical, sexual, or emotional abuse were more likely to develop cancer.

 The University of California researchers point out that women endure stress at a higher rate than men, and sexual abuse can expose them to the use of drugs which can lead to cancer-causing infections like HPV. The researchers note that women who have experienced childhood sexual abuse may avoid cervical cancer exams, and they advocate for more non-invasive methods.

 People who have experienced trauma may find comfort in their bodies and regular medical checkups with the support of a certified mental health coach to reduce the chance of disregarding any underlying illnesses.


Higher incomes may protect women's health from the effects of early adversity

Another study found that lower-income women are more vulnerable to the health effects of childhood adversity than higher-income women.

After accounting for age, race/ethnicity, marital status, education, income, and degrees of childhood adversity, they discovered that reporting one or more chronic conditions were more likely among people with greater levels of childhood adversity. The likelihood of reporting one or more chronic diseases is increased by around 10% for every unit increase in the number of adversities experienced. A household income at least twice the poverty line reduced the adult health effects of childhood trauma.

Diabetes and high cholesterol levels were found to be the most common chronic illnesses associated with family trauma in their study.


Child abuse may have the greatest impact on health later in life

Child abuse may have a stronger impact on adult health than other adversity or family dysfunction.

A study found that the health hazards associated with domestic violence, parental divorce, or incarceration were nearly totally explained by adult socioeconomic conditions. However, they discovered that child abuse (physical, emotional, and sexual) was highly associated with many adult health hazards and has been proven the most damaging for women.


Children of mentally ill parents are generally more prone to developing stress and depression in later life

When performing a normal stress test, researchers have found that babies of mothers who experienced any type of mental illness have physiologically more pronounced indications of stress than babies of mentally healthy mothers. Researchers worry that these babies' significantly increased pulse rates could cause emotional strains to be imprinted on the infants as they grow.

Healthy growth is greatly influenced by the mother-infant relationship, especially in the first few months of life. As children grow and see their mothers struggling or behaving in a way they are not supposed to, these children develop traumatic memories that haunt them later in their lives as well.

Some mothers, especially those who are mentally ill, have trouble controlling their children’s negative affection, which is thought to lead to insecurities in the kids as they get older. Your stress levels will therefore be affected if you were raised by mentally ill parents.


Contact Dr. Margit Gabriele Muller, an award-winning author and a certified mental health coach, if you or a loved one has an unfortunate past and wants to overcome the childhood trauma and move forward with their lives. You deserve the best!



Dr. Margit is a Certified Mental Health Coach specializing in Inner Dynamics, Professional Certified Coach by the International Coaching Federation ICF, Master Life Coach, NLP Master, Certified Mindfulness Practitioner, award-winning author, sought-after speaker, and falcon doctor.

She's passionate about helping businesswomen with childhood parental mental illness trauma by supporting them by "Making peace with your past" online course with private coaching sessions and creating a new positive, empowered, resilient, and authentic YOU in three months.

Dr. Margit hosts a free biweekly mindfulness and meditation group called "Peaceful Mind Group" that is delivered virtual via zoom.

Dr. Margit believes that coaching with pets and horses opens the way to a new kind of empowerment and healing. Her award-winning and inspirational book Your Pet, Your Pill™: 101 Inspirational Stories About How Pets Lead You to a Happy, Healthy and Successful Life enchants, motivates, enlightens, and fascinates the readers with stories full of inspiration and positivity. 

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Dr. Margit's books

Your Pet, Your Pill®. 101 Inspirational Stories About How Pets Lead You to a Happy, Healthy and Successful Life

Your Pet, Your Pill® Workbook. A Self-Discovery Guide About How Pets Lead You to a Happy, Healthy and Successful Life

Practical Handbook of Falcon Husbandry and Medicine

Modern Veterinary Practice Management. A Systematic Approach to Creating and Operating a Successful Veterinary Practice