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Am I allowed to start being upset and getting help for emotional abuse 3 years after it happened?

172 Answers
Last Updated: 03/20/2021 at 1:53am
Am I allowed to start being upset and getting help for emotional abuse 3 years after it happened?
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
Moderated by

Terrence Sawyer, MS Counseling Psychology

Drug & Alcohol Counselor

Social disorders counseling social psychology, substance use disorder counsel

Top Rated Answers
April 2nd, 2020 2:31am
Yes of course you are. Sometimes it takes a long time for us to process the emotions related to emotional abuse. Sometimes we don't even realize that the abuse is happening while it's happening. Even if it's been five, ten, or fifteen years, pain and trauma is not a linear thing. Healing is also something that is non linear. Allowing yourself the time to heal and figure out what you need to do to best move on is important, but so is taking the time to process what happened. Your feelings are valid and you deserve to get help regardless of the time it has taken.
April 2nd, 2020 9:21pm
Of course you are! Everyone processes certain experiences at different times and if its takin 3 years, thats totally ok! Reaching out and getting help when you are ready is the only thing that matters. I think it's great that you are even able to open up and talk about what happen. That takes a lot of courage and strength to even get help. Just remember you are totally allowed to feel upset and get help wether it took 3 years or even 10.
April 4th, 2020 2:54am
yes, of course you can. sometimes things and events take a while to actually set in, especially if it was a very difficult experience for you. sometimes this happens if a person blocks out a memory of something traumatic that happened to them, like emotional abuse, and then something will trigger a memory and it’ll all come back and the person will be reminded. the trigger can be anything - someone raising their voice, a photo, a song but whatever it is it somehow relates to the memory and maybe that’s what happened to you. you have every right to be upset though, no matter how long after the event it is.
April 8th, 2020 6:50pm
of course you are allowed to feel these emotions and ask for help three years later. often times, in situations involving abuse, the shock and anger of it happens when looking back. there is no such thing as an expiration date on getting help when you need it most, especially for such a traumatizing experience like that. it is hard to say and almost impossible to know when the emotional impact will hit you hardest, but there is no need to be ashamed that it happens to be three years later for you. you should feel very proud of yourself that you know how you are feeling and are allowing yourself to get help.
April 23rd, 2020 1:13am
YES! everyone goes through abuse, trauma, and terribly shitty things in a different way. And a lot of people do not feel compelled to even want to think about it, let alone talk about it, for a very long time. You are always allowed to feel wht you are feeling at any moment in time. :) Do not let anyone make you feel diminished for 'waiting too long', as you are a human who needed time to heal, and healing is as unique as the situation that needs to be healed from. Something else to realize is that it may have taken a long time to even understand and fully piece together what happened in a whole, clear (ish), and sometimes pieced together way. Embrace that you have gotten to this point, take a breath of fresh air - and know that better days are ahead, and are even in front of you right at this moment. -
May 2nd, 2020 1:55am
I feel that no matter how long ago or no matter how intense/small the situation or abuse was, it’s still ok to get help. Not everyone is going to be affected/react to abuse the same way. Heck, I’d say it could even be an entire lifetime before the aftermath starts to kick in. But regardless of time or intensity, I think it’s never too late or too small to get help. Like I said before, everyone reacts to these things differently. Also, the way you feel then doesn’t usually change the way you feel now, so once you do get help it doesn’t matter how long you waited for. Overall, it’s important that you get help at some point in your life, whenever you feel it’s the right time.
May 2nd, 2020 12:00pm
Of course you can! a lot of the time it takes us a long time to work out what we are doing and get in the right mindset, it is evident that you are currently in the right mindset, so really, whenever you are ready you should be allowed to move on and close this chapter yourself, on your own terms. so, in summery you are allowed to be upset and seek help 3 years after it could be 10, 20 or even 50 years after what matters is if you are ready and you, are happy to close the chapter!
May 27th, 2020 3:42pm
of course, you are, trauma can last longer or often show up a while after due to shock. Its never too late to get help :). You're strong and don't deserve to go through it alone. Often if you don't get help it can last longer and lead to other issues and I'm sure that won't be easy. Feel free to contact the listeners we are all super willing to help, and even the 7 cups therapists who are there to help you when you need someone more qualified! Remember it's not stronger to combat it alone it's strong to get the courage to get help because that takes strength :)
May 28th, 2020 11:04pm
Yes, of course, emotional wounds can remain with us for years, some of our wounds were carried with us since childhood. It is never too late to get help and start healing, No matter how late. Sometimes we are bottling up emotions and it is affecting us in ways we can't imagine, but something happens that makes us realize we are hurt and we need to heal. In fact, it is great that you are planning to seek help. Please never feel bad, guilty or responsible for any abuse that occurred and don't feel bad for feeling sad or needing help, you deserve to be happy and pain free.
June 13th, 2020 6:11am
Certainly! You feel what you feel, and there are no rules about when it's ok to feel it. There is no time limit on suffering - and you are allowed to get help whenever you wish. If it is coming up in your thoughts a lot recently, it shows that you are still affected by it, and it still needs to be acknowledged and dealt with. There are people here on 7cups who have had similar experiences - chatting with one of them may help, and they can direct you to professional resources as well. Do what you need to move past it - no permission required. :)
June 28th, 2020 6:28am
You are 100% allowed to feel that way. What happened affected your life probably hard and its hard to just forget about it. Its normal and completely understandable if you get upset and want help over past trauma. Don't be hard on yourself for wanting help, if it hurt you and made you feel bad, you need to do what is best for you and what will make you feel your best and safe. Everyone gets help and its nothing to be ashamed of, its a natural thing to get help. And you are allowed to feel anyway after something bad affected you.
July 2nd, 2020 1:46am
Of course you are. Emotional abuse is not like breaking your toe, having it set wrong, and then not being able to change it after some time. Emotional abuse is something that can stay with you for the rest of your life and it's never too late to look for help. If there has been a delay in your response to it (for example only getting upset now) it could be that you've suppressed the feelings associated with the abuse and now you're ready to confront them. If you feel like you need help, don't hesitate to reach out to any of the listeners on this platform!
July 5th, 2020 4:56pm
Of course you are! Sometimes, it takes that long and even longer to realize that what you were going through was abuse. Especially when you're in a manipulative situation, it can be very hard to identify what's going on until after it's done and you've had time to recover. Nobody should give you permission or "allow" you to express your feelings, those are up to you and you only. If you finally realized that what you went through was wrong, it's perfectly acceptable to be upset and want to get help. Even if you possibly knew that what was happening was wrong, it was never your fault. Getting help is always an option, no matter how long it takes.
July 10th, 2020 3:42am
Absolutely! Often, people do not realize that they were being abused until much later. Getting help is important and amazing! You should be proud of yourself for recognizing your needs and acting on them. All of your feelings and reactions are valid. You are allowed to react however you want. You have the right to be upset for as long as you need no matter how long ago the abuse took place. By getting help you are one step closer to healing and moving on. You deserve to feel better and heal fully!
July 13th, 2020 12:51pm
Of course- the pain of emotional abuse doesn't go away until you get help and express your feelings about it. That can take as long as needed. Getting help is the most important thing to do, and I know personally how it can affect people. Once you express to someone how you feel, you can find out how to deal with the issue, and then you can be free from that past. It will feel like a weight off your shoulder, and you will be more confident to trust people. So yes, you are allowed to be upset and seek help even 3 years after emotional abuse occurred.
July 22nd, 2020 12:34am
Of course, you're allowed to feel upset about emotional abuse. Emotional abuse can cause really deep emotional scars and it's normal to feel that pain 3 (or even more) years after. You have every right to get the help you need to deal and process that abuse, whether it be through talking to a close confidant or reaching out to a therapist. It's better for your mental health to let out your frustrations and express them to others than to hold them in and let that pain build up. One of the first steps to recovery is to address the pains that you experience and learning to process them.
July 22nd, 2020 8:31pm
Seeking help for past traumas is always a good thing as that severe emotional abuse can contribute to low self-esteem and depression in the long term. The time lapse between the emotional abuse and therapy should be short but the victim may not be prepared to share their feelings or even talk about the abuses. Usually the victim of emotional abuse need time to process the hurt before being ready to talk about it objectively. Do seek help for any troubling behaviours or thoughts that you may have. Do not try to tackle these alone. Identify supportive people and tools to assist you to untangle from your emotional wounds.Never give up on yourself.
July 22nd, 2020 10:41pm
There’s never a “right time”. Your emotions don’t have a time table. That’s why it’s so important to get help when you are ready. If you’re ready now go and get the help you need. You have every right to be upset and in pain. Don’t be afraid to speak up for yourself and the hurt you’ve been through. For some people it might take days to get help, others it might be years. Some may never be able to talk about their trauma. What’s important is that you recognized that maybe talking to somebody may help you.
July 25th, 2020 5:50am
It is okay whenever you realize it. It is the beginning of acceptance on one's part. Sometimes we just repress the emotions that feel unpleasant to us and keep on going forward. Though it makes you feel that everything is okay, not acknowledging emotional abuse is like ignoring the elephant in the room. By choosing to be blind to the abuse, you are not able to be an objective judge of the situation and thus get more embroiled in a situation which is not good for you. It is good to realize this, no matter when the realization comes. Some lessons take time. If you are asking for help, it means you are acknowledging the issue head on now. Its a start to becoming your whole self again.
August 9th, 2020 6:32am
Abuse is something that deeply affects someone for life. Yiu have every right to seek support 3 years later, even 10. What matters is that you recognise that you need help and that you want to free yourself of this abuse that keeps affecting you. I reached out for emotional abuse 3 years later too so it's nothing strange and you are not alone. Emotional abuse, like any other form of abuse is traumatic, especially in childhood but not only. It can lead to depression, anxiety, PTSD and many other disorders. And all those need professional help. The sooner the better but it's never too late.
September 4th, 2020 4:49pm
Yes! You are it's never too late to express feelings and trying to get help from them. It's not uncommon for people to do that. It just means they are ready to talk about it. Most people can't talk about it right after it happens because it triggers memories they can't control and it puts them in a panic state. And most people think they are the only ones but you aren't alone. No one is ever ever alone. There are people just like you that went through the same stuff. Just keep that in mind when your sad
September 6th, 2020 9:17am
you're allowed to be upset and get help for abuse that happened to you at any point in time in your life. maybe at the time, you couldn't even identify it as 'abuse' but now that you have, it is okay to be upset about it and the fact that you're getting help is great- not all of us are strong enough to own up what has happened and i'm proud of you for speaking up about it. don't let other's opinions affect you, because only you have lived through your life and you have every right to be upset about an injustice done to you.
September 12th, 2020 11:43pm
It is never too late to get help for anything in your life. Some people may hold back because they feel uncomfortable reaching out for help, but it is safe to say that the sooner you reach out the more benefit you will get out of it. If you are ever unsure or don't feel comfortable, try starting by reaching out to a close family member or friend. This may be a great way to start and if you feel that there help isn't enough, you can reach out to a professional. You shouldn't feel embarrassed about reaching out.
September 13th, 2020 3:14am
Yes, you are allowed to feel upset. Sometimes individuals do not realize the situation they are in until after. It is okay to feel upset even after 3 years. Getting help for emotional abuse after year is completely normal. At times, when individuals began to realize the situation they were in, they began to feel the need to open up to someone once they are fully over the situation. Even after 3 years, it is never too late to seek for help or consulation. Sometimes we need let things out to someone we trust in order to fully let go.
September 20th, 2020 3:36pm
Yes 100%, sometimes we don't feel like we can be upset about a situation when it happens, it may not be safe to do at the time. You are perfectly valid in your emotions, and you are totally allowed to get help for something that you've experienced in the past. It doesn't matter how long it's been, if you feel like getting help will help you then that's your decision. Getting help is a good step to take in any situation, and speaking from experience, being emotionally abused can really mess you up after a while. I know that when I got help it was something that I wish I had done sooner.
September 25th, 2020 1:46pm
Everyone processes and deals with trauma and abuse differently. One person may process it within 2-3 months and another person may process it within many years. Your emotions are still valid, as are your thoughts, even 3 years later. You should see it as a positive thing that you are getting help for the emotional abuse you have suffered. We could also set regular sessions up too if that would help. My recommendations: Regular sessions Regular support EMDR (if PTSD has been or is diagnosed in the future) Emotions management Help with positivity Journaling (writing down feelings) Mood tracking to see progress (high to low moods)
October 4th, 2020 2:49pm
There is no singular mould for how any one should cope with their problems. There is not one straight road to recovery. Everyone deals with their trauma's in different ways. For me as well, getting help 10 years after an event took place. You can get help for your emotional abuse whenever you want, even if it would be 40 years after it happened. Do whatever feels right to you, and especially remind yourself of how strong you are for getting yourself the help you need. It's a difficult path to take, but in the end you will come out stronger.
October 7th, 2020 6:03pm
From my personal experience, I believe that sometimes when we suffer trauma or abuse, we don't always recognize the effects of the trauma or abuse right away. That is why I believe a person should always give themselves permission to feel however they feel in the moment, and to allow themselves to seek help for it, whenever they feel that help is needed. Our emotions are unbounded by time, time is merely a form of temporal organization we impose on our lives, but that doesn't mean our emotions always organize themselves relative to time. If 3 years has passed and you don't feel right about what happened, or, what happened is negatively impacting your life, it is never too late to seek help for it.
October 8th, 2020 7:00am
Of course you are, there is no limit to how long it takes to register the trauma and pain of being abused. Allow yourself to feel these emotions, and take all the time you need to process them. Do not hesitate to reach out to a therapist or anybody here on seven cups. There are many forums and group discussions that are aimed at people who have been emotionally abused. Remember that everybody heals in different ways and it is totally normal to be numb to how you feel until years after the trauma. I hope that you get the help you need, stay safe!
October 11th, 2020 3:46am
Absolutely. Everyone processes emotions and feelings differently. Especially when it comes to trauma and abuse that you had no control over. There is no wrong time to process how you feel. Life isn't a race and there is no shame in taking longer or going faster in the process. Getting help would be a very good idea and path to take. Time may heal all wounds, but there will be scars, sometimes. The best thing about life is knowing that you can start over each day. Emotional abuse and memories of it can be downright awful. Getting help is always a great option to pursue. It helps you become the best you that you can be.