Psych Central

Flashbacks a Problem?

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW


I am 14 years old & I got molested when I was younger by 2 cousins of mine. I have thoughts in my head that i try to not think about and I keep having flashbacks on the incident. I get angry alot & have really bad mood swings. Is this an effect of the molest or do I have a problem?

A. You seem to be experiencing flashbacks. A flashback essentially is a re-experiencing of a traumatic event. Being molested is obviously a very traumatic event. During a flashback, an individual may literally feel as though the traumatic experience is happening. Flashbacks are associated with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Flashbacks can be very disruptive. My recommendation is counseling. In counseling, you can learn to identify what triggers your flashbacks. Recent research shows that knowing what triggers flashbacks is an important step in preventing them. Therapy could also assist you in stabilizing your mood.

I would strongly encourage you to talk to your parents. Counseling has helped many thousands of people with exactly the same problems that you are experiencing. Counseling is the easiest, quickest way for you to gain permanent relief. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 22 May 2012

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2012). Flashbacks a Problem?. Psych Central. Retrieved on April 19, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2012/05/22/flashbacks-a-problem/

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