Bill Burr – Childhood Emotions & Mushrooms

It is easy for adults to walk around unaware of the profound effect their childhood still has on their adult life. Bull Burr talks to Neal Brennan about how an experience with Mushrooms made him conscious of the role his childhood experiences continue to play in his emotions as an adult.

Born William Frederick Burr, Bill Burr is an American comedian, Grammy award nominee actor, writer and podcaster. Some of his standup specials include You People Are All the Same (2012), I’m Sorry You Feel That Way (2014), Walk Your Way Out (2017) and Paper Tiger (2019). He has also been ranked in the Rolling Stone list – “50 Best Stand-Up Comics of All Time”.

It was like a profound sense of sadness. There wasn’t a beginning or an ending; it just was, and it was undeniable, and I couldn’t figure it out. I was like, what is this? Oh, this is how you felt as a kid.”

Once you are an adult, it is easy to assume that your childhood experiences are a thing of the past. You go through life unaware of how present your childhood is still in your present life. Until one day, you have a vulnerable experience that suddenly brings all these suppressed emotions and trauma to the surface. For Bill Burr, a mushroom experience was his aha! Moment.

Common signs of childhood trauma still present in adults include PTSD or problems forming attachments and maintaining healthy relationships. Some kids, like Bill Burr, grow up assuming that their traumatic childhood experiences made them better, emotionally stronger adults. This is not always the case.

I was of the belief that what happened to me as a kid didn’t bug me and that, uh, it was actually a good thing because I’m tough.”

In most cases, adults who experienced a traumatic childhood exist in the versions of themselves that they had to create to survive as children. When trauma is unaddressed, emotions are often ignored or suppressed in adulthood. Most people confuse the absence of these emotions on a surface level as a sign that they are past it, which is often not true.

Then I realized, oh, that was all wrong. That was what I became so I could deal with whatever was going on.”

Most depression, anxiety, Bipolar disorder, and other mental health disorder diagnoses show that they stem from a history related to upbringing and childhood. To be able to live and thrive in the best version of yourself, adults must address childhood trauma.

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