What is Trauma?
It seems the word trauma is used on a spectrum these days in our culture. We either laugh about it, talking about being embarrassed in 3rd grade by forgetting words to a speech, or what, for many people, is the more obvious trauma, like a car crash, invasive medical procedure or assault of some sort.
What if I told you anything on that spectrum should be considered a traumatic experience, and that such things seem to go away-if not stop our lives entirely?
In the conversation about trauma,
if it's a big deal to you, it's a big deal.
If you recognize any of the below, you may have some unresolved traumas we can talk about.
- intrusive memories of some event or experience
- sleep problems, which may or may not involve nightmares or rumination about the event
- habit of finding yourself in extremely dangerous situations over and over, or pattern of being victim of or involved in similar traumas over and over and over
- moods are volatile and all over the place
- predictably "triggered" by specific persons, places, memories, dates, things or smells
- avoidance of anything related to some event, even at high cost (for instance, refusing to drive by a certain location, inability to tolerate discussing an event or a certain person, complete inability to ride in a car or take a flight)
- memory impairment around a certain event or complete inability to access memory of a certain event (for instance, something you know for a fact happened that you were actively involved in, but you cannot connect with any memory of it)
I use a form of trauma treatment called EMDR, which is now the 'go to' treatment for psychological trauma. It is highly effective, brief, and extremely well-researched. (Here's a link to more info on EMDR.)