“We have learned that trauma is not just an event that took place sometime in the past; it is also the imprint left by that experience on mind, brain, and body. This imprint has ongoing consequences for how the human organism manages to survive in the present. Trauma results in a fundamental reorganization of the way mind and brain manage perceptions. It changes not only how we think and what we think about, but also our very capacity to think.”Bessel A. van der Kolk
“Trauma” is a big buzzword these days. Its definition has grown from war-related PTSD to nearly every kind of overwhelming event imaginable as we grow to understand more about how these events affect the body and psyche.
In our case, we can think of trauma as any kind of event, or multiple events, that you are having difficulty accepting or making sense of. It may mean you think about it all the time, turning it over in your mind every which way. It may also mean that your body tries to manage the overwhelm, with panic attacks or dissociating. You might find yourself acting strangely in normal situations or overreacting. You may have trouble focusing at work or connecting to your partner.
Effective trauma therapy isn’t about reliving or retelling the traumatic event. Instead, after building skills to manage overwhelm, we’ll work in small, manageable fragments to overcome the traumatic reaction. In therapy, you’ll come to understand how the trauma affects you on a daily basis. We’ll develop a personaized strategy to manage your symptoms and triggers so you can thrive. We will acknowledge and honor how those behaviors may have saved your life, figuratively or literally, while finding new ways to respond to life’s ups and downs. Most clients find this process very empowering.
Most importantly, good trauma treatment isn’t just about getting “over” what happened. We also want to help you get in touch with your loving, badass, amazing self and come out of the process feeling better than before.