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“Trauma can be a one-time event, a prolonged event or a series of events. Trauma that affects a community or a country is called collective trauma.” ~Odelya Gertel Kraybill Ph.D.

A Simple Test

Question? – Have I experienced trauma or is that relegated to serious abuse?

Test: Were you were born after The Fall in Genesis 3?

It’s a post-traumatic stress world. Time to for healing, growth, and some connections to your reactions and pain.

The following is an excerpt from Psychology Today with a description of both traumatic injury and developmental trauma :

See the article here

Psychological trauma is a response involving complex debilitation of adaptive abilities—emotional, cognitive, physical, spiritual and social—following an event that was perceived by our nervous system as life-threatening to oneself or others (especially loves ones).

Trauma can be a one-time event, a prolonged event or a series of events. Trauma that affects a community or a country is called collective trauma.

Traumatic injury shocks and changes all systems. These include:

  • Cognitive: The trauma affects the ability to process thoughts and make good judgments
  • Emotional: Looping with emotions of shameguiltfearanger, and pain
  • Physical: It affects muscles, joints, digestion and metabolism, temperature, sleep, immune system, etc.
  • Spiritual: The trauma affects our worldview, the lenses with which we see reality (typically so we see it as unsafe), our understanding and meaning of life, society, and the world
  • Social: The trauma affects relationships with spouses, family, friends, colleagues, and strangers (because it affects so many so deeply, it affects structures of societies)

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a set of alarm responses that occur when a survivor’s nervous system remains on high alert after trauma in order to protect against further harm.  The survivor’s alert systems respond to reminders of the traumatic memories as a threat. Often, additional triggers are added to a growing list of stressors.

Developmental trauma occurs early in life and disrupts normal sequences of brain development. As a result, other aspects of development such as emotional, physical, cognitive, and social are also impacted.

In the first years of life, the brain develops from the bottom upwards. Lower parts of the brain are responsible for functions dedicated to ensuring survival and responding to stress. Upper parts of the brain are responsible for executive functions, like making sense of what you are experiencing or exercising moral judgement.

Development of the upper parts depends upon prior development of lower parts. In other words, the brain is meant to develop like a ladder, from the bottom-up. So when stress responses (typically due to persistent neglect or abuse) are repeatedly activated over an extended period in an infant or toddler or young child, sequential development of the brain is disturbed. The ladder develops, but foundational steps are missing and many things that follow are out of kilter.