Tag Archives: reblogged

Being an EMDR Trauma Therapist Teaches You a Lot and Most of It Is Good

Yes! This.

Go With That

I’ll start with what sucks.  People do astonishingly terrible things to other people–unbelievable, unspeakable, and completely fucked up things.  This happens all the time and on every street.  Trauma happens in virtually every family.  A fair chunk of trauma is caused by people who claim to love the people that they hurt.  Many of the most severely traumatized people I have worked with had extensive contact with modern safety net services throughout their childhoods, with repeated foster care placements that resulted in round after round of additional childhood sexual trauma inside the systems designed to protect them.  Many of my clients have never had a single safe person, a safe place, or any safe time.

In the vast majority of cases, trauma doesn’t end in childhood.  It certainly doesn’t end with the person becoming my client.  Trauma is alive in my clients because so little of it has ever been…

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Damaging things adults say to kids (link) 

Damaging things adults say to kids… http://erinjanus.com/6-psychologically-damaging-things-adults-say-to-children-all-the-time/

To this day, I still have trouble crying, let alone doing it in front of anyone (and how this was challenged yesterday as I grieved the death of a favorite pet both as she was being put down, and a few hours after)… 

Another one that sticks with me too this day, and prevents me from explaining myself or saying much at all most of the time was “don’t talk back” (similarly final as the “because I said so” in the article). There was no defending yourself, clearing up misunderstandings, or speaking at all while being reprimanded. You took the wrath and punishment regardless of fairness, and you simply did what you were told…

Great article on another aspect of hypervigilence

Trauma Makes you Live in a Backwards World

Meanwhile, used to terror or violence, no big challenge ever seems big enough. You miss the warning signs of the big problems because you are focused on avoiding the small ones. Cause and effect in backwards world get disconnected from reality. Even when there is proof around you, you don’t see it, you don’t believe it.

This is a great article. It explains so much about how trauma can cause a person to miss the big stuff because they are so focused on avoiding all the little things that might mean problems.

healing complex trauma (goodtherapy.org link)


The myth of the teenage temptress (link)


how patient suicide effects psychiatrists (link)


Shared from WordPress

A Letter to My Daughter — From Your Trauma-Recovering Momma. – http://wp.me/p2ohnp-3h4

make rules for yourself (a link)

I saw this about grief, but it can also be true for depression, especially the part about platitudes (and simple things you used to enjoy) being grating…

Also important: the part about remembering to eat. I lose my appetite when really depressed (comes after the stage of eating every comfort food I can get my hands on).


Shared from WordPress

Healing Quotes Littles 567 – http://wp.me/ptHcr-7bC

What I wish people knew about ptsd (reblogged link)

What I wish people knew, too – http://wp.me/p4w6Vc-hk

My attempt to express my stress… through Harry Potter Images ;)

I like these. Must try it myself next time…

Dearest Someone,

When times are tough, when times are dark, and when times aren’t at all fun I guess we draw upon the things that we hold closest to our heart in order to find something to hold onto. Photos of my family, photos of my friends, and knowing I have an amazing support system of incredible, fantastic people all give me something to grip onto tightly. They are my safety net, they are what I clasp when things are too tough, when I’m slipping away slowly and the depth and darkness of PTSD have got the better of me.

Because, at the end of the day I’m slowly starting to realise and accept that I have achieved incredible, surreal things. From speaking at the Houses of Parliament to holding on when things have reached there spikiest, toughest, most brutal, horrifiying (almost the end) moments. I am made of tough stuff, we…

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powerful read (link inside)

A friend posted this on fb… powerful read on domestic violence relationships…

please read with caution, as it might be triggering for some.

5 things an abused women wants you to know.

Do You have Athazagoraphobia?

An interesting concept to think about.

I used to chalk my belief up to a weird perversion of object permanence. I guess this kind of is exactly that. I tend to believe if people don’t see me and interact with me regularly, they forget me. I get the impression it actually happens. I also fear that people find me really annoying and distasteful to be around. I have trouble reaching out to friends and family because I worry that 1) they hate me, and because of that, they 2) consciously try to forget me or remain away from me.

Lemme tell you, it frustrates my friends. I can’t tell you how often I get asked why I didn’t call or come by… How do you explain that you feel like people would rather gouge their eyes out than have to spend a moment with me?

There was another part that stuck out to me: the fear of forgetting. I often hoard memorabilia, and I journal incessantly in an effort not to forget more than I already have. People call it materialistic or anal, but I keep hoping an object connected to a memory will keep the memory alive. When so much of my past is a huge blank, I grasp at anything that may help me to not forget… Sadly, it doesn’t really work. I go back and read journals but cannot connect to them or remember accurately what I was talking about. I look at items from my past, and have no clue what they were from, or who gave them to me. I take pictures all the time hoping photographic evidence will trigger a memory, yet so much is still lost. It’s not as bad as it had been before college, but it’s still there. One of the worst memories to have lost is my first date with my wife. I know what she has recited to me over the years, but the rest is super foggy. I have snippets of moments from the night, but most of it is gone. It’s no reflection on her or the night (because I’m still with her, and we went on a second date relatively soon at my initiation). It’s just “the story of my life”…

But I digress. This is an interesting blog on a phobia I had not heard of before, but one that makes perfect sense to me.


Discussing Dissociation

Drawn by ... On deviant Art. Drawn by rhyme-my-name.deviantart.com


I have learned a new word today.


Athazagoraphobia is the fear of being forgotten, ignored, or being replaced.


Ooooh boy, what a powerful word that relates to intense feelings held by soooo many dissociative trauma survivors. And since abandonment and neglect is often a huge and prominent part of the trauma history, is there any wonder?

First, let’s learn more about athazagoraphobia.

Here is a quote from http://www.fearof.net :

“Athazagoraphobia is a rarely discussed phobia. It means the fear of forgetting or the fear of being forgotten or ignored. Thus, Athazagoraphobia is of two types or has dual components: it might be seen in dementia patients in their early stages (or patients suffering from other medical conditions where memory loss occurs) where they fear forgetting their own identity and other things. Alternatively, it may be seen in spouses or caregivers of Alzheimer’s/dementia patients…

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how to direct readers to a random post on your blog

in case anyone else wants to allow for “random viewing”


is this possible?


1. Go to Appearance -> Menus

2. Create a Menu, doesn’t matter what you call it.

3. Click Links and type your WordPress URL and after the URL make sure you put ‘?random’ and then type your Link Text which can be ‘Read A Random Post’ or whatever you want.

4. Go to Manage Locations and put your menu in the Header Menu.

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Trauma Informed Organziations

I thought I had re-blogged this, but it isn’t showing up on my site…
Something really important for all organizations…
Funny how it’s very in-line with something my wife was saying about a new potential job: everyone has their reasons and their struggles… Maybe even retail needs some trauma-informed training… (PS – My wife rocks because she is the one wanting to point this out to everyone at the new job! See, I haven’t totally spoiled her and made her hate the world…)

Out of the Rabbit Hole

crystal light

I am currently working on a certification from the University of Buffalo on Trauma Informed Organizations.  I have been studying trauma related materials for a while. It has been fascinating and helpful  healing for me.

What is a Trauma Informed organization? It is an organization that has taught trauma informed care from the person who answers the phone to the CEO. It is the basis for policy and procedures. Trauma informed agencies and organizations are totally aware that every contact with a patient makes a difference in their reaction to the care being offered and also in their ability to get well.

For example, a person with mild PTSD is coming to see a doctor for stomach upset. The admission person snarls at them because they are lacking some information on their admission form. She tosses the clip board at the patient and says snottily, “you need to fill out…

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The Impact of Domestic Violence on Children (link to an article on goodtherapy.org)

Another article that resonates, so I wanted to share.

With my recent trauma processing with TM, so much of this is in the forefront of my experiencing. Even the unintentional trauma of watching those who are supposed to protect you go at it brings up a fear that is so shattering. It’s nice to see that there is understanding growing in the field. I remember trying to explain some of the effects to clinicians, and it simply not being understood for the full impact. This also explains a lot around my issues with attachment. Yes, members of my family were not abusive, but those who were overshadowed their efforts… It was never safe… Poor TM, she is getting the brunt of those fears lately.

found at GoodTherapy.org right here.

getting “profeesional” – books on grief (for kids in kid bodies or kids in grown-up bodies)

Funny how when I get overwhelmed with my own stuff, my “profeesional” side kicks in. I take a detached and intellectual jaunt through all of the professional resources I keep around… It’s just much easier than being mired in my own emotional mess.

Anyway, I stumbled across this list of books for kids that deal with grief. I may have to find some of them (especially the pop-up ones, OMG, pop-up books are the best!!!!!… ok, putting my inner child away now).

the list is on brainpickings.org. It’s a site I’ve liked articles from in the past, but never really ventured through. One day it might be worth the wander.

anyway, the list can be found here… One that piqued my personal interest was The Flat Rabbit(public library) by Bárður Oskarsson


brilliant way to explain consent

…though quite a bit sad that it must be explained this way.

full article found here.

If you’re still struggling, just imagine instead of initiating sex, you’re making them a cup of tea.

You say, “Hey, would you like a cup of tea?” and they go, “OMG, f*ck yes, I would f*cking LOVE a cup of tea! Thank you!” Then you know they want a cup of tea.

If they are unconscious, don’t make them tea. Unsconscious people can’t answer the question, “Do you want tea?” because they are unconcious.


Dearest Someone, I’m gunna show you crazy.

This song had me laughing! I know it’s not supposed to be funny, but … well, guess I’m a little crazy 😉
Also check out the blog “Dearest Someone”, just found it tonight and I like it a lot.

Dearest Someone,

Music is a big thing for me – it influences me a lot, down to the point where it affects the way I think, and I can listen to music when I’m in any type of mood. When I was first diagnosed with PTSD I started using Spotify to create playlists – notably one called ‘Lightbulb’ in which I added songs that pretty much summed up how I felt, or helped make me view things from a different perspective.

Nowadays I still listen to Spotify on a daily basis – but I’ve started listening to the playlists made by others. Listening to one of the playlists that includes all the latest hits I stumbled across this song:

(It does include a lot of swearing so be cautious.)

Bebe Rexha – I’m Gunna Show You Crazy

The thing is I know there’s a lot of swearing etc. but the lyrics really…

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Home sick from a place we never wanted to call home.

This is pretty powerful, especially the end. It speaks to being more comfortable with the known than the unknown… There’s more I want to say about it, but I can’t formulate the words just now.


I often wake up hoping I’d be in a cot. Hearing Jason screaming the lyrics to barbie girl. I’d roll over and click play on the pre-mission playlist; Big Krits  “Rise and Shine” plays. Maybe Poly would come in and slap my foot and say lets get chow or Ryan would have already been up giving me his leftovers while I tell him his sister is beautiful, A running joke that has been going on for nearly 4 years now.

I wake up in a full size bed on Long Island. No chow hall but easily accessible food everywhere in sight. I can get a breakfast sandwich if I really wanted. Freshy Fresh isn’t too far. I no longer see the faces I’ve grown comfortable and accustomed to seeing. The things that were so agitating have become memories and jokes. We would tip beer bottles and laugh about the indirect fire…

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Staying Present During Trauma Therapy: Grounding Techniques

grounding in trauma work

Dr. Kathleen Young: Treating Trauma in Tucson

Staying Present During Trauma Therapy: Grounding Techniques

Working through trauma can be scary, painful, and potentially overwhelming. Very often people who have experienced trauma have coped at least in part through some degree of dissociation. While this was necessary for your survival then, continued dissociation (especially forms that are not within your control) is not adaptive once the abuse has stopped. Now the task of therapy is to help you stay present long enough to learn other means of establishing safety in the present. How does someone with automatic survival skills of dissociation learn to do this? Grounding is one skill that can help.

Trauma therapy does not only consist of telling your story or focusing on traumatic memories, though of course that is a crucial part of the work. Bringing trauma memories to mind, talking about them in a trusting relationship, and developing the capacities for managing them while staying present in the moment are all…

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CHILD ABUSE~Inform, Educate, Empower

Youth Of A Nation:Bent not Broke


Survivors of childhood sexual abuse experience an array of overwhelming and intense feelings. These may include feelings of fear, guilt, and shame. Abusers have been known to tell children that it is the fault of the child that they are abused, shifting the blame away from the abuser, where it belongs, and placing it on the child. Along with this, abusers may threaten or bribe the child into not speaking up; convincing the child that he or she will never be believed.The reaction of a survivor’s friends and family to the disclosure of the abuse also has the potential to trigger immense feelings of guilt, same and distrust, particularly if those individuals denied that the abuse was taking place, or chose to ignore it.

While each individual’s experiences and reactions are unique, there are some responses to child sexual abuse that are common to many survivors:

  • Sleep disturbances / disorders

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Shared from WordPress


Saw the above pic on this blog yesterday, and it really spoke to me. I think it’s a wonderful description of depression…

The Scarlet Label (Borderline Personality Disorder)

for later reading

Everything Matters

borderlineBy Brent Potter PhD

The diagnosis Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) strikes fear and loathing in the hearts of most mental health providers. It is unquestionably one of the most stigmatizing and overused diagnoses in existence. Often diagnosing someone with this label is a clinical punch in the gut to the client and also a means of communicating warning to other clinicians. It is the 21st century version of the scarlet letter.

In Borderline Personality Disorder: New Perspectives on a Stigmatizing and Overused Diagnosis, Jacqueline Simon Gunn and I outline the history of attitudes about the (perceived) feminine gone awry. We show that current diagnostic conceptions do not bespeak a psychiatric disease of chemically imbalanced brain organs, but are the logical outcome of long-standing attitudes about women through history. We do not deny that there are patterns of experience typical of emotional chaos and we demonstrate that men too suffer…

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My heart weeps

“I don’t understand how a person gets to think they matter more than others. Children are not born thinking this way. Children are TAUGHT to hate, discriminate and value certain things more than others. Children are thought to value some lives more than others. We are doing this to ourselves and by doing it so, we keep failing our children. And failing life.” ~ Summer Solstace Girl via A Canvas of the Mind

our beautiful brain – the altered book

very cool idea. I think we have to try this L…

Where I Stand


What you will need:

– A Hard Cover Book to alter – if you don’t have one -Thrift Stores often have hard cover books for a dollar or less.

– Something to stick things down with – I use all types of things when gluing, Mod Podge, White Glue, Double Stick Adhesive, you can use whatever works for you.

– Mod Podge to seal your Masterpiece

– Acrylic paints, colored pencils, crayons, pastels, markers, and pens to doodle with and to add color

– Anything that you would like to use to collage – virtually almost anything can be used in a collage. My favorites are pictures from old books, vintage jewelry, and patterned textured paper.

How it works:

An altered book is an artist-made book recycled and modified into something new in appearance, and meaning. An altered book offers a long-term art-making process for healing. Altered books can be…

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escaping the asylum mentality – Rufus May


recovery network: Toronto

In an article in Occupied Times Rufus May announces his plans to leave the NHS [National Health Service] in  UK where he attempted, for  eighteen years working as a clinical psychologist to bring change to services from the inside – by “infiltrating with  loving kindness”. In that time, he says he has seen many pockets of change for the good but does not see that things have gotten better overall.

Rufus is now chooing to work “promoting more emancipatory approaches”.

These days the asylum is less noticeable as bricks and mortar establishments on the edge of town than it is recognizable as shared mentality of attitudes and fears, of forms of segregation and control, that range from the subtle and invisible to the often heavy-handed use of medications.

Rufus outlines some of his ideas for what we will need to change beyond simply changing mental health systems if we are…

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When The Truth Comes Out The Demons Will Play- Pt. 1

wow, very powerful, especially the last paragraph…
“I’ve heard that some people have tried to put themselves in my shoes but you really can’t. Most people I know don’t wake up everyday wishing they had stopped breathing over night. Most people don’t look at their body and see scars of past pain or red lines from the present. Most people don’t go through the world looking at the ground, afraid that they’ll be seen. Most people don’t know what its like to not feel, to know something is wrong but not be able to describe it. You don’t feel happy, you don’t feel sad. I don’t even like using the word numb. That word still doesn’t describe the feeling. The feeling of just nothing. You’re not calm, you’re not stressed, you’re angry but you’re not happy, you can’t cry but you can’t smile, you can’t move but, well, you can’t move. When this happens, your body isn’t yours anymore. Your body belongs to depression.”