Crossroad Women and Family Services, Inc.
Post Office Box 2421, Kingston, NY 12402
Healing Beyond Childhood Trauma
Did you know that most people in the US have at least one ACE? ACE's are adverse childhood experiences that not only causes harm to the brain of children it changes they way they respond to the stresses of life, compromises their immune systems and causes other chronic health conditions over their lifetime. According to a CDC Kaiser Permanente ACE Study childhood trauma and ACE places people at risk for depression, chronic diseases, mental illness, financial problems, social problems and becoming a victim of violence and sexual crimes.
Other ACE surveys have expanded the types of ACE's and those findings while not surprising are also noted below. Below are traumatic experiences linked to social, financial, mental, emotional and physical problems.
1. A family member who is diagnosed with a mental illness or depressed.
2. Witnessing a mother being abused.
3.A family member who is addicted to drugs or alcohol.
4. Physical, sexual and verbal abuse.
5. A family member who is in prison.
6. Parental separation or divorce.
7. Physical or emotional neglect.
8. Living in an unsafe neighborhood.
9. Experiencing or witnessing racism.
10. Witnessing violence outside of the home.
11. Involvement with the foster care system.
12. Losing a family member due to deportation.
13. Witnessing a father being abused by a mother.
14.Living in a war zone.
15.Being bullied by a peer or adult.
If you have one or more ACE's you are not alone. Research shows that nearly two-third of adults have at least one. Additionally, the scores are even more revealing. For example people with an ACE score of 4 are twice as likely to smoke and seven times more likely to struggle with alcoholism addiction. Additionally, a score of 4 or more is likely to increase the risk of chronic diseases such as emphysema or chronic bronchitis by 400 percent, while also increasing the risk for attempted suicide by 1200. ACE's is also linked to chronic workplace absenteeism, ER visits, mental illness, criminal justice involvement and increased healthcare costs.
The higher the ACE score the more likely it is that people with these scores have more marriages, violence, drug prescriptions, increased risk for broken bones, greater struggles with depression and autoimmune diseases. Studies show that the life span of individuals with an ACE score 6 or higher are at risk for being shortened by 20 years.
The impact of childhood traumatic experiences doesn't just go away as people age. Rather, what a person has lived through directly or indirectly leaves bits and pieces. Harmful traces of the past that keeps showing up has the ability to be passed down from one generation to the next causing generational cycles of unhealed trauma and strongholds.
While the brain does not know the difference between one kind of traumatic experienced and toxic stress from the other we are not stuck with stressed out brains, painful memories, chronic diseases, mental illness or substance abuse.
It's essential that people receive an effective diagnosis from an effective team of caring medical professionals who can create qualified treatment plan so the journey to healing and recovery can begin.
Wishing you health and wellness,
Patrina M Torres, Founder, Totally Healed International
NCCA Certified Temperament Counselor, Certified Instructor
School of Counseling, S.A.C.C. Certified Academic Institution
Email: [email protected]
|Posted on December 27, 2014 at 10:11 AM|
What are the essential ingredients in an ideal relationship?
In the middle of a workshop recently a pertinent question was asked about what creates the ideal relationship. We are asked to think of a relationship we had with something in the last week in one's mind was the ideal relationship, and to think of what it was about the relationship that made it ideal.
A number of men in the group thought of their cars, tool sheds, families, workmates, old friends, even relationships with objections such as their television remote, recliner chair, or favorite pair of shoes. To each of these men, these things felt comfortable, and simple. The relationships they had with these people or objects was rewarding and easy to maintain.
A number of women considered kitchen appliances, favorite clothes or shoes, old friends, neighbors, and treasured items in their lives, and the bond that they had created between people or with items they used in their lives. Words such as reliable, dependable, and comforting were used.
Take a moment and think of dogs. Dog have very simple needs, requiring only food, shelter, and love. No matter how your day has been or what kind of mood your in, when you get home at night you're still greeted in such an authentic, transparent, and enthusiastic fashion. Your dog is always excited to see you, and it's very humbling when you consider it.
I don't know if any of the men or women have someone who greet them so enthusiastically night after night. But no matter how long you've been away from the house or no matter how your day has been, a dog does. A dogs needs a few, yet they give so much. I call this unconditional love.
So what is unconditional love?
Unconditional love is the type of love that comes without conditions. It is the type of love that you have for your partner when the romantic, hollywood-style love is gone. Once the romantic love is gone you make the transition to "real" love. Real love is the love you have for your partner despite the knowledge that they are not perfect.
You know by now that your spouse has faults. You know your spouse is not perfect. You know your spouse makes mistakes sometimes, but that's okay. You still love them. You love your spouse because of those imperfections rather than in spite of them.
This is unconditional love. The same thing applies to you however in looking at your partner's faults. You acknowledge that you are the same. You have faults. You are not perfect. You know you make mistakes sometimes, but that's okay. That's called self-acceptance, and you expect unconditional love to overcome the faults and imperfections that people have.
So what do you get from this then?
Should we all go out and get dogs to teach us something about unconditional love? Maybe there is a lesson to be learned here. We all clutter our lives with thoughts and emotions, trials and tribulations, and there is temptation to let our issues become bigger than they really are and rule our lives.
If you are serious about saving your marriage the key is finding ways to place emotional clutter to one side and let your unconditional love come through. It is okay to have faults and make mistakes. It's okay to have thoughts and feelings. But above all of this is the love you have for your spouse, the love you have for one another. And love will conquer them all.
It is possible to not like your spouse or not like what they are doing and still love them. It's possible to not like where your life or your marriage is but still love your spouse. The love you have for your spouse and your marriage can remain constant.
It's time to learn how to reconnect with your life purpose and learn to love unconditionally.
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Categories: Marriage and Family Enrichment