If we discover that childhood trauma is negatively influencing our adult lives, what do we do about it? Will remembering what happened to us and understanding how that experience continues to affect us actually help? As someone who has been a therapist for more than … Continue readingYour history is not your destiny.
Almost twenty years ago, the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) study demonstrated conclusively that childhood trauma was widespread and implicated in a broad range of adult problems, from addiction to absenteeism to cancer. Neglected since Freud dismissed memories of childhood sexual abuse as fantasies, research into … Continue readingAnnouncing the publication of Iron Legacy: Childhood Trauma and Adult Transformation!
UPDATE My dear friends, Thank you so much for your thoughtful and encouraging responses! I’m genuinely moved by the insight with which you chose your favorite blurb–and by the generosity of your feedback. I learned much more than I was expecting from your comments, not … Continue readingMy new book needs a blurb!
Unless you’ve been living in a cave for the last few years, you know that the United States is a deeply divided country. Our views on guns, immigration, climate, gender, and many other issues have become polarized, our public discourse marked by passionate intensity but … Continue readingSpare the Rod: Still Debating a Settled Question
Though some observers argue that we live in a “secular age,” religion remains central in many Americans’ lives. More than half of us describe ourselves as “religious” and worship regularly in churches, temples, and mosques, mostly churches. The number was even larger in previous generations, … Continue readingReligious Trauma in Childhood
Today’s New York Times features ten personal stories of local Catholics rocked by recent revelations of widespread clerical abuse and systematic concealment of that abuse by their church. Two of the stories deal directly with trauma and raise one of the most difficult issues confronting … Continue readingFaith in the Aftermath of Clerical Abuse
It might seem obvious, given the prevalence of childhood trauma among addicts, that the recovery industry should be exceptionally trauma-sensitive. If half to two-thirds of substance abusers have histories of childhood trauma, then surely the institutions entrusted with their care should lead the way in … Continue readingChildhood Trauma and Addiction Treatment
Given how childhood trauma damages the developing brain, no one should be surprised that survivors struggle with addiction. Study after study has found dramatically elevated rates of addiction among adults with a history of childhood trauma–and a high correlation between the amount of trauma and … Continue readingChildhood Trauma and Addiction
Last week, the Associated Press reported the story of Kristy Johnson, who is suing her father for sexually abusing her as a child. Melvin Kay Johnson, a well-respected Mormon educator, began assaulting his daughter when she was six years old and continued until she left … Continue readingKristy Johnson: A Survivor in the News
TL;DR Drug addiction is notoriously hard to film in a way that conveys both its terrors and its allure. In the first episode, PATRICK MELROSE fails badly, substituting OTT histrionics for the desperate, surreal rhythms of addiction. I almost stopped watching after a couple lines … Continue readingWatching Patrick Melrose