A New Understanding

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 the mind, brain, and body.

 

We have discovered that helping victims of trauma find the words to describe what has happened is profoundly meaningful, but usually is not enough.

 

The act of telling the story doesn’t necessarily alter the automatic physical and hormonal responses of bodies that remain hypervigilant, prepared to be assaulted or violated at anytime. For real change to take place, the body needs to learn that the danger has passed and to live in the reality of the present.

 

"Our search to understand trauma has led us to think differently not only about the structure of the mind but also about the processes by which it heals." - Bessel van der Kolk

“Our prefrontal cortex is not the problem, we need to calm our limbic system.” - Bessel van der Kolk

 

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