As a clinical social worker, my trauma-informed lens is influenced by trainings, classes, internships, work settings, and life experience. From community mental health, public education,and private practice settings, I have had profound experiences that shape my desire to be deeply aware of the impacts of trauma and to work in ways that support safety and healing. Below are some of the ideas that influence my trauma-informed practices. - Raquel
Here are some thoughts on trauma:
BEFRIENDING THE BODY
"Trauma victims cannot recover until they become familiar with and befriend the sensations in their bodies. Being frightened means that you live in a body that is always on guard. Angry people live in angry bodies. The bodies of child-abuse victims are tense and defensive until they find a way to relax and feel safe. In order to change, people need to become aware of their sensations and the way that their bodies interact with the world around them. Physical self-awareness is the first step in releasing the tyranny of the past." Dr. van de Kolk
"A traumatic experience impacts the entire person – the way we think, the way we learn, the way we remember things, the way we feel about ourselves, the way we feel about other people, and the way we make sense of the world..." Sandra Bloom, M.D.
"A trauma-informed system takes care of the caregivers" Dr. Joyce Dorado
“The conflict between the will to deny horrible events and the will to proclaim them aloud is the central dialectic of psychological trauma.” Dr. Judith Lewis Herman, Trauma and Recovery
What does it mean to be trauma-informed?
According to SAMHSA’s concept of a trauma-informed approach, “A program, organization, or system that is trauma-informed:
Realizes the widespread impact of trauma and understands potential paths for recovery;
Recognizes the signs and symptoms of trauma in clients, families, staff, and others involved with the system;
Responds by fully integrating knowledge about trauma into policies, procedures, and practices; and
Seeks to actively resist re-traumatization."
I believe healing is possible...