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  • What is the definition of “trauma”



    Big “T” traumas:

    We call them the big T traumas and they are exactly what you would imagine them to be. Basically these traumas occur and that’s where survival instinct comes in, where you’re worried about your own physical safety. Big T traumas are natural disasters.  Also, any type of violence that occurs to someone is categorized as a big T trauma.

    A big “T” trauma can also be a vicarious trauma. For instance, if you grew up in a household where there was domestic violence, although the violence was not inflicted on you if you witnessed the violence that is classified as vicarious trauma.  So any type of physical abuse, sexual assault/abuse, combat experiences or violent experiences are all considered big “T” traumas. 

    Small “t” traumas:

    EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) also works on what clinicians refer to as small “t” traumas. This could include physical or emotional neglect, family conflicts, infidelity or divorce, work conflicts, sexual harassment, or bullying.

    With small “t” traumas you might not feel physically violated or threatened, but psychologically you feel very unstable and unsafe.  And quite frankly, trauma, it doesn’t matter whether it’s a big T trauma or a little T trauma, it is trauma.  

    Struggling with Stuck Negative Beliefs:  

    Sometimes we find ourselves struggling with negative beliefs about ourselves.  We know we should be able to get past them but they often feel stuck. Beliefs like, “I still don’t feel like I’m good enough or I don’t belong or I’m always on the outside.” Logic doesn’t seem to get rid of those beliefs either.  

    EMDR has a component of the protocol that works to desensitize these negative beliefs feel stuck.  These old beliefs might have originated from caregivers, dysfunctional family dynamics or a difficult life experience.  With EMDR we work to desensitize these negative beliefs and install a new positive belief.

    EMDR trauma therapy is a phenomenal way to help somebody move past their traumatic experiences and get onto a road of healing and recovery.

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