We don’t have trust issues! We trust trauma. (Video)

I spoke about ACEs and traumatic stress as a trauma survivor a few months back at the Nantucket Historical Association. The talk was recorded and so I’m sharing it here. It’s close to an hour long. I made a little index in case only one topic is of interest and you want to go directly to that. I also linked to some resources for healing modalities or approaches mentioned in this talk in case you want to do more research on your own.

  • Where are the Other Trauma Survivors? ( 3:54)
  • Sometimes We’re Just Yearning for Community (6:07)
  • Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) Study (7:15)
  • The Bear in the Living Room (Donna Jackson Nakazawa) (17:32)
  • Trauma is not an event – it’s an environment (22:57)
  • Parenting is My Super Power: How the ACE Study Empowers Parents (26:06)
  • Now What? Healing as an Adult (28:33)
    • Dr. Filetti’s Suggestions (28:55)
    • Expressive Writing & Writing from the Heart (30:17)
    • Attachment & What We Can Learn from Adoptive Parents (31:37)
    • Mama the Trauma (33:57)
    • Rick Hanson & Self-Compassion (35:15)
    • Bellaruth Naparstek & Guided Imagery (37:30)
    • DINE + Joy or How to Improve Lifespan if You Have a High ACE Score (38.07)
    • Yoga/Yoga Nidra (39.43)
    • Community (40:21)
  • I Think I Have a People Problem (41:22)
  • I Didn’t Know I Was Supposed to Feel Safe or That Other People Did (44:05)


  1. One of my aunts went to college and got an Associate degree so I was not the first to go to college, as I stated. I was the first to get my BA and to go away to school. I do not believe this makes me any smarter than anyone else. In fact, because of my experience I know how much money and access to education have to do with who gets a degree and how little it has to do with intelligence. Most people in my family are smarter than I am. By a lot! Most of them have a lot more common sense than I do as well.
  2. One member of my family had gone to marriage counseling. As far as I know, I am the first to go to talk therapy but am not the first to go to any kind of therapy. I’m quite sure I’m not the last person to go to therapy though, because I am a slow learner, I may have the longest “time” in therapy.
  3. I did write to Dr. Vincent Felitti and he was kind enough to write back and offer suggestions about EMDR and hypnotherapy. I did not ask him what he would tell his daughter (and don’t know if he has children). I meant what advice would you give me if I were your daughter. That’s what I always ask my mechanic as well. But that was not clearly stated.


You Matter Mantras

  • Trauma sucks. You don't.
  • Write to express not to impress.
  • It's not trauma informed if it's not informed by trauma survivors.
  • Breathing isn't optional.

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