I have just started to work with youth so my experience, in this way, is quite limited. So far, I have only had one youth exhibit trauma in a similiar way as mentioned in this module, and specifically with avoidance symptoms of PTSD. I haven’t had any individuals present with trauma symptoms that were not mentioned in this module, but as I mentioned earlier, this is a new work experience for me so that may change.
Thanks for a wonderful module! I thoroughly enjoyed it!
In working with youth who have experienced violence, a good portion of my cases include youth that have suffered from PTSD. We have a summer day camp program that we do for youth in our program every summer. In the past 3 years, there have been a lot of physical encounters, anger, balled fists, name calling, etc. It usually occurs when the youth is triggered by something another youth or even a staff had said or done. Often because we are working with youth we don’t know (usually from someone else’s caseload), we may not always know or be prepared for responses we get. I would say the most common traumas I have encountered would be C-PTSD, Developmental trauma disorder, and Complex trauma. This module was extremely helpful!
In working with youth with complex trauma I have encountered attachment issues, self – regulation issues, competence issues and cognitive issues. These trauma related issues manifest into a range of behaviours and although there is progress with some youth, there is youth that also regress.
I have a hx with working with parents with chronic SUD, many have significant trauma histories. I have worked with youth for short periods of time and at different points in my career but was very limited in what capacity I was work with. Currently I am working with pregnant teens in a non-clinical setting as well as volunteering with Bikers Against Child Abuse, also non-clinical, but I am sure that in both places, I will get many opportunities to utilize what I am learning. I did have a light bulb moment with this current module and a 21 yo fella that I met with in the crisis center this weekend. He reported to have spent from age 11 yo to 18 yo in the foster care system and ended by aging out. I spent an hour with him that so draining with negativity and anger and hopelessness. Most definitely the “worldview shift” was exhibited as all he could focus on was how “the system sucked” and “no one cares so why bother”. Of course, he exhibited the hyper-arousal, and I had already been warned to keep his focus to his current needs. Any discussion or attempts to change his thinking around how “the system sucks” increased his anger significantly. He seemed unable, or unwilling, to tell me what he needed or how he was in crisis. I have been reading “The Body Keeps the Score” over the last couple of weeks and was to relate to some of the symptomology that was going on. It appeared to me that he was struggling with his experiences in foster care which he defined as “you will never know the hell that I went through”. At no point was he able to give me any feedback on how I could support him. He would not answer my questions on SI/HI. Just stated “what do you think” in a hostile manner. I felt almost as helpless because I couldn’t do anything to help him. I hope to learn more tools should I encounter this again. Because he comes to the crisis center frequently, I will be on the look out for him. He is definitely someone that has left a profound impression on me.
The rural area of WV where I live lost 23 lives last summer in a severe flood. Peoples’ lives have been altered by that significant tragedy in lasting ways. We are also amidst the opioid epidemic and a background of poverty and ill health. The rural elementary school where I help by offering mindfulness to some grades as an outside provider, has a wonderful principal, counselor, and staff. The children display various degrees of C- Trauma and I hope to be able to recognize and at least bring what I notice to the counselor’s attention. The principal has asked me to help address anger management issues. My contact hours will be limited to 2 grades 1x per week.
The mindfulness work last year did have impact. The students asked for the practice when I was not there. It’s catching on! This Trauma training is so important! Thank you.
I am not currently working with any adolescents though when I was previously working with them much of this information could be used to identify with there experiences. I also worked with some Kids presenting with ASD. I see that even with my work with older men and women that connecting with there experiences of childhood is required so I sense this information will help with my work with adults also
I see a lot of intergenersational trauma especially related to drug abuse. The most eye opening part of this first unit is thinking about this expanded definition of PTSD to include relational symptoms. I see many teens struggle with healthy relationships whether with friends, family or significant others.
As a Social Worker in private practice I am dealing on a daily base with children and adults that have been effected by most of the ACE traumas sexual abuse, physical abuse, divorce and separation, mental health issues, physical neglect, alcohol and drug abuse. Most of my client present either with intergenerational trauma or complex trauma. As I live in South Africa we also deal a lot with historical trauma as system violence – racism and poverty. Some of the children that I assessed presented with developmental trauma. All my client have PTSD symptoms that falls over all 4 categories from intrusion, avoidance, negative mood and cognition disturbance and arousal. All the children and parents that I see have attachment difficulties that was influenced by trauma or historical attachment problems that the parents experience.
At my middle school, I work with students who have experienced community violence, abuse, family violence, parents suffering from mental illness, parent/family member’s incarcerated, etc. Most often, I see their symptoms present with PTSD or complex trauma. The avoidance symptoms are present most often as well as somatic complaints or behavioral problems.
I have worked with and continue to work with many youth who display the symptoms of Complex PTSD, intergenerational and historical trauma. Many are seen as “problem youth” and are quickly labeled and are often times continually traumatized by uninformed teachers. I think it is important to recognize that schools are often a place where young people experience trauma either from teachers or other students or both. I am so grateful that you have made this course so accessible-it should be required for anyone working with young people.
I work with young people, many of whom present with 4 or more ACE’s. Many have been exposed to parental drug and or alcohol use leading to emotional, physical abuse & neglect. These experience’s often mean that their behaviour in school is presented as anger, withdrawal, truanting, bullying and general lack of ability to achieve.
Self-harming is prevalent as a means of coping, as is eating disorders as the young person struggles to find some sort of control in the chaos around them.
Anger is most commonly the referral issue by teaching staff, which is of course just the presenting issue and is the most acceptable emotion to display relatively safely for young people. The issue is what lies below the anger.
Insecure attachment is also common due to ACE, all of the above can and quite often leads to the young person at risk of turning to unhealthy means of coping and repeating the trauma such as using drugs and alcohol themselves.
Many of the youth I work with have experienced sexual assault, which is their primary trauma. However, many of them have secondary trauma’s that affect their wellness. For example, some experience poverty, have witnessed or been a survivor of physical violence/domestic violence, divorce in the family, and other systemic violence. Many of them struggle with anger, anxiety, and depression as it relates to their trauma.
I have encountered youth who has displayed symptoms of Complex PTSD, and I have also witnessed what I just learned was Hypo-Arousal Symptoms. I am extremely grateful for this additional information .
As a foster parent, I have seen eight our of the ten listed ACES in my ten years of experience. As far as I know, none of my placements had a household member in prison or had been sexually abused. That’s not to say that either of these experiences weren’t possibilities, but it was not something that was shared or known when that child was in my care. The majority of the foster children that I have cared for were 12yr or younger and had already experienced a combination of the other eight ACES in their young lives.
I do not currently work with youth but have done so in the past in an after-school program for elementary school students as a volunteer. Due to the different activities the students had to participate in, I didn’t see any incident by any member that would point to that student having experienced a trauma. However, I do know that due to the socio-economic background of many of the students in the program and what the staff has shared, some students are from divorced/separated households and have experienced a few of the abuses (domestic, alcoholic, and/or sexual).
I believe that with the youth that I work with would have more then 4 ACES physical and sexual abuse neglect domestic violence and many more falling into the catorgory of PSTD Hyper vigilance always on guard vs hypo arousal being flat mostly all the time. Negative emotional states diminished interests in activities feeling no cares. Extreme risk taking behaviours with no thought of consequences
Although I work with adults rather than youth (at City College of San Francisco), I find this information is very relevant. In addition to having experienced various ACES and other traumatic conditions described during this module, many students come to my English class having had negative – often traumatic – prior experiences in school. Even for adults returning to school a bit later in life, being back in a classroom can trigger those old feelings and memories. It’s possible that students might be experiencing intrusion symptoms (feeling shamed, for example, when reading aloud). When it comes to reading and writing tasks, I see avoidance symptoms, and also arousal symptoms (both hyper- and hypo-arousal) that lead students to give up on tasks easily. Many people have developed negative perceptions of themselves as students – believing, for instance, that they are “bad readers.” However, these beliefs tend to be distortions; most students are quite capable of comprehending and engaging with the readings once introduced to some helpful reading strategies. As I was listening to this module, I was thinking about the ways that historical trauma is so often played out in education. I try to help students develop growth mindsets and a sense of control over their own learning processes.
I have worked with youth at a private school who have experience trauma and complex trauma. This information has been very useful to look back and see how much of their symptoms were a result from trauma. I know much more about how to help any future students I work with effectively.
I work with youth at a transitional center and many of them present with PTSD and Complex Trauma. I do provide individual counseling so I hear their stories. I can relate to the information presented in this lesson. One type of trauma that I see is from youth have been in the foster care system and abused by the system that was supposed to protect them. Their world view is certainly altered.
The youth I work with have experienced many of the ACEs, a few have experienced PTSD responses, and I have observed both arousal and hypo-arousal symptoms. I appreciate the comment made that the school environment is not always a safe place and that students may experience traumatic events from both their teachers and their peers.
I have learned a lot from this module. Thank you.
I have worked with a very wide and differing population of clients from very distressed youth who require secure care to adult prisoners and ex-prisoners and their families. My initial work with incarcerated was the stimulus for my developing skills in the area of addiction and further along realising that affect of psychological and emotional distress requiring psychotherapy. In last decade I have been connecting more with trauma informed work including use of Rothschild’s somatic trauma therapy work and more recently developing attachment experience particularly Crittendon’s model and use of EMDR. I am really enjoying Sam’s flow of describing useful developments in trauma specialising in the youth area.
Larry O Reilly
Some of the youth that I’ve worked with have symptoms that are probably the manifestation of trauma/complex trauma (some known and some unknown). I am looking forward to the next modules in hopes of gaining some more techniques to help my students break the cycle and develop heathier coping strategies and I enjoyed the material from this first module. I have experienced youth who also regress, as stated in another comment, and youth who have a solid knowledge base of the trauma and how it manifests, yet are “stuck” there and are either not ready or unwilling to take the next steps toward change.
During the last weeks I have been working in at risk-school context. It is not difficult to see that a lot of children who are in this school have could live difficult situations in the school itself, with their families and in their neighborhood. It is probably a lot of them have experienced verbal abuse, phisical abuse, complicated relationships with their parents and about their families (emotional neglect, relational trauma or divorce). Moreover the school is ubicated a poverty área in the city, so normally the suffer the systemic trauma (poverty, racism…). It is posible to realized also how their cognitive functions are lower relative to children who are the same age in non at-risk schools. Many children in each class show an attitude of distrust and defiance, which can affect healthy socio-emotional development.
To be honest I am not able to find more types of trauma than those that have been said in module 1!
When I was teaching in Alum Rock, many of my students had experiences community violence, domestic violence, intergenerational trauma, sexual abuse/assault, and other forms of trauma. Currently I am working with a couple of young adults who have experienced neglect, verbal abuse, and physical abuse.
In the context of my work with youth who are in the care of Child and Family Services I have encountered all of the ACES. Most of the youth in our group homes have been exposed to some form of abuse and/or neglect in order for them to have been removed from the care of their parents. In addition to the trauma that the child/youth has already been exposed to within their family context they also experience trauma when they are removed from their homes. So far, I don’t think this type of trauma has been discussed in this course and I believe it adds another level of complexity to the trauma that our youth are dealing with. I also have found that this type of trauma often goes unrecognized or unacknowledged for youth. Furthermore, as another person mentioned unfortunately too often children and youth who are removed from abusive home situations can be exposed to further victimization within the foster care system.
In my work setting, I attend many cases of trauma related to physical violence, verbal violence, divorce, racism, mental illness in caregivers, poverty and violence in the environment. In most cases trauma affects their behavior and attention processes, their family relationships, their emotional regulation and their overall performance. What I’ve learned this week has helped me have a better understanding of how trauma impacts daily life.
What types of trauma do you encounter in your work with youth? Do you work with individuals who present with trauma in ways not mentioned thus far in module/week 1? (answer in the comments section below)
As I took the ACEs quiz, I realized that a significant percentage of the young adults I engage with while coaching educators have experienced 4 or more ACEs and have experienced or are continuing to experience complex trauma. Sam’s example of young people being misdiagnosed as having ADHD, etc when what is actually going on is complex trauma definitely resonated with me; I see this happen all the time. Also, the effect of intergenerational and historic trauma on young people’s lives cannot be underestimated — grateful for the explanation of the differences between the two because I have worked with youth who have either/both and did not have the language to name what they were going through.
I have worked with youth that have been exposed to all of the ACE’s discussed in this module. I have also supported youth who have been affected by motor vehicle accidents, community violence, exposure to triggering images or media, systemic violence and early childhood attachment issues. Historical trauma is also a reality for many of the youth with Indigenous backgrounds. Through colonization their ancestors were victims of multi-layered forms of trauma. In Canada we are embarking on a Truth and Reconciliation process that
An aspect of this module that really resonated with me is how affects of trauma can be diagnosed as ADHD or personality disorders but are really symptoms of trauma. I feel that this is such an important thing to name with young people. I look forward to learning more about how to work with those affected by trauma to support them to a place of wellness and recovery from life circumstances that are not any fault of their own.
In my work setting, we have young people who have experienced/are experiencing traumatic events on multiple levels, most of which were discussed in this unit. Drugs, mental illness, family violence, gang affiliation, community violence, individual violence, suicide and the loss of many young lives seems to really resonate and affect not only the youth, but adults who work with them. Vicarious trauma affects many as well. This module was a solid review of the definition of Trauma and the multifaceted and complex arena that trauma encompasses. I greatly appreciate the references and sharing of research and published works.
For the last 4 yrs I have worked with children and youth who have layers of trauma otherwise known as complex trauma. There are many who have been diagnosed with ADHD when in reality it is severe hyper vigilance. While gathering information for an assessment I learn that the parents have had multiple trauma and have not processed their own experiences. Many of the experiences have to do with drugs, mental illness, domestic violence, community violence, sexual assaults, sexual abuse. Many of my clients are too young to remember and those that do at times do not want to talk about it and others do want to talk about it. As a therapist I meet the client where they are at and utilize a variety of interventions to help with their anxiety, hyper vigilance, and fear. I have always looked at trauma as the event that occurred rather than the response to the negative event. Although, I have a pretty good background to what trauma is and PTSD I am looking forward to looking at trauma in a different light. I look forward to unit 2.
I have really enjoyed all of the information so far. I have an adopted 18 year old that has lived many traumatic events (from the foster system) that has brought her to the DX of PTSD. We live this stuff every day. It is so helpful for me to get a better understanding as to why she is doing certain things. The Hypo-Arousal symptoms is something I didn’t think of before. Sometimes if she opens up about a trauma she actually will fall asleep while talking about it… We thought it was the strangest thing but now I GET it. This information will be so helpful for us as we work with teens that have had or living traumatic events. Thanks for the engaging teaching method.
I have worked with children and youth experiencing a wide range of traumas in crisis intervention, emergency shelters and other therapeutic settings where child ACE’s related to all sorts of abuse and neglect were commonplace. Working mostly in school and afterschool settings now, I’d say the most common trauma among youth I connect with is the experience of parental, sibling or close friend substance misuse…including death from overdose or accidents, with exposure to mental illness and suicide also quite significant. I found this module very informative with your expansion of the limited DSM V definition and really nice overview of seminal work regarding PTSD and Complex Trauma in general and C-PTSD, DTS and PTSS in particular. So relevant and on target with needs experienced among so many youth today. I look forward to week 2. Thanks for all.
This module was very helpful. I especially appreciate the integration of historical trauma as a consideration when understanding an individual’s trauma history. In my work I encounter trauma in the many forms you mentioned. An additional trauma (or an extension of some of the trauma you mentioned) is the trauma of incarceration, and all that this experience can bring (lack of ability to control one’s own movements, surroundings, more direct assaults perpetrated by others who are incarcerated and/or staff). Some of the more frequent manifestations of trauma in my work include mood lability (quick to irritation/anger), lack of trust, and hopelessness. Thank you for the expanded definitions of both trauma and PTSD.
A significant majority of the young people I work with certainly have more than one experience of trauma. Some are revealed fairly quickly: physical abuse or assault, neglect and abandonment, parental drug abuse, death of a parent or other caregiver, poverty, sexual abuse, divorce, etc. From the first unit’s information, I am now able to see a little more clearly about the impact of intergenerational trauma and also repeated exposure to trauma details such as may be viewed on social media or other places online. Many of the youth I know were born just after 9/11 and I am observing some of the impact of that time on their folks and on their overall functioning – sort of like a baseline anxiety without any other trauma experience added. I also deal with a lot of impact of social media influence and perseveration of students to return again and again to view violent or disturbing content. I haven’t heard it described in this way before taking this course and it is very eye-opening. Thank you.
I have only worked with a handful of adolescents all of which have experienced complex trauma, having 4+ ACE’s. They are approx. 18 y/o and have legal involvement. The dx. of Developmental Trauma Disorder appears to align with their behavior and cognitive presentation. Two of these youth have been dx. with ADHD and SUD’s. They both are attending mindfulness groups educating them on emotional regulation/CBT etc. During previous sessions I have had to de-escalate these patients when they were displaying hyper arousal symptoms elevated voice, eyes twitching and clinched fists-disproportionate reactions. I will be bring up their dx. at case conference and discuss looking through a trauma lens. Thank you! Interesting how the DSM-5 is not there yet. Hopefully soon.
I am very new to youth work, however in my short time I have worked with youth who would have displayed behaviours that would link with trauma experiences. This has been a very interesting module and very thought provoking. Thank you.
The youth that I work with present with traumas, such as sexual, physical, emotional, and abuse and neglect. They have grown up in in households where there has been poverty, domestic violence, and single parent households (due to divorce/separation, death, abandonment). They grown up in neighborhoods where gang violence is prevalent, they don’t feel accepted or wanted at their local schools, and the majority of adolescents around them don’t have a goals or dreams. I also work with students that have recently immigrated from countries where they have suffered from parent abandonment, gang violence, and then coming to the US and going through the reunification process with parents who they haven’t seen is 5 + years.
I have worked with adolescents since 2008 in the school setting and have seen many of the behaviors/acting out that point to trauma in the child’s life. Most recently, I saw kids acting out in class that appeared to be bad behavior, but I now understand that for some, the behaviors may have had a trauma background. Some of the ways the kids act out are swearing, kicking chairs, and cutting class.
What I know is that kids don’t want to act out in these violent ways. Kids really want to succeed and to ‘fit in’. With this knowledge and belief, I have come to look for reasons why kids are having problems in the classroom or in their social life. Now I have some ideas about ACE’s can be a place that it all begins.
The youth I work with have experienced many of the ACEs.
I think that the most important comment made is that the school environment is not always a safe place for students. Many of their experiences, according to our climate survey, come from negative interactions through a variety of interactions, whether in the hallway, outside of school, and on social media.
This unit will help me to work with my students and give me greater insight.
The youth that I work with have also experienced many of the ACE’s. Most of my students are males and they have experienced physical/sexual abuse along with abandonment and attachment issues. In the day treatment room (housed in a middle school grades 5-8) I often deal a lot with the secondary reactions that normally include hyper-arousal behavior. The boys tend to be very aggressive. and get in a lot of trouble behaviorally. They often do not know what the driver is and really want to be able to find a coping mechanism that is helpful.
The girls on the other hand are very internal. There is more self-harm and suicidal ideation and very little problematic behavior in the classroom.
I do have a girl this year that has Type II diabetes and really has a lot of the Trauma symptoms. I have just started working with her so I am not sure what other factors are involved.
I feel like this unit really helped me remember the complexity of trauma and how in-depth in can be regardless of the DSM classification. It was especially important for me to remember that early childhood relationships of influence the influence to trauma. Every child is so different and unique.
In my current position , every student I am working with has been affected by PTSD and/or Conplex Trauma. I find the information on inherited family trauma very interesting and quite alarming. This course is amazing and is giving me powerful information that allows me to better serve my students!!
During my time as a classroom educator, I have seen a gradual increase of concerning behaviors ie; attentional and behavioral dysregulation of behavior and functional impairment for example. Increases in separation and divorce and feelings of abandonment for some children, as a result, is one example. I understand that all behavior is communication, but I am learning just how complex trauma is. I did not consider intergenerational trauma as precursors to traumatic symptoms. I spent many years working with youth on the Autism Spectrum. For some their vulnerability has been preyed upon both emotionally and physically. For some girls, their grief is expressed via self-harming and suicide attempts, while for some boys aggressive and impulsive behaviors occurs. In addition, The stress incurred for some families raising an autistic child has seen families separated and parents and children alike vulnerable to mental illness and trauma related symptoms.
We support children in our regular school learning environments as well as our alternative school learning setting who exhibit symptoms of complex trauma Over the past several years we have seen a significant increase in the number of young children 4 to 9 years old coming to school every day not having the ability to focus, self regulate and begin to trust. We accept them where they are and be with them and travel their journey with them helping with co regulation. We look forward to each day hoping each new day they begin to trust and are willing to have a relationship Our students may experience chaos and substance abuse in their homes, or ever present uncertainty. Some of our students have experienced physical or sexual abuse. At different time these children will have difficulty concentrating and when triggered will experience a fear response of fight, flight or freeze. The teachers in my schools know behaviors are a communication. We help them to develop a sense of belonging, mastery, independence, generosity and safety.
I agree with others that this has been an interesting module. I have worked with children and young people in mental health and child protection settings and encountered a range of behaviours that indicate these children and young people have experienced significant trauma which is confirmed in their stories. Historical trauma in particular impacts on Aboriginal children and their parents, with the Stolen Generation of children being removed from their families and communities over many decades having a severe and lasting impact on Aboriginal families today.
I have a question about bullying as a source of trauma, and how this source is classified? It doesn’t quite seem to fit with relational trauma. Many young people experience systematic and chronic bullying, face-to-face or cyber, that has a lasting impact.
Thanks so much for the work (and everyone here) do. Great question above bullying. Getting bullied absolutely can fall within realm of traumatic experiences. Different youth respond differently and that ties in our definition of trauma, that it is the response to threat (of some form) and not the act itself (the bullying). It’s not exactly how described in these modules but it can be a form of relational trauma. Bullying often involves emotional and physical abuse, humiliation, and other forms of psychological assault. It of course depends on the youth but those experiences can absolutely impact someone so negatively that their worldview changes, they become depressed, and other symptoms of complex trauma can arise. The example that’s coming to mind is the Columbine shootings here in the states where youth were heavily ridiculed and humiliated in front of other classmates and ended up shooting other students at the school and then themselves. They were heavily impacted and one could argue traumatized. That is a really great question though and I’m glad you’re thinking about this work from all angles!
What types of trauma do you encounter with yur work with youth?
I have also experienced all types of trauma mentioned while working with youth in a Canadian Medical Public setting. I would say most often (then the other types of trauma) youth are seen by our clinic for severe health concerns that can and have stemmed from PTSD. Our Social Work Team’s referrals come from people who present with medical complexities and also need mental health support, which can very often be a one equals the other type scenario; as many referenced researches have found. One youth who has experienced severe physical abuse/trauma, has difficulty with obesity and high blood pressure, which I associate to having the PTSD symptom of arousal (hyper arousal). He also has a very negative mood and life views. Not trusting anyone, not wanting to participate in activities or spots that he used to enjoy very much. I would say this is a form of avoidance also.
To answer the second question, I am working with one youth that is tricky to pin point how he is presenting. At first I thought he was avoiding thoughts/feelings/emotions of childhood trauma, but now he will discuss it with me, quite openly, but not in a detailed way, and he never breaks his “too cool to get upset” persona. Is this still avoidance if he’s sharing but not “feeling”? I am also careful because he has had extensive therapy and possibly has done the work to maybe have arrived at a place where the emotional reaction is not as strong anymore. I find myself wondering if I am approaching this the best way..
I have had several children come to treatment for sexual trauma and once evaluated present with complex trauma. I also, treat adult victims of child sexual trauma and they still evidence the complex trauma. I do a lot of ODD and emotional behavioral DX. This brings a new light to a DX that I feel is handed out far to much.
With my client living in residential care, as a Therapeutic support worker the manifestations of events and the multi-layered experiences of trauma has impacted greatly with a range of PTSD, C-PTSD, Personality disorder, suicidal ideations are the way to ease the pain and suffering daily , attachment disorder to carers, anxiety, depression, drug use and developmental disorder of cognitive presentation displaying childlike tantrums at the age of 18 years. The treating elements is to keep attention on the client whilst establishing coping skills to redirect the pattern of behaviour from escalating where the client will get admitted to hospital for further psychiatric assessments. Being 18 years of age the client often choses to leave, but claims no one is there helping her, the conflict cycle is ongoing 24/7 in her mind.
I work with kids in a residential and school setting that have been taken out of their homes because of abuse and neglect. Most of them have experienced sexual, verbal, physical abuse, and some have experienced extreme neglect – no food for long periods, locked in closet. Many the kids are hypervigilant and exhibit angry outbursts (throw desks/chairs/explode verbally, kick, punch). The majority have problems sleeping and concentrating. It’s not uncommon for the High School students to fall asleep in class. They are distracted and have poor attention and memory. I’ve noticed a few students who take on the role of caretaker for other students acting like everything is perfect – which is perhaps their way to avoid.
My experiences with Youth (New to it) are avoidance, poor memory, not wanting to talk and thats ok. There is some anger and aggression but I work with young girls from domestic violence and the patterns tend to be staying small, withdrawal avoiding challenging situations etc etc
I work with you who usually do a lot of name calling and bullying or are typically really quite and reserved.
I have worked with children and youth that exhibit various signs of trauma. One example from a summer camp where about half the kids were IDP’s (internal refugees from the war in Eastern Ukraine): Loud noises would make some of them “hit the deck”. That same summer we had a para-military exercise going on in the vicinity of our camp that featured armed soldiers, helicopters and armored personnel carriers and we had kids that went into the fetal position for a day or two. Many were non-responsive and withdrawn, some were shaking or crying. More recently, working with some of those same teenagers now 3 years removed from those events I see a lot of “worldview shift” in them and quite a bit of avoidance.
My kids have not shared their trauma
..but mostly act out..or shut down
My caseload is about 1/4 youth…several have experienced the kinds of trauma discussed here. This segment was reassuring that I am on the right track as I explore trauma history in addition to the “behavioral” diagnosis they often come to my office with from previous treatment centers.
The youth that I encounter often has faced sexual assault as well as youth that have been jumped or beaten up on. Im a youth myself so i often will talk about my experience with trauma and relate with youth. Most of the youth ive talked to want to express and talk to someone about their traumas as long as they feel safe and supported. I cant wait to use this knowledge to serve youth more,
I work as a pediatric occupational therapist. Many of the children I work with have trauma from sensory processing difficulties. For example, loud noises, unexpected touch, severe reactions to taste, touch or texture have caused a fight or flight reaction with bad memories of the event. They are unable to work through the emotions and memories so they avoid the situations altogether.
I’ve worked in a number of settings with youth, Currently I’m a Mindful educator in a learning center/daycare and I often see that misdiagnosis of ADHD and behavior problems in children who have experienced high ACEs in their young lives (parents in prison, etc),
I myself, have an ACE score of 6. I found myself tearful through some of the lessons thus far, and it has been difficult to push through some of the triggers. Thanks fully I have education and training in Mindful Based Cognitive therapy as well as a determination to utilize this information and experience for myself and the youth I work with – including my own children.
I’m looking forward to finishing this course and continuing on with a positive outlook regardless of these negative influences and experiences.
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