Thursday, July 10, 2014

Brain Development and Childhood Trauma

I've told the story of my childhood experience at the age of seven, being bullied and hospitalized as a result.  I've been told that after this period of my life, that I was changed.  I was more withdrawn, more reserved, less connected with people.  Of course, it makes perfect sense that a person who has been traumatized by bullying, sexual abuse, violence, etc would be less trusting of their fellow human beings.  Hard to imagine it being otherwise.  However, and this is fascinating, there is research that shows that brain development can be affected by emotional and physical trauma.  And definitely not affected in a positive way.  The brain of a child is a fragile thing, and traumatic events can prevent it from developing in a normal, natural way.  What can be some affects without getting into huge detail?  The development of post-traumatic stress disorder is one.  I have no doubt that happened to me.  Others can be a deterioration of cognitive function, desensitization, lack of empathy and compassion, and so on.  These can be the result of developmental changes, and not simply due to superficial effects.  And, they can be lifelong.  Imagine the effects on children who are exposed to warfare, death, and destruction daily.  It breaks the heart.

The good news is that help is out there.  Thank God for that!  To anyone affected, investigate options.  No situation is hopeless.  Things may seem hopeless, but they aren't.  Where we are today doesn't have to be where we are permanently.  Things can be changed, but sometimes change is slow.  It happens over time, but we have to start the process.  I wish all human beings the best, and no harm to anyone.  We are all beings of Spirit.  The most important thing we can do is believe that and act accordingly.  That can result in great personal transformation. 

Peace, love and blessings . . .


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