Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Reclaiming Healthy Touch After Trauma

While this was a term paper I wrote for school many years ago, I think it is still relevant today.  Yes, I have learned a great deal since that time, but the information is still solid.  The term paper was on reclaiming healthy touch after trauma.

In the paper, I discuss various considerations and aspects of working with someone that has been traumatized through abuse, rape, or other means.  There is discussion about how different forms of bodywork can be helpful and more details about each one.

Why reclaiming healthy touch is important is the beginning of the paper and it also touches on the subject of how trauma affects the brain.  Looking for the evidence of trauma in the body is also a major consideration because if you don't know what you are looking for, it will pass right before your eyes.  You will not even see it.

With all survivors of trauma, there are special considerations that you should be aware of  in working with them, but by all means this is not an exhaustive list.

I still remember my first time working as a volunteer at a domestic violence resource center.  We were doing full body massage on the participants.  One individual came in and got under the sheets while staying fully clothed.  There was no way that this trauma survivor could allow me to work on them without their clothes on.  I learned that day, that you can touch someone with their clothes on and have profound effects.

It helps that I too was a trauma survivor.  It is easier for me to understand what a trauma survivor is going through when I know firsthand in my own body how that feels.  My body did not always like to be touched and it took someone with healthy and safe boundaries to break past this.  I know first hand how difficult it can be to reclaim healthy touch.

For the full paper, click on the following links.  I have broke it up into sections so it is easier to read and navigate.

Reclaiming Healthy Touch 

  1. Introduction
  2. Why Reclaiming Healthy Touch Matters
  3. How Does Trauma Affect The Brain
  4. Evidence Of Trauma In The Body
  5. Special Considerations Reclaiming Healthy Touch
  6. Full Body Massage And Trauma Survivors
  7. Other Forms Of Body Work Helpful To Trauma Survivors
  8. Reclaiming Healthy Touch In My Life
  9. Sources And Additional Resources

If you would like to read more about my story and how I healed my life from trauma which involved conversion disorder and paralysis, my book can be found on Amazon.  It is called Hope And Possibility Through Trauma by Don Shetterly.

Blog Post And Images (c) 2016 by Don Shetterly
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