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Archive for April, 2015

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Sunday, April 26, 2015.  I am reminding myself today of the essential purity of life.  No less than what exists within a single seed the essential self of a human being is alive with this essential purity at all times – and I believe – forever.

This website gives an impressive accounting of the instant-by-instant state of our global population’s ebb and flow.  Take a look!  CURRENT WORLD POPULATION

As I post this, at THIS exact second, this is our global population – 7,310,819,409

What number do YOU see?  The increases are instantaneous.  Where are we all going?  Is there some bigger REASON we are all HERE?

WHO are we, really?  More than most of us think we are, I am quite certain.

How many of these people are suffering at this instant?  How many of us are whole, healthy, happy?

How long will suffering continue?  How will we, as a species, choose to end this suffering?

How perfect we are in our essential essence.  How many of us think of our Creator during the moments of our days and nights?  It matters not in the big picture exactly how any of us conceptualize this Creator.  There is only one of them.  The One Who loves us and allows us to remain here in our fragile bodies just for the briefest amount of time – to LEARN things we need to know.

Each one of us.  On our own path.  With our own journey, our own questions, seeking for our own solutions.

Oh, my!  I wrote these words – and – now — there are already 7,310,820,190 of us HERE!?!?!

And – now — 7,310,820, 313

By accident or by design?

We WILL get HERE — individually and globally:  UNIVERSAL PEACE

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

Story Without Words:  How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.

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Leave a Comment »

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NOTE:  I am still stuck with this new version of the blog’s posting page that I do not like and cannot get out of.  It has refused to post or include my chosen tags:

adult attachment disordersadult reactive attachment disorderanxiety disorders,borderline motherborderline personality disorderbrain developmentchild abuse,depression,derealizationdisorganized disoriented insecure attachment disorder,dissociation,dissociative identity disorderempathyinfant abusePosttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),protective factorsPTSDresiliencyresiliency factorsrisk factorsshame

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Saturday, April 25, 2015.  My intense involvement and investment of focused care for my little grandsons continues to occupy the majority of my waking time.  Sometimes I catch a glimpse of what I am looking forward to come fall.

It will sadden me deeply to leave this North Dakota town to return to the small southeastern Arizona place that I call home probably in September.  My leaving here, by all other considerations other than family, is a must.  In between now and then I recognize that my thinking self is about as bound up as would be an eagle whose entire body was wrapped up with duct tape from below beak to above feet.

I can mentally hop around a little bit, but other than that I will not again be able to unfold my “hard study” wings for a few more months.

In the meantime, I did need to coalesce my thoughts today enough to dig out the following two measurement scales to pass over to my daughter who is about to direct data collection for her dissertation and for some other areas of research she is being asked to be a part of.

It will be entirely her decision whether or not to include the gathering of this information I am suggesting along with the ACEs questionnaire she will be using.

I did also manage this morning to write an informal treatise to her about how I view the relevance of adding these two measurement scales to her work.  I will be THRILLED if she does so!  In synopsis of my treatise I can simply report that in my thinking early traumatic experiences (Adverse Childhood Experiences) most likely impact “outcoming” adult attachment at the same time that attachment patterns are put into action and communicated for humans through empathy processes.

Empathy is the language of attachment.  Both are fundamentally biophysical/physiological processes, and in the earliest most critical stages of body-brain development they DIRECT that development either in the direction of survival in a mostly benevolent safe and secure world or in the direction of survival in a mostly malevolent unsafe and insecure world.

It is through ATTACHMENT processes as they “speak” via the signaling language of empathetic processes (all physiological) that the conditions of the environment a new person is growing to be a part of are transmitted.

Most likely in nearly ALL cases I would conjecture that very high ACE scores correlate with corresponding degrees of insecure attachment and corresponding empathy impairment.

I believe that it is at this fundamental, most basic level of empathy communication between generations — through attachment interactions as they convey signals about the condition of the environment through the quality of empathy interactions (degrees of resonance, mirroring, attunement, etc.) — that the fullness of unresolved trauma is transmitted to, through and INTO successive generations.

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Advances in the technology of scientific exploration now allow us to SEE these processes in motion from the start of life, as these articles by Dr. Allan N. Schore describe:

Attachment and the regulation of the right brain

Effects of a secure attachment relationship on right brain development, affect regulation, and infant mental health

And here –

VIDEO: Dr. Allan Schore on Attachment Trauma and Effects of Neglect and Abuse on Brain Development (2014)

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The Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) research has essentially begun to crack open the shell of the egg that will hatch out another stage of the evolution of humanity – in an unimaginably glorious new direction.

In the meantime, if there is indeed a strong link between (1) very high ACE scores, (2) insecure attachment disorders and (3) “empathy pathologies” research needs to and CAN find these connections.  I believe that the ACE questionnaire used in research in a three-part combination with measurement tools such as the following, will bring out into the open what matters most.

From there we can take the new emerging light forward to discover solutions.

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SEE ALSO:  ACEsConnection at this link http://www.acesconnection.com

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My recommendations to my daughter to include in her ACE-based research are the

Toronto Empathy Questionnaire (TEQ)

and the

Adult Attachment Scale (AAS) – revised

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Fyi NOTE:  The information in this post came up in conversation recently:

+BRAINWASHING, MIND CONTROL – INFO RELATED TO MY MOTHER

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

Story Without Words:  How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.

++++

Leave a Comment »

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NOTE:  I am still stuck with this new version of the blog’s posting page that I do not like and cannot get out of.  It has refused to post or include my chosen tags:

adult attachment disordersadult reactive attachment disorderanxiety disorders,borderline motherborderline personality disorderbrain developmentchild abuse,depression,derealizationdisorganized disoriented insecure attachment disorder,dissociation,dissociative identity disorderempathyinfant abusePosttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),protective factorsPTSDresiliencyresiliency factorsrisk factorsshame

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Sunday, April 19, 2015.  Going for the ray-of-hope should not cause a crash-and-burn, but should this process even be  a part of the equation?

As long as I am going to think in terms of mathematical metaphor I might as well speak of formulas, as well.  What is the formula for a lifetime of suffering?

Of course the answer would have to be considered from a “relativity” perspective.  Certainly there are horror spots on earth where the percentage of suffering people is so high that having a “good life” is so rare an occurrence that it can hardly be detected – anywhere.

What about in America where the rates of child poverty have increased by 60% in the past 6 years while the wealth of the richest of our population has increased by that same 60% figure?

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All my thinking this morning is “affected infected” by my very brief reading of less than ten paragraphs in the outstanding new book by Dr. Bessel A. van der Kolk that my best friend so generously, and wisely, purchased and mailed to me last week: The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma (2014).

Those few words of this book I read yesterday lit my fire within.  Anger?  You betcha.  Why that response?  It calls comes back for me, again and again, to what is covered in this article by Dr. Martin Teicher:  +Dr. Teicher’s ARTICLE ON TRAUMA ALTERED DEVELOPMENT.

Conflict stimulates anger.  Anger, as that fighting response where a person reaches within for self-knowledge, such as it has been accumulated, can so easily be awakened when something just feels WRONG to us.  Injustice.  Anger is a healthy response to injustice.

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It has taken me nearly 24 hours to calm myself down enough to gain some other perspective about my reactions to my attempt to read this book.  I had high-in-the-sky-apple-pie hopes that in THIS book I was going to find the “quantum healing from trauma” that the author claims lies within its pages.

Does it?

Well, back to the math of this whole thing.  IF someone is in the upper crust of the top, I would say, 95% of the “troubled” population then, yes, there are incredible directions for healing trauma in the body – because, of course, that is where it resides.

IF, however, someone is like I am, a person afflicted by the worst kinds of attachment abusive trauma from the moment of my birth, a person who had no significant safe and secure attachment with any adult throughout the 18 years of my traumatic childhood, then – no – the book is missing its mark in helping me in the ways that the author intended that help to come across in his writing.

NOW this morning, having gotten my own jigger on my own line, I went fishing online and found MY version of how this whole problem – along with its “maybe” and mostly missing solution – is appearing and not appearing.  I went to this site:  World Wildlife Federation where I located the list of all the species on earth that are endangered and threatened with extinction at the “hands of humankind.”

Gee.  What a deal.  I feel better now.  I have my context, my perspective, my angle covered.  It is in this kind of dangerous world that people like me were formed so that we have the kind of Trauma Altered Development that Dr. Teicher’s article is beginning to describe.

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I have done a lot of background studying which has prepared me to approach a book like this new one by van der Kolk with a critical mind.  (I have not added to my main reference list since early 2009 when I began this blog (later research that crossed my path has been included directly in blog posts since that time), but CLICK HERE will provide a look at some of this background.  It might load slowly because it is one heck of a list.)

Critical.  What about those of us who were abused, neglected, hated, harmed, threatened, terrorized and terrified by even our mothers from the moment of our birth?  Where do we fit into the CDC ACE study pyramid?

At the bottom.  So far down at the bottom of “what went wrong” in our earliest critical months and years of development so as to NOT fit into any kind of overall discussion of how to heal trauma?  Just about.

I have written many posts for this blog in past years in which I have estimated the secure vs insecure attachment breakdowns.  Even at the VERY HIGH estimate that 65% of the population received “good enough” mothering, that leaves a vital breakdown of that insecurely attached 35% to be – what?  Let’s say in general that of this group 15% have an “avoidant organized insecure attachment pattern,” 15% of a “preoccupied” and the bottom 5% (where I reside) have what I refer to as a “disorganized disoriented insecure attachment pattern” built body brain.

That lowest 5% is basically missing from van der Kolk’s discussion.  Yesterday discovering this sent the anger ripples through me just like I experienced during so much of my earlier research.  Then I discovered Dr. Allan N. Schore and from there to my “final” answers in Dr. Teicher’s work.

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Before I write any more here I will mention to those readers who have The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma at their fingertips, these are the pages I read yesterday that I am referring to here today:  First I turned to the section on healing and my volcano erupted at pages 204-205;  they I went to the index and went back to read about attachment on pages 113 -115.  That was all I could stomach, all I could tolerate.  I attached my sticky notes in margins on those pages, closed the book, telephoned my dear friend who is on the “same page” I am in his life as a trauma-altered individual, and then I went within myself to examine my reactions.

In all fairness I will state that van der Kolk is right – right on down the lines of his writing – about trauma and its healing – as far as his thinking as it shows in his book is going.  It does NOT go far enough, I don’t believe, for those suffering the most from terribly abusive, neglectful traumatic early life experiences.

By late last evening I had calmed myself down by honoring my own reality enough to say that given what I so reacted to at first reading (and I will include those words here below), if “restore” and “restoration” is at all possible for me I can AT LEAST consider that I COULD be restored in my physiology to the point my development was in before I was born.  Most importantly I was NOT trauma altered during the first 9 months of my life in the womb.

From that realization — and I might say that it is primarily the in-built assumption in the concept of “resiliency” which suggests that attempts to heal are about going back to a pre-traumatized state AFTER A TRAUMA OCCURS – I understand that to apply these lines of thinking to myself is only possible if I go back to my womb-life as the “good” point for me.

Well….  At least I have THAT!

This morning I understand that a writer like van der Kolk is NOT going to specify every possible exception to what he is talking about regarding healing trauma.  He is not going to say, “Well, for the bottom 5% my “formula” is not going to work the way I am suggesting, and not for people with Autism Spectrum Disorder, etc.”

SO?  I will bold for emphasis in the passages from his book, pages 204-205, some of what I am talking about:

However, trauma is much more than a story about something that happened long ago.  The emotions and physical sensations that were imprinted during the trauma are experienced not as memories but as disruptive physical reactions in the present.

[Right here I would say that I consider these “physical sensations” to be BODY MEMORIES….  What van der Kolk writes is true – of course – he is the expert.  I recommend this book.  BUT, here comes the parts, and they appeared quickly in this section, that set me on fire….]

The fundamental issue in resolving traumatic stress is to restore the proper balance between the rational and emotional brains, so that you can feel in charge of how you respond and how you conduct your life.

[Those of us with Trauma Altered Development – again, see Dr. Teicher’s article above – have our trauma BUILT into our body.  It BUILT our body.  We do NOT have the kind of “ordinary” body that van der Kolk is referring to by default.]

Recovery from trauma involves the restoration of executive functioning and, with it, self-confidence and the capacity for playfulness and creativity.

[Same problems!!!  As Teicher describes, we do NOT have a brain (or nervous system, immune system, etc.) that was ever (unless, like in my case, we can go back to our womb development as being OK) NOT being poisoned by trauma to the extent that we are physiologically different from ordinary people who did NOT get “built in, by and for” a malevolent world.  Our body and our brain are different from what van der Kolk is describing.  So, what about US?  What about me?]

If we want to change posttraumatic reactions, we have to access the emotional brain and do “limbic system therapy”: repairing faulty alarm systems and restoring the emotional brain to its ordinary job of being a quiet background presence that takes care of the housekeeping of the body, ensuring that you eat, sleep, connect with intimate partners, protect your children, and defend against danger.

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In essence I do not, then, actually have POSTTRAUMATIC reactions.  I don’t have a POST to trauma because (except for the first 9 months of my existence in the womb) TRAUMA HAS ALWAYS BEEN PRESENT IN MY LIFE.  Even though I am fortunate to be living a life that does not include overt trauma I do not escape the “covert” impact of massive trauma because it is BUILT INTO MY BODY – permanently.

This “emotional” brain, this “limbic system” I have was permanently changed in its development by early horrific attachment-based severely abusive, psychotic-in-Mother, trauma.  I have no other kind of brain to “access” unless someone up there in the “upper 95%” wants to give or lend me theirs?

It is true that restoring the emotional brain to its ordinary job of being a quiet will not work for people like me.  Autistic people refer to those in that 95% as van der Kolk is addressing them as being “neurotypical people.”  I am not autistic but neither am I “neurotypical.”  People like me, those Dr. Teicher describes, are “something else.”  We are an “endangered species.”

So – now what?  I can wish all I want to that I did not “get drawn this way” so that I cannot RETURN, RESTORE, or “go back to” any state in my body-brain that is not under the influence of my Trauma Altered Development.  Knowing this I am perfectly free to try to diminish my inward “give me a fighting chance to heal in spite of how I am” solar flares so that I can learn what van der Kolk is suggesting for healing.

However, the warning to those like me is that when we read a book like this one is and do NOT know the rest of our story as I am describing it, we can end up being greatly harmed because we cannot seem to accomplish these wonderful levels of healing this author is suggesting are possible for EVERYONE in the same way and to the same extent.  We can feel terrible about our self and about our efforts because “we can’t get there from here.”

The “problem” is NOT in any way connected to our being inadequate students of “the master!”  My emotional brain was NEVER free to “be quiet.”  I was never even allowed to play.  What is being described as healing in this book is entirely foreign to me as if a life is being described on a planet completely alien to me.

I need to honor that fact and then find my own way to make the best-of-the-best use of whatever information this book contains that CAN help me – in spite of the trauma that that will never be erased from my body-brain as long as I am alive in this world.

I am not being nit-picky.  I am not being “resistant” or “belligerent.”  I am speaking about and for the “bottom 5%.”  We DO NOT give up but we DO become in-formed about the truths of our own life and then go from forward from there.  Nobody will clarify our reality for us!  We MUST trust our self every step of the way:  We are NOT the same as ordinary people.  For the most part we are unique beyond “ordinary” understanding.  We are a special kind of miracle.

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

Story Without Words:  How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.

++++

Leave a Comment »

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NOTE:  I am still stuck with this new version of the blog’s posting page that I do not like and cannot get out of.  It has refused to post or include my chosen tags:

adult attachment disordersadult reactive attachment disorderanxiety disorders,borderline motherborderline personality disorderbrain developmentchild abuse,depression,derealizationdisorganized disoriented insecure attachment disorder,dissociation,dissociative identity disorderempathyinfant abusePosttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),protective factorsPTSDresiliencyresiliency factorsrisk factorsshame

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Friday, April 17, 2015.  Not to be ignored!  Lady Gaga’s mother writes about what it was like raising such a special child as her daughter and about the suffering her girl experienced growing up at the mercy of the cruelty of her peers — and what they are both doing to help other youth now::

As with my daughter, too many of these young people were facing turmoil—at school, at home, or in their neighborhoods—that was impacting their emotional health and overall well-being. Again and again, we heard stories of depression, anxiety, and isolation hampering their ability to thrive personally and academically. Most worrying of all were the stories that included self-harm and suicide attempts.

“That’s why my daughter and I founded Born This Way Foundation. Grounded in the belief that the world can—and must—be a kinder and braver place, our organization is working to inspire young people to lead the best life possible and empower them with the tools they need to get there.”

Read more here!!

Raising Lady Gaga: Cynthia Germanotta on Why It’s Time for an Emotion Revolution

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Mission Statement:  “Born This Way Foundation is committed to supporting the wellness of young people, and empowering them to create a kinder and braver world.  We achieve this by shining a light on real people, quality research and authentic partnerships.”

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

Story Without Words:  How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.

++++

Leave a Comment »

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NOTE:  I am still stuck with this new version of the blog’s posting page that I do not like and cannot get out of.  It has refused to post or include my chosen tags:

adult attachment disordersadult reactive attachment disorderanxiety disorders,borderline motherborderline personality disorderbrain developmentchild abuse,depression,derealizationdisorganized disoriented insecure attachment disorder,dissociation,dissociative identity disorderempathyinfant abusePosttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),protective factorsPTSDresiliencyresiliency factorsrisk factorsshame

Read Full Post »

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Thursday, April 16, 2015.  For those of you who can access Facebook here is a video that will steal the heart.  It is of a tribe of elephants crossing a river with a little one who gets trapped in the current, unable to reach shore.  The tender concern of the adults for this small one’s distress motivates them to take ACTION to help it.  I don’t think I could ever tire of watching elephants if I had the chance!  They are an epitome of love!

I thought of my post yesterday about our primary survival emotions as we make our way through life:  +CIRCLES AND CYCLES OF OUR “CALM-STRESS” RESPONSE SYSTEM

The little elephant, was it feeling terrified?  The adults.  Did they feel that powerful “anger” energy as they rescued that baby?  Did they feel fear when more members of their tribe had to be called to assist?  Did they simply KNOW that help would come and all would be well?

Certainly when all is said and done, as they amble off, they appear to be most calm, most peaceful.

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I was reminded of something that happened the summer of 1969 just after I graduated from high school (I could not think of leaving home until I turned 18 the last day of that summer’s August).  Our family was living on our Alaskan mountain homestead.  I had gone into the town of Anchorage with my father.

As we returned home driving down the valley’s Jeep road through the long shadows of an Alaskan late evening, and came to the shallow small pond (really) homesteaders referred to as Mud Lake, we were stopped by a very newly born brilliant cinnamon moose calf standing alone on the road beside the edge of the water.  Just into the muddy and bloody lake itself lay the remains of its mother’s carcass.

Mud Lake seemed to be a favored dining spot for moose that lived on the other side of the river’s fork.  Often late in summer afternoons numbers of them would be standing around in murky water below their knees.  As cars approached they would raise their majestic heads, chewing some tasty weed they dredged from the muddy lake bottom, drooling water as their soft eyes gazed at humans as if we were the odd entrants to this valley that had always been their home.

And then there were the poachers.

And then there was this most gorgeous delicate creature who, as soon as Father stopped our Jeep, raced across the road in front of us as it tried to scramble up a very steep slope of the mountain that ran right down to Mud Lake.

Father, in that quiet matter-of-fact way of his, told me to get out to “watch” the baby while he drove as fast as he could (on that narrow, rutted primitive road) to the nearest homesteader’s house to get a rope.

I got out.

He drove off as he edged close to the lake shoulder side of the road around the calf as it scrambled and fell again and again to it small knees and skidded down through the loose gravel of that rocky hill.

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Watching this elephant video.  The dangers of river currents.  Adult animals with no way to grab a baby in its mouth, no way to pick it up in arms.  Illegally killed mother moose unable to do anything then for her baby.

And me.  Now, thinking about the post I wrote yesterday I can understand that PERHAPS if I had NOT MYSELF have been such an extremely traumatized person from the time I was born and for the next 18 years that I had no inward ability to FEEL ANGER and I had no ability to FIGHT for myself whatsoever — maybe I could have done the RIGHT thing.

If I had ever shown anger Mother could see, if I had EVER tried to fight her back, she would have killed me.  I knew that.  I have always known that.

BUT

WHAT IF?

Now, the way those mother moose crossed that powerful current of that glacial cold dark aqua river water was to step in with her baby stepping in at her side so the current pressed the little one against her flank as they safely crossed together.

That’s how it’s done for moose.

That’s the way it HAS to be done to protect the babies in the world, the same way this video shows how elephants have to help their young.

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And there I was.  Victimized survivor beyond belief.  There was the baby and I know now I was POWERLESS to help it!  I was so FROZEN inside of myself!  I could not run and yell and wave my arms in the air to keep from happening what happened next.

The little wilderness creature, the most beautiful I have ever seen, finally skidded on its knees one last frantic panic time, turned toward Mud Lake and ran at full speed across the road, crashing around the lake’s marshy shore straight at – and into — the river.  I didn’t SEE the little one hit the water.  I HEARD it.

I didn’t SEE the little one drown.

But I have always known, all these 46 years since I stood helplessly (as I had ALWAYS been), that there was no possible way that baby survived that swim without the wisdom and help of its mother.

I don’t BLAME myself for the death of the calf.  But of course now I wonder if I could have kept it alive until Father returned with his rope if I had been able to ACT with that kind of ANGER power and energy I tried to describe in yesterday’s post.

As it was, Father made that trip to the neighbor’s for nothing.  But at least once he saw the calf was gone, understood immediately what that meant, turned the Jeep around and stopped for me to get back inside, he said nothing.

Nothing.

That, in my childhood, was the best I could hope for.

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

Story Without Words:  How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.

++++

Leave a Comment »

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NOTE:  I am still stuck with this new version of the blog’s posting page that I do not like and cannot get out of.  It has refused to post or include my chosen tags:

adult attachment disordersadult reactive attachment disorderanxiety disorders,borderline motherborderline personality disorderbrain developmentchild abuse,depression,derealizationdisorganized disoriented insecure attachment disorder,dissociation,dissociative identity disorderempathyinfant abusePosttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),protective factorsPTSDresiliencyresiliency factorsrisk factorsshame

Read Full Post »

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Thursday, April 16, 2015.  Are we to become mindfully mindful of mindfulness?  Take a look.  What do you think?

The Muddied Meaning of ‘Mindfulness,’ NYTimes.com

The New York Times takes a critical look at the definition and history of Mindfulness.

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

Story Without Words:  How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.

++++

Leave a Comment »

++++

NOTE:  I am still stuck with this new version of the blog’s posting page that I do not like and cannot get out of.  It has refused to post or include my chosen tags:

adult attachment disordersadult reactive attachment disorderanxiety disorders,borderline motherborderline personality disorderbrain developmentchild abuse,depression,derealizationdisorganized disoriented insecure attachment disorder,dissociation,dissociative identity disorderempathyinfant abusePosttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),protective factorsPTSDresiliencyresiliency factorsrisk factorsshame

Read Full Post »

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Wednesday, April 15, 2015.  I have had many friends over many years of my adulthood who are of Indigenous ancestry.  Among most tribes, as far as I know, there are teachings based on what can most simply be called “The Medicine Wheel.”  Tribes vary on the words that might literally be attached to the four directions presented in these wheels (as with colors, stages of life, specific teachings, medicines, animals, etc.).

The words about the “core wheel” itself I am going to describe here are from a common Anishinabeg (Chippewa, Ojibwa) culture.  Along with those words I will next describe an alternative, additional way of thinking about so-called “negative” emotions that can be identified as being “survival-based” emotions connected to the operation of our “calm-stress” response system (and are therefor deeply physiologically based).

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I have no way to create a visual for what I wish to describe other than to attempt to do it with words.  (If you wish, just grab paper and pen/pencil and draw this out as you read along here.)  Envision a circle.  Draw quadrant lines top to bottom, side to side so that they cross at the center.

I will be listing words here in groups that begin at the far right of the circle and move, then, around the circle at each quadrant point.

  • EAST: element = air (mind) —  color = yellow – place of new birth and rebirth – ages 0  – 20
  • SOUTH: element = earth (spirit) – color = red – place of “doing the work” – ages 20 – 40
  • WEST: element = water (emotion) – color = black – place of “the cave” and introspection – ages 40 – 60
  • NORTH: element = fire (body) – color = white – place of healing – ages 60 – 80 (over age 80 lies in the quadrant area leaving the top point and moving toward the right = east)

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Now, as I think about the processes and emotions of the cycles of our life (for everyone at some time, in some way) I think about the

(a) uncountable times we have been “alerted” to changes within our environment that

(b) give us a version of a “startle response” as these things

(c) demand our immediate attention and assessment for safety or danger, and then

(d) send us either off to address/solve a “problem” or are

(e) no big deal so we have to do nothing and

(f) can return again to the center point of self = peaceful calm

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IF we have to do something we are put into MOTION!  On my calm-stress response” circle I added

  • ANGER at the EAST point. FIGHT RESPONSE.  Anger is itself simply a word that people identify with a particular emotion, but in my thinking I use it only as a symbol of power and energy that is extremely creative and full of potential.  With this power and energy I envision (in-vision) that we very quickly reach for the most immediately recognized solution to a problem in our environment we have to deal with that we can find.  We use first KNOWN solutions, KNOWN resources and if possible our OWN resources.  (simplified descriptions here)  The power of so-called “anger” used constructively and positively inspires determination, know-how and courage.   If a problem’s solution overwhelms our ability in this “anger” (generative), rather than move back to “center” we are forced by circumstances to move on to
  • FEAR at the SOUTH point. FLIGHT RESPONSE.  Fear again is a word, a symbol, that I am using to signify a realization in our process as I describe it here that WE ALONE are powerless to solve this problem and we MUST reach out (FLEE is as much TO something as it is AWAY from something) to others* for help as we search for alternative options.  THIS is part of the shared work of being alive!  It is when soaring solo is replaced by a realization that if we are going to fly at all we must “find a flock” to help us.  (This is also a state we can reach when our concern for the well-being of others (fear for others) leads us to understand that if we are going to help we cannot be effective alone.)  Fear, then, generates a kind of social interaction that involves something we may not have tried before and something more familiar to others.  If we CANNOT get help from anyone else at this point FEAR lets us know that we are directly missing a vital resource (and solution) that we need.  However the variables in this stage play themselves out, either we solve the problem and return to “center” or we move on to
  • SADNESS at the WEST point. HIDE RESPONSE.  Whether or not we reach this point alone or in the company of others who share this “state” what is needed is a discovery of something entirely NEW that can solve whatever problem we are engaged in ending.  This “cave” of inner exploration to find new solutions is like a womb, a matrix, a place of introspection and ingenuity!  I am not envisioning “only” a weepy sorrowful emotional state here.  I believe that it is HERE that our greatest discoveries can be made and amazing ideas can be found.  If we can solve our problem here back to “center” we go, if not?  We move on to
  • HOPELESSNESS at the NORTH point. FREEZE RESPONSE.  This state involves a kind of fire, I think, that is a kind of agony.  This point is one of purification and can be named by a feeling state of utter “hopelessness” in which a sense of being abandoned and completely alone can swallow us whole.  Or so it seems.  This point is often one of deepest humility which is a gift, I believe, that can come from “pure shame transformed.”  Humans are NOT superheroes.  We do not have “magical” powers.  There are times when the cycles of life seem to present us with no solutions.  No options.  No alternatives.  If so, here we are in a state of suspended animation, a state of limbo, a state of purification that I don’t think anyone WISHES for!  This can be the state where the only thing we know how to do is ENDURE.

Who cares enough to find the “lost and hidden” sad and hopeless people when so many of them have faced or are facing severe trauma that alone they cannot move past?  Who has the empathy, compassion and SKILLS to reach them and to help them?

How do we move out of this frozen “stuck” dead-end place?  I would rather be asking “How do we (and I mean mostly “we the people”) avoid – and help one another avoid – ever getting to this point at all?”  Something extraordinary has to happen for us to move on from here.  HEALING!

How that healing happens is a concern for everyone.  I do not believe we can do it alone.  This is the place of miracles.

Not to worry.  Such miracles are not rare!

NOTE:  *others – our “attachment village” – assistance when needed is always a part of safe and secure attachment

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(And this thoughts include my concerns about early severe trauma survivors who have never known “peaceful calm” and cannot get back to that “center” because they were never given what they needed in the early years of their attachment development to get there in the first place.  Many such survivors can be trapped swirling around through these cycles without end for their entire lives.)

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(This “in-visioning” I am writing today is different from a version of this process I posted a few months ago.)

Note:  This is a post that follows this one:  +WHAT IF?

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

Story Without Words:  How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.

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Leave a Comment »

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NOTE:  I am still stuck with this new version of the blog’s posting page that I do not like and cannot get out of.  It has refused to post or include my chosen tags:

adult attachment disordersadult reactive attachment disorderanxiety disorders,borderline motherborderline personality disorderbrain developmentchild abuse,depression,derealizationdisorganized disoriented insecure attachment disorder,dissociation,dissociative identity disorderempathyinfant abusePosttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),protective factorsPTSDresiliencyresiliency factorsrisk factorsshame

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Tuesday, April 14, 2015.  What follows in this post are my morning’s thoughts about attachment.

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Attachment occurs in a matrix, a creational/re-creational womb.

Attachment –

is at the core of human affairs and directs development and shapes responses

organizes relationships, all the way to the level of global civilization

is a form of intelligence commission and transmission

sets the patterns for interactions

is a living process and a process of living

literally enables and allows life to go on

shapes life

communicates the conditions of life

its patterns remember themselves within people from conception until death and communicate themselves down the generations

attachment has a language of its own

it shows itself through its patterns like everything else does that is a part of life

at each end of the continuum of human life attachment is life, un-attachment (detachment) is death (coherence/incoherence; generation/degeneration; movement toward order and complexity/toward disorder/lack of complexity)

in between, taken objectively, attachment talks to attachment

we are its carriers, its transmitters, expressers of the language of its signals

attachment is about resources (their availability/scarcity/accessibility) – it is about signals/communications about resource patterns.  without resources to sustain life there is death.

attachment is how life takes care of life as it prepares for its continuation (through time into the future)

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taken from this angle attachment is a resource management system capable of communication about its operations

ongoing generations of human beings are recipients of benefits from improvements to resource (their availability/scarcity/accessibility) management.  because attachment processes have no ulterior motives and exist to manage resources and to communicate those concerns, attachment will improve as resource management improves

“resiliency” cannot, therefore, be conceived of as being outside this life support and enhancement system

given that this view of attachment is simplified as if considering the very building blocks of life itself it is possible to suggest that in whatever direction we turn we will find the essential processes of attachment in operation.

because we are considering humans, the apex of creation as we know it, and because the apex of humanity is the solidified, conscious, socially responsible self, it will be the experience of this self (its formation, maintenance and expression) that will suffer most when depleted resource management damages attachment and it will benefit most when adequate resource management allows attachment to flourish.  The former = degrees of (both organized and disorganized) insecure attachment and the latter = increasing degrees of safe and secure attachment.

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In its essence I would call attachment love.  I would call this love spiritual.  I would say that a Creator we are incapable of comprehending loved creation into existence.

Attachment is the process of love in motion as it sustains existence in this world.  It is therefore fundamental and essential to life.  Because in this world humans have been given free will to make choices we can influence many attachment processes.

For this, in the next world, we will be held accountable.

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On a practical level when it comes to current attempts to “measure” adult attachment the following maxims as they are considered to be reflected within rational ‘cooperative discourse’, and have been incorporated into the rating structure of the Adult Attachment Interview (AAI) used clinically and in research to assess adult attachment.

Grice’s Conversational Maxims

Maxim of Quantity:

  1. Make your contribution to the conversation as informative as necessary.
  2. Do not make your contribution to the conversation more informative than necessary.

Maxim of Quality:

  1. Do not say what you believe to be false.
    2. Do not say that for which you lack adequate evidence.

Maxim of Relevance:

Be relevant (i.e., say things related to the current topic of the conversation).

Maxim of Manner:

  1. Avoid obscurity of expression.
    2. Avoid ambiguity.
    3. Be brief (avoid unnecessary wordiness).
    4. Be orderly.

These maxims are mentioned in this post:

+NEEDY PEOPLE AND BUMPY CONVERSATIONS (GRICE’S MAXIMS, AGAIN!)

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

Story Without Words:  How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.

++++

Leave a Comment »

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NOTE:  I am still stuck with this new version of the blog’s posting page that I do not like and cannot get out of.  It has refused to post or include my chosen tags:

adult attachment disordersadult reactive attachment disorderanxiety disorders,borderline motherborderline personality disorderbrain developmentchild abuse,depression,derealizationdisorganized disoriented insecure attachment disorder,dissociation,dissociative identity disorderempathyinfant abusePosttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),protective factorsPTSDresiliencyresiliency factorsrisk factorsshame

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Monday, April 13, 2015.  I remember a decade ago scouring the dense pages of books (I now refer to as “hisci”) written by people like Dr. Allan N. Schore, Dr. Daniel Siegel, Dr. Jon Allen, and others in my desperate attempt to gain some useful information to help me understand how what happened to me in my abusive childhood was connected to the many and varied difficulties I experience in adulthood.  It is very gratifying to me to see the online proliferation – in clear writing and in such beautiful formats – of this kind of information appearing all over the place in today’s “modern” website formats.

There is no end to how important early attachment information is to EVERYONE!  It is especially critical for early severe trauma survivors, and even those who would not “ordinarily” name their childhood as traumatic, neglectful or abusive to begin to understand how essential ESPECIALLY the experiences a human being has in the world before the age of three are to wiring a person up in their body-brain as the main patterns of their operations through life will be determined by these person-to-person events.

Please take a look at this short and well written online presentation of such information:

How Hard Will He Have to Work? 

This article starts off with –

Fascinating research suggests we can predict how hard a person will have to work to feel good, based upon the quality of early attachment in the first 18 months of life.  This study measured the long term effects of early  attachment on long-term emotional regulation into adulthood, including a person’s ability to have a positive neurochemical response to positive experiences.”

It doesn’t matter what angle any researcher – or any serious investigator of any kind – takes in looking at the escapable, powerful impact of the earliest attachment interactions humans have at the start of their life to understand that EVERYTHING we experience throughout our entire life runs through the brain (nervous system) wiring and circuitry that is created and installed within all of us LONG before we usually consider this kind of heavy-hitting influence possible.

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It remains my “sideline” concern that those babies being born to mothers who “must” leave their infants in daycare settings are setting their offspring up for a lifetime of difficulties that nobody will trace back to the “attachment abandonment” these little ones experienced during the bulk of their waking interactional time early in their life.

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This is an excellent website:  HANDS ARE FOR HOLDING – stopspanking.org

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

Story Without Words:  How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.

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Leave a Comment »

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NOTE:  I am stuck with a new version of the blog’s posting page that I do not like and cannot get out of.  It has refused to post or include my chosen tags:

adult attachment disordersadult reactive attachment disorderanxiety disorders,borderline motherborderline personality disorderbrain developmentchild abuse,depression,derealizationdisorganized disoriented insecure attachment disorder,dissociation,dissociative identity disorderempathyinfant abusePosttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),protective factorsPTSDresiliencyresiliency factorsrisk factorsshame

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Saturday, April 11, 2015.  Here is yet another expert’s word about the impact of trauma and hopes for its healing.  This is the link to one of Dr. Bessel A. van der Kolk’s talks on this subject where you can listen free of charge.  Dr. van der Kolk is a Dutch psychiatrist noted for his research in the area of post-traumatic stress since the 1970s.  His work focuses on the interaction of attachment, neurobiology, and developmental aspects of trauma’s effects on people —

Psychiatrist Bessel Van Der Kolk’s Dangerous Idea? Trauma is a leading public health problem and we have to fix it.

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Dr. van der Kolk is the author of

The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma (2014)

Trauma is a fact of life. Veterans and their families deal with the painful aftermath of combat; one in five Americans has been molested; one in four grew up with alcoholics; one in three couples have engaged in physical violence. Such experiences inevitably leave traces on minds, emotions, and even on biology. Sadly, trauma sufferers frequently pass on their stress to their partners and children.

Renowned trauma expert Bessel van der Kolk has spent over three decades working with survivors. In The Body Keeps the Score, he transforms our understanding of traumatic stress, revealing how it literally rearranges the brain’s wiring—specifically areas dedicated to pleasure, engagement, control, and trust. He shows how these areas can be reactivated through innovative treatments including neurofeedback, mindfulness techniques, play, yoga, and other therapies. Based on Dr. van der Kolk’s own research and that of other leading specialists, The Body Keeps the Score offers proven alternatives to drugs and talk therapy—and a way to reclaim lives.”

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Traumatic Stress: The Effects of Overwhelming Experience on Mind, Body, and Society (1996)

This bestselling classic presents seminal theory and research on posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Together, the leading editors and contributors comprehensively examine how trauma affects an individual’s biology, conceptions of the world, and psychological functioning. Key topics include why certain people cope successfully with traumatic experiences while others do not, the neurobiological processes underlying PTSD symptomatology, enduring questions surrounding traumatic memories and dissociation, and the core components of effective interventions. A highly influential work that laid the foundation for many of the field’s continuing advances, this volume remains an immensely informative and thought-provoking clinical reference and text.”

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This is the home page of The Trauma Center, with pages for clinical and educational services, and Dr. Bessel A. van der Kolk’s Trauma Center Research:

TRAUMA CENTER at Justice Resource Institutehttp://www.traumacenter.org/

The Trauma Center is a program of Justice Resource Institute (JRI), a large nonprofit organization dedicated to social justice by offering hope and promise of fulfillment to children, adults, and families who are at risk of not receiving effective services essential to their safety, progress, and/or survival. The Executive Director of the Trauma Center is Joseph Spinazzola, Ph.D., and the Medical Director and Founder of the Trauma Center is Bessel van der Kolk, MD, who is an internationally recognized leader in the field of psychological trauma.

The Trauma Center provides comprehensive services to traumatized children and adults and their families at the main office in Brookline.

In addition to clinical services, The Trauma Center offers training, consultation, and educational programming for post-graduate mental health professionals. Our Certificate Program in Traumatic Stress Studies has state-of-the-art seminars, lectures and supervision groups. Our monthly Lecture Series is open to all mental health professionals.

The Trauma Center Research Department is housed at our Brookline location and is also directed by Dr. van der Kolk. The Research Department conducts studies on traumatic memory and how treatment effects trauma survivors’ minds, bodies, and brains.

At this Web site you will find a wealth of information – on our clinical services, on our training, consultation and education programs, and on Dr. van der Kolk and others’ research and theories. Whether you are in therapy or a therapist, a student or a scholar, a lawyer or a judge, a representative of the media, you can learn a great deal here.”

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

Story Without Words:  How Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.

++++

Leave a Comment »

++++

NOTE:  I am stuck with a new version of the blog’s posting page that I do not like and cannot get out of.  It has refused to post or include my chosen tags:

adult attachment disordersadult reactive attachment disorderanxiety disorders,borderline motherborderline personality disorderbrain developmentchild abuse,depression,derealizationdisorganized disoriented insecure attachment disorder,dissociation,dissociative identity disorderempathyinfant abusePosttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD),protective factorsPTSDresiliencyresiliency factorsrisk factorsshame

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