Dr. Hofrath

Published On: March 7, 2020

Sometimes Trauma Just Needs A Voice”

– Michael Hofrath PhD

Stories need to be told and experiences need to be heard and understood.  This takes time and someone who is not only a good listener, but sincerely wants to hear what happened. This is a constructivist, narrative, existential, transpersonal and integrative process.

A central theme of philosophical inquiry and the work of novelists, dramatists and poets has included attempts to understand and discover the meaning of human suffering (Tedeschi and Calhoun, 1995).  Numerous clinicians and scientists have acquiesced to the understanding that shamans and highly conscious healers have known for centuries. 

Traumatic experiences and critical life crises do not just happen. They occur because there were lessons that we needed to learn to evolve as human beings. In other words they not only where supposed to occur, but they needed to occur because the wounds they inflicted held the answers and the golden key to our transformation and positive personal change (e.g., Caplan, 1964; Frankl, 1963; Maslow, 1970; Yalom and Lieberman, 1991).  

However, there is a widespread assumption that is incorrect. This assumptive belief is that everyone who experiences trauma or wounding will have a psychological disorder. The actual truth is that personal distress and positive growth often coexist at the same time (Cadell et al., 2003). This is what Jung referred to as the tension of the opposites. The tension of the two opposites creates a third, which Jung referred to as the transcended function. This is the rising of the Phoenix from the ashes to fly once again. However, this time the Phoenix is much stronger and flies more courageously than before.

  1. Posttraumatic growth occurs in the context of suffering and significant psychological struggle. Focus on growth should not come at the expense of empathy for the pain and suffering of trauma survivors. For most trauma survivors, posttraumatic growth and distress often coexist, and growth emerges from the actual struggle with coping, not necessarily from the trauma itself.
  • Trauma is not necessary for growth. Individuals can mature and develop in meaningful ways without experiencing tragedy or trauma.  When we do not pay attention to the needs of psyche, psyche will instigate crisis or trauma to get our attention.
  • No one wants to be a victim of trauma. No rational person willingly chooses to go through pain and suffering of crises, loss or trauma. There is no blame or shame in experiencing trauma.
  • Posttraumatic growth is neither universal nor inevitable. Most individuals who experience a wide array of highly challenging life circumstances also experience posttraumatic growth. Conversely, there are also a significant number of individuals who resist growth and consequently experience little, or no growth in their struggle with trauma.
  • Five, we all have choices. Our lives are a cumulation and a manifestation of all our choices. The path we choose is a choice. We can choose to struggle, or we can choose the path of the Spiritual Warrior.  What path do you choose?

Body Mind Wholeness Blog

Michael ended my suffering and helped me to reclaim my life and find my life purpose. He is a true soul healer who understands the importance of doing the deeper soul work to heal and become whole again. - Drew Read More

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Somatic science evolved from observing how animals overcome traumatic events. Animals have the uncanny ability to dissipate adverse over-reactivity, emotional flooding, fear based behavior, rumination, shame and guilt from their consciousness. Despite frequently facing life threatening situations, animals can quickly return to their normal way of being without holding on to traumatic memories.

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