Adverse Childhood Experiences

Childhood trauma is often at the base of a lot of people’s personal and social problems especially mental and physical. However, a lot of people do not like to face them or want to which often is itself a result of trauma: “I am not worthy of care; I don’t need to pay attention to my emotions; self-compassion is nothing more than self-pity.” These are some of the reasons they give or internal conversations they have with themselves for not considering whether their childhood experiences are hurting them.

Trauma shatters one’s sense of safety and blocks one journey of being okay with being safe; one is hypervigilant, cynical, critical, overcautious, pleaser, compliant, and avoidant among other blocks…

This is a helpful checklist from the Adverse Childhood Experiences test. Did you experience…

a. Recurrent emotional abuse
b. Recurrent physical abuse
c. Sexual abuse: contact or being forced to watch sexually graphic material.
d. Alcohol and/or drug abusers in the household
e. An incarcerated household member
d. Someone in the household who was chronically depressed, mentally ill, institutionalized or suicidal
e. Your Mother/guardian being treated violently
f. Your Parents’ separation or divorce
g. Emotional neglect
h. Physical neglect

Having 2 – 4+ of the list above may verily place you as someone who had a traumatic childhood and at a higher risk of mental and physical illnesses.

People with 4+ of Adverse Childhood Experiences are: 4.5x more like to experience depression, 3x the levels of lung disease and adult smoking, 11x the level of intravenous drug use, 14x number of suicide attempts, 4x more like to start sexual activities by or before 15, and 2x higher risk of lung disease.

Note, it does not mean that if you had Adverse Childhood Experiences that you will have all the above or some. It means that your risk is higher than someone who did not. It would be useful thus to see both a medical doctor and a counselling/clinical psychologist just to be safe.

Stand up for children. Heal your Hurts.

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