My Child Recovered From Her Addiction. But I’m Not Sure I Ever Really Will.

A text from my daughter popped up on my phone the other day. “I need to talk to you.”

I immediately texted back, “All OK?”

When she called, it turned out she had a question about her new dog and what kind of food to get him. We had a nice conversation about pet care and dog food, just a normal chat like so many we’ve had in the past. Click here to read more…

How to Recognize and Overcome Trauma

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Psychological trauma impacts many of us—it is estimated 70 percent of adults in the U.S. will experience some type of traumatic event in their lifetime, with 20 percent going on to develop post-traumatic stress disorder after the fact. 

Trauma is an emotional response to a negative event. The effects of trauma can be overwhelming and difficult to understand and move on from. Because trauma can be so hard to process, it’s often difficult to understand the full impact it has on our lives. Click here to read more…

What ‘Rocketman’ Tells Us About Pain and Addiction

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“Rocketman” is a new biopic about the legendary singer Elton John. The emotionally-driven musical fantasy takes some liberties with certain details of John's life, but it illuminates an essential truth: childhood trauma can lead to pain, addiction and other severe health problems.

The movie is generating some Oscar buzz, but it offers more to viewers who want to see how painful childhood experiences can adversely affect people when they become adults. Click here to read more…

10 Things To Know If You Love Someone With PTSD

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Post-traumatic stress disorder is a mental health condition that can be triggered by experiencing or witnessing something traumatic. Many people think of PTSD as a disorder that only military veterans deal with, but it can also occur in reaction to other distressing events like sexual violence, a physical assault, childhood or domestic abuse, a robbery, the sudden death of a loved one, a terrorist attack or a natural disaster. Click here to read more…

Psychogenic Pain: 10 Types of Physical Pain Linked to Emotional Stress

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Our bodies often express what our minds cannot handle feeling, or knowing. This is called psychogenic pain – when physical pain is linked to emotional stress.

Psychogenic pain isn’t a flighty new-age concept. In fact, quite a few studies have looked at the relationship between physical pain and emotional stress. Click here to read more…

Compassion fatigue hits not only professional caregivers. Other people get it, too.

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My lifelong friend Vicki had finally hit the wall. For a long time, she’d tried to lighten the load of a friend who was facing a terminal illness. “As she got sicker, I tried to relieve every burden I could imagine,” Vicki, 61, who asked that her last name not be used for privacy reasons, told me recently. “I figured that compared to what this family was going through, no service I could offer would be too much for me.” Click here to read more…

Calling Addiction A Disease Can Sometimes Hamper Recovery

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Drug addiction is a disease. That has long been the consensus in the medical community, and in recent decades it has filtered down to the general public.

The hope among public-health officials has been that such messaging decreases the moral stigma that traditionally surrounds addiction, and instead will inspire suffering people to stop blaming themselves and get professional help. But newly published research suggests this framework "may have unintended negative consequences." Click here to read more…