Child Abuse, Coronavirus, and Mental Health
Mental Health Awareness Month Every May, advocacy organizations such as Mental Health America come together to raise awareness around needs related to mental health. These needs have increased during the coronavirus pandemic. Now that we have entered the month of June, we should reflect on the lessons learned during Mental Health Awareness Month so we […]
7 Ways to Help a Child Deal with Traumatic Stress
Humans are wired for connection and thrive in conditions of safety and security. When safety and security are compromised, we must do everything we can to restore a child’s felt sense of safety and security as fast as possible.
5 Enlightened Ways to Think About Mental Health
Mental health problems should be thought of no differently than physical health problems. In fact, they are related: mental health problems affect physical health and physical health problems affect mental health.
The Lion Sleeps Tonight
–by Carol Monaco Last night, my 8-year-old son would not go to bed. He wanted to stay up and he wanted us to stay up too. He had a list of things we could do – a very long list. Even as we climbed under the covers, desperately hoping he would follow our lead, he […]
Parenting, Anxiety, and ACEs
Parenting with ACEs doesn’t always require intense therapy. Sometimes all we need is a friend, a conversation, someone to remind us that we will be okay, if not immediately, then eventually.
The Greatest Christmas Gift
A few years ago, my parents flew out from Wisconsin to visit for Christmas. Because they only make it out to California to see us twice a year, and we make it to Wisconsin to visit them even less, it was a pretty big deal. Holidays were hard When we adopted our daughter through foster […]
A New Phase, Part II: Moving On
Last week on the blog, I told you a little about what life was like with my son with complex early trauma. I talked about the lying, the stealing, the fear, the things we did to protect ourselves and him. And I told you that once he turned 18, he outright rejected what he’d always […]
ACEs and Toxic Stress: How We Can Heal Children’s Brains
As a trauma and emotion-centered psychotherapist, I am relieved that children are now being screened for toxic stress. Thinking about mental health as a byproduct of a child’s environment is an important addition to current thinking on how to improve children’s wellbeing. Rushing to diagnose a child with a potentially stigmatizing label, incorrectly blaming “defective” […]
Paying Attention: The Most Exhausting Part of Parenting with ACEs!
[Original version published at ACEs Too High, May 26, 2016] Self-care? What’s that? I used to sneak away for a hot bath as often as possible when my daughter was in the need-me-every-minute years. I’d soak long past when the water went cold and I felt guilty at times but sometimes I needed to be alone. […]
Dear Educator, Part III
Dear educator, Here we are, the last of my three letters about childhood trauma. I appreciate you taking the time to read what I have to say. Here are my last pieces of trauma-sensitive teacher advice. Kids with trauma need teachers to understand that emotional age does not always equal chronological age. From day to […]