The 6 stages of trauma (an early draft)

I’ve just skipped through an interview with one of the world’s top trauma experts, Dr. Gabor Maté, On How Trauma Fuels Disease, on the Rich Roll Podcast. He makes great points with his thesis of culture vs biology, but like seemingly most everyone else, ignores the elephant in the room. His lack of criticism of compulsory schooling stands out like a sore thumb, given the examples in the interview, and how many times he mentions schools, for example, in his book When The Body Says No… thirty-one times; without notably criticising schools themselves even once.

I’ve left a comment on the video, expecting the comment to be either deleted, ignored, or criticised, something like that. But then I’ve actually gotten a great comment on my comment, by Jayzin C:

“This is a really great point. I went to a great public school and was never bullied, but recently at age 36 I’ve thought about the fact that we all had to physically sit there for 6 hours a day with only a little recess or gym in between. How insane? [..] That must’ve had serious impact on our bodies and minds. I know it has for me.”

I agree. Each day schools granted and denied us basic human rights, when we were children, such as: the access to fundamental needs for toilets, water, privacy, and movement. As kids they tried to make us feel indifferent to constant surveillance, age-segregation, bells and confinement, busy work, studying random, unrelated topics, accepting whoever stood before us as authority, sitting in silence without movement for hours on end, et cetera, et cetera, et cet·er·a.

Homework: make a list of all the things they tried to make you feel indifferent to.

This morning, while working on the table of contents for my blog, I’ve come up with my own thesis on trauma healing. In my first draft Trauma comes and goes in 6 steps:

  1. Hurting – the traumatic event that actually hurts whether we know it or not
  2. Shock – the inability to cope with the immensity of the hurting event
  3. Acceptance – the past can’t be changed, so we accept both, that the event has happened as well as our current state of being
  4. Anger – first step of healing
  5. Rejection – not going there anymore, making sure it will not happen again
  6. Outgrow – find new ways, grow into new habits

Uh, what a nice 6 steps, innit?! Not bad for someone who’s not working for a hospital, who doesn’t have agreement contracts with insurance companies, and who isn’t an international bestseller and trauma expert… innit?