What is Complex Trauma?Complex Trauma or Complex PTSD refers to the cumulative toll that experiences such as neglect, emotional abuse, physical or sexual abuse, domestic violence, persistently unsafe situations, or attachment disruptions take on children. The key idea that we have been learning over the past 15 years is that trauma, particularly in early childhood, affects the developing brain and that this can result in a range of social, emotional, and behavioural difficulties which are hard for parents and caregivers to manage.
“The term complex trauma describes both children’s exposure to multiple traumatic events, often of an invasive, interpersonal nature, and the wide-ranging, long-term impact of this exposure. These events are severe and pervasive, such as abuse or profound neglect. They usually begin early in life and can disrupt many aspects of the child’s development and the very formation of a self. Since they often occur in the context of the child’s relationship with a caregiver, they interfere with the child’s ability to form a secure attachment bond. Many aspects of a child’s healthy physical and mental development rely on this primary source of safety and stability. “ National Child Traumatic Stress Network
Do you parent, care for, know, or provide services for a child or youth who:
- Has suffered multiple traumatic experiences?
- Struggles with managing their emotions and behaviour?
- Seems to fly off the handle for no reason?
- Has a range of diagnosis and medications without much progress?
- Struggles to form healthy and close relationships?