More Proof That Early Interventions Are Key

More Proof That Early Interventions Are Key

So, when I see a study like this, I don’t feel defeated, I don’t feel like we are all just broken and doomed to poorer outcomes. I see the possibility that there is room to change this current reality, but it’s going to take changing how we deal with childhood adversity and doing it in an open, honest, and immediate way.

High levels of childhood adversity don’t have to be an early death sentence. We can, and should, intervene early in order to prevent many of these outcomes. We just need the determination and will to make it happen.

Do we have that?

Get Some Help with a Free Mind Plan

Get Some Help with a Free Mind Plan

It’s being offered by the NHS in the UK. Basically, the idea is simple, answer five quick questions about how you’re sleeping, stress, anxiety, etc. and they’ll put together some resources that might help.

Of course, they will also suggest getting some professional help, and more formal resources and those kinds of suggestions should not be taken lightly, but I took the survey, and the things they offered me were things like plans to physically move more, sleep aids, and a mental health app that might help with some of my issues.

French Catholic Church News Reminds Us Again – Boys Get Sexually Abused

French Catholic Church News Reminds Us Again – Boys Get Sexually Abused

Actually, I think it usually takes something like this, or the scandal in the Boy Scouts, etc, to remind people that oh yeah, sometimes it’s boys who are targeted en masse for sexual abuse. I suspect we don’t often think about it because, as it turns out, many men don’t feel like they can talk about having been abused.

That’s why it was a bit heartbreaking to read Phil Goldstein’s recent opinion piece:

French Catholic Church abuse report highlights the special toll faced by boys

As Phil points out, for a variety of reasons, male survivors tend not to talk about being an abuse victim, and the numbers back that up.

Looking at Insurance Data to Identify What Works to Prevent Abuse in an Organization

Looking at Insurance Data to Identify What Works to Prevent Abuse in an Organization

This makes sense. Even something as common and necessary as background checks are only going to catch people who’ve already been caught before. It’s a good thing to do, but it leaves that gap. What doesn’t leave a gap is having policies and procedures in place that prevent anyone from being able to abuse kids when working with your organization. If being alone with a child is simply not acceptable for anyone, that closes those gaps.

As the article goes on, that means rules like not giving kids gifts, not driving them home, etc. That’s what works, and it has to just be the culture in the organization, no questions asked. Create that culture, and you’re making the best effort to protect kids that you can make.

Sharing – How To Identify Grooming Predatory Behavior & Stop It
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Sharing – How To Identify Grooming Predatory Behavior & Stop It

That’s our blind spot. We’re so busy looking for creepy, anti-social, stereotypes that we miss the charming abusers right in our midst, and we miss all the signs and hints that our kids might be dropping because we just didn’t stop to consider that adult to be dangerous. We just assumed they were safe, and our kids would somehow know better anyway.

Clearly, that strategy isn’t working.

Why Suicide Prevention Week Is Important for Child Abuse Survivors

Why Suicide Prevention Week Is Important for Child Abuse Survivors

I’ve survived both childhood abuse, and a suicide attempt. I know what it feels like to believe that it will never get better, just as much as I know that it can get better because it has.

Truthfully, you are a survivor, and the world needs you and your story. How else will the other survivors around you know what is possible?

How We Talk to Ourselves Matters

How We Talk to Ourselves Matters

As you read the rest of the article you’ll see how self-distancing conversations look a lot more like those conversations with friends I referenced earlier. Getting away from all of the “I” and “me” and fairly judging the situation quietly and calmly as if it was happening to someone else can put it into a perspective that we sometimes lose when we are thinking of ourselves, especially those of us who struggle with self-blame. Of course, then that self-blame turns to rumination which feeds into depression, and round and round we go. 

There is a better way, and the examples given can help if we are willing to practice them. Especially the idea of reminding ourselves that we’ve already been through tougher, and more stressful situations and come out the other side.

Is Music Helping You Get Through?

Is Music Helping You Get Through?

Speaking, again, for myself, when I get frustrated with world events, work, or whatever might be irritating me beyond belief at the moment, a good bit of loud music can help me express that and just get it out of my system so that I can then continue on with my life. I find myself getting more and more irritable if I haven’t found a way to express the frustration that I may be feeling at any particular time until it eventually shows up in maybe ways I would rather it doesn’t. So, when I find myself getting more and more frustrated, out come the headphones, and a little punk rock, until I feel better. 

And, really, there is a lot to be frustrated about in the world right now, let alone our individual lives. If some loud music helps me deal with that, so be it. So, let’s at least fill our lives with some music. It certainly can’t hurt. 

What impact does music have on your own emotional well-being? Have you thought about the role it could play in self-care?

Would Everyone Benefit From Having a Therapist?
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Would Everyone Benefit From Having a Therapist?

She goes on to document the appallingly low percentage of people who manage to get therapy, as well as the difference between white patients and minorities. She then goes on to talk about this in the context of the quote above, which I had not considered previously. If finding a therapist is truly like dating, and it is in my experience as well, how do we not only make sure that therapy is available, but that there is more than one to choose from?