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Lauren Book on Fight, Flight, or Freeze

Somehow, even though this is from 2016, I hadn’t seen it until last night. It’s a TEDx talk by a survivor and advocate Lauren Book. (

She shares her own story and some words about going from the victim to advocate and how we can all advocate for children, but the part that really caught my attention was the beginning, and no, not just because she uses an air horn. It’s the description of our responses to trauma and how they are just part of us, mostly outside of our control, especially as children. Lauren’s freeze response wasn’t just a one-time event either; it went on for years and was tied to thinking that all of it was her own fault.

If this sounds familiar, that’s because it is really common. We just don’t talk about it. We don’t talk about sexual abuse at all, and if we do, this kind of response is usually met with some nasty comments about why we waited to say anything. Those comments simply communicate that the person saying them knows nothing about the brain and trauma response.

Don’t be that person. Watch and learn a thing or two.

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