Why Your Childhood Really Matters (The Hidden Epidemic)


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Clients are frequently oblivious of the consequences of their upbringing. Many people in my practice claim to have had a “wonderful upbringing,” only to learn that they experienced stressful or even poisonous situations as youngsters. What occurred to them many years ago is frequently the reason they are seeking psychotherapy now.

Divorce, parental separation, household alcoholism, and physical and mental abuse are just a few of the stressful experiences known as Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES). Researchers were astounded by both the prevalence and the significant effects of stressful childhoods on physical and mental health in adulthood in the first landmark study two decades ago (Anda & Felitti, 1998).

Childhood trauma’s effects have hitherto gone unnoticed in the psychiatric community. Van der Kolk (2015) has campaigned for the new diagnosis of Developmental Trauma Disorder in the most recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, calling it a “hidden pandemic” (DSM-5). He claims that the wide range of diagnoses given to adults and children is due to the effects of toxic or stressful childhoods. Furthermore, research has revealed that these traumatic childhood events are not only prevalent, but also have a significant impact.

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