Trauma-Informed Money Management: ACE Score of 7+; Gaining Clarity in My Third Act (

I almost felt slapped in the face – a wakeup slap; not a punishment – when I read Cissy White’s groundbreaking post describing her joy in finding out her “ACE score.”

Her writing about her elation at learning about the Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) study and questionnaire was an unintentional throw-down on her part. As I read her post I was compelled to reframe my shame, fear, and overall sense of dread about my own high ACE score. (Cissy has given me permission to use her name and to mention her writing.)

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I'm quite certain that "Fore-Shortened Sense of the Future" PTSD 'symptom', was a 'contributing factor' in some of my own adolescent 'Independent Living' challenges, such as moving into my own apartment during my Senior Year of High School, after 'couch surfing' with friends, for a couple months. ...

I wonder what in the World Health Organization's ACE Screening Tool might address this, as it's quite a bit more extensive than the CDC/Kaiser 8/10 question ACE Screening tool. It's called the 'WHO ACE International Questionaire', and is available in over 100 languages on the WHO main page: lower Right corner-last time I checked.


You bring up such an important topic and you write so well. It's a little strange to read my name in your piece but if I helped provoke thoughts, feelings or writing in any way - that makes me so happy.

You wrote:

“Do you think, possibly, that people with high scores who have money issues could be spending money quickly because we think, on some deep level, we might not live to see the next day?” I asked.

Isn't it cool how we get that aha awareness when curious and open and we feel safe? And when we feel we can talk and think and share about our actual issues and experiences? I think there's so much freedom and relief in that even if we have to face uncomfortable stuff. 

I can't wait to learn more from you about trauma-informed approaches to money and security and finances!. Lots of us have been, will be or are in the same boat or one like it floating on the same ocean

Thanks for sharing. I love this passage, too. 

It was a soul-searing moment, as I let what I had asked sink in. The resulting pain and my awareness of it led to the realization that I needed to do more work on my trauma issues and start managing my finances in a “trauma-informed” way, as I realized, on a deep level, that have been a fear-based spender and under-earner most of my life.  How to get to the solution? Sometimes we have to look backward to go forward.

You are a beautiful writer and have so much insight, honesty, and passion. I'm glad writing and this page helped us get to know each other better. Thank you for helping all of us all better understand this issue.



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