The impact of trauma/ eating disorders and Type 2 diabetes

A question for the Community: i just recently joined and i focus on how violence impacts the ability to learn from a whole life perspective. I have just shared my own story living with type 2 diabetes , recovering from an eating disorder and coming from a history of trauma, using mindfulness, trauma informed therapy as a process and other modalities. My background is: Social Worker, Community Activist, Artist.  I would like to begin a conversation about the intersection of trauma and disabetes other chronic illness and eating disorders. 

www.vlcollaborative.wordpress.com 

The Learning and Violence Collaborative.  

Original Post

Sheri:

If you've not seen this article in the Atlantic (two years old) it's worth checking out. The Second Assault: Victims of childhood sexual abuse are far more likely to become obese adults. New research shows that early trauma is so damaging that it can disrupt a person's entire psychology and metabolism.

 It's an important discussion you are having and I'd love to learn more as well. Cissy

Christine Cissy White posted:

Sheri:

If you've not seen this article in the Atlantic (two years old) it's worth checking out. The Second Assault: Victims of childhood sexual abuse are far more likely to become obese adults. New research shows that early trauma is so damaging that it can disrupt a person's entire psychology and metabolism.

 It's an important discussion you are having and I'd love to learn more as well. Cissy


Thanks @Christine Cissy White (AC Staff) for sharing the article. All I can say is WOW! I am in such a tender place right now. I am not overweight, in fact I have lost a lot of weight because of lifestyle changes, however I binge eat a lot. My daughter is 3 now and I think it is a huge trigger for me to childhood trauma. I am not sure, but I am in pain and the catchy part is that I am in my last semester of school for mental health counselor. But how can I help others with my own stuff in the way. I've been wanting to try yoga for some time now. 

Monica Kline posted:
Christine Cissy White posted:

Sheri:

If you've not seen this article in the Atlantic (two years old) it's worth checking out. The Second Assault: Victims of childhood sexual abuse are far more likely to become obese adults. New research shows that early trauma is so damaging that it can disrupt a person's entire psychology and metabolism.

 It's an important discussion you are having and I'd love to learn more as well. Cissy


Thanks @Christine Cissy White (AC Staff) for sharing the article. All I can say is WOW! I am in such a tender place right now. I am not overweight, in fact I have lost a lot of weight because of lifestyle changes, however I binge eat a lot. My daughter is 3 now and I think it is a huge trigger for me to childhood trauma. I am not sure, but I am in pain and the catchy part is that I am in my last semester of school for mental health counselor. But how can I help others with my own stuff in the way. I've been wanting to try yoga for some time now. 

Hi Monica, Cissy, and Sheri!  Great conversation here!  Monica, I just finished my graduate degree in clinical mental health counseling and I thought you REALLY pinpointed an issue when you asked how you can help others if you haven't addressed your own stuff.  Bingo!!!!  I would encourage you to start counseling as soon as you can -- this will make you a better counselor for others and will give you great insight into your own "stuff" so you can manage it when you are in the helping field!  I know many programs require students to have gone through counseling (my program at Johns Hopkins does not, however, it was mentioned time and time again by instructors in various courses).  I personally know I could NOT help anyone else if I had not spent the five years in therapy that I did...that experience and the resulting outcome is actually what propelled me into seeking a master's in counseling.

As far as Type 2 Diabetes and violence, I can say that issue runs deep in my family as well.  As my husband (the scientist) will frequently remind me, "genes are a powerful indicator of chronic illness" and, knowing now that trauma is passed through the genes, I can unequivocally state that there are many with Type 2 Diabetes who are not obese but who have genetic factors (including ACEs in their family).  I'd love to hear more about that aspect of chronic illness (I have Rheumatoid Arthritis and Fibromyalgia, both of which have been connected to trauma and ACEs).  Pretty powerful connections if you ask me.

 

@Brenda Yuen, thank you so much for your message. I have been in therapy on and off for the past 20 years. I recently started back in the middle of last semester at my school. My program does not require counseling. I am interested in finding someone that does EMDR. The program has triggered a lot of my "stuff." 

I have a book on Fibromyalgia/trauma and EFT. I think thats right (EFT)

Now is a hard time for therapy, being a single mom, working, internship and classes. I wish I could win the lotto and be able to just go to school, do my internship this semester and focus on me without having to work. That would be an answered prayer. 

Monica, I can see that your plate is very full!  At Johns Hopkins, counseling services were offered free of charge (I don't know about your program, however).  I think it's very sad when money gets in the way of our health choices...you should have the support you need - even as a single mom (maybe ESPECIALLY as a single mom) to connect with the health programs you feel you might benefit from (and along the way, your children will benefit too)!

Good luck with the remainder of your program!  I remember just how hard it was for me (mom of two, but married with a supportive partner).  Keep in mind how important that MH counseling will be for YOU as you go out into the MH helping field!

Monica,  if at all possible, look for a Trauma Sensitive Yoga or Trauma Sensitive Exercise program in your community.  EFT works well if you find a good practitioner.  Once you learn the modality, you can continue the work on your own.  EMDR is definitely helpful and most medical insurances cover it.  Please continue to work counseling into your busy schedule.  Clients can trigger "stuff" even more so than the program and sometimes it will sneak up on you.  

Best of wishes as you continue your journey.  

If you can get Neurofeedback it can be incredibly helpful.  It helps your brain learn to regulate.  There is a very gentle non-directive type called Neuroptimal which just tells your brin when it's acting off kilter in its firing patterns but an audible click or skip in the music on your headphones.  Your right brain figures out what is causing the clicks (itself) and calms its own activity to get rid of the clicks.  Sounds hard to believe, but it works and it does so rapidly.  I have tried it after it helped a CASA youth of mine a great deal.  The best part is no efforting.  Your brain gets callmer while you listen to music and space out.  It puts a mute feature on your triggers.

thank you Lara, I was considering this a while ago, and I feel that what I am doing at this juncture with Sensorimotor Psychotherapy is enough. I think for me what I am having a challenging time grappling with is that my body/brain is still in the rewiring process and when I am feeling regulated and in the window, not hyper aroused or hypo aroused that the feeling is uncomfortable at times and hard to sustain. Noticing the old patterns at times being able to stop myself in the middle of lets say taking extra food. I don't deprive myself of anything letting go of that struggle, my brain and body are not used the consistency... it is the consistency that I at times get so frustrated with. and in sharing this I keep all of my appointments and work schedules/ it is in the regulated piece of it.. hard to imagine at times what my life would be like without this struggle internally. I may consider what you suggested as an addition.

warmly

sheri

 

Sensorimotor therapy is very powerful as well. 

I think, if neurofeedback works for you, the 'internal struggle' feeling resolves and goes away.  And what replaces it is an internal sense of okayness and calm.  My CASA youth could not imagine the interior state she achieved before achieving it-- it was unknown to her prior to treatment.  And she can barely remember the state of agitation she used to be in now that she is out of it. 

Sheri, Monica, Cissy, Diane, Brenda, and Laura -

This is a fabulous thread. Thank you all for what you have posted. This is part of the reason I love ACEs Connection so much: there is so much support, experience, strength, and hope here. We share from our hearts and our minds. 

EMDR was helpful for me in Trauma recovery and being retriggered in a failing marriage. I am hoping to experience neurofeedback soon. In the meantime, EFT, regular exercise, journaling, and staying checked in with supportive sponsors in a couple of 12-step programs have helped. While it may not be for everyone, 12-step offers free support and it is amazing to me the number of mental health professionals who join in as members seeking support. We are all the same; we all learn from each other. The list of 12–step groups is long! Al-Anon, Overeaters Anonymous, AA, Debtors Anonymous, Co-Dependents Anonymous, are among the many different offerings. The meeting times are varied. And these days (it’s been this way for many years now) one can find an online group and call in to meetings. That is truly anonymous! These groups may not be for everyone. You “take what you like and leave the rest.” But they do help people know they are not alone, which is key. And they are free, though a small donation is encouraged but not required. (People usually donate $1 for a meeting; one can send a check once a month or just donate at an in-person meeting, if possible. “You are more important than your money,” so groups never want a donation to prevent someone from coming.) Call-in meetings we’re a great option for this busy single mom, as I often “went to a meeting” while walking, folding laundry, or doing light housekeeping. I didn’t always/don’t always multi-task, but it is a great option in a pinch. And just hearing another person who has been in the “same place” talk about being in a better place now, and share how they got there, is supportive. Having a sense of belonging sometimes goes a long way in helping one make a shift. I believe it was good, too, that my children had the experience of knowing their mom was not afraid to ask for — and give — support.  Again, everyone is different. It is good to know there is a time-flexible and free, or low-cost, option. 

Peace! 

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