Storytelling Helps Victims of Trauma
Bradenton Herald (Bradenton, FL)
August 21, 2004
Stories of people losing everything they own and others losing their lives in Florida filled our airwaves.
What do we say to those who have suffered through shock and tragedy? No words can really comfort in these situations. What matters is not what we say, but that we listen or help someone sort through the debris. Our helping hands, listening hearts and comforting arms can speak volumes during times like this.
What Floridians are going through right now does not end when the mess is cleaned up. The shock and loss will live within them for years and will roar every time a hurricane is predicted in their area. Post traumatic stress does not just disappear. It lingers in the recesses of our hearts and minds resurrected with a vengeance when circumstances similar to their trauma occur or most anytime at all.
What does help victims of trauma is storytelling. One of the greatest benefits of psychotherapy is the opportunity for a client to tell his or her story to someone who is not only reaching out, but who is not judging in any way. The client feels unconditional acceptance in a safe place. That is how we can help those around us who have gone through the shock and terror of a hurricane or who have lost a child or other loved one through death. Listen to them!
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