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Showing posts from 2016

~ Helen ~ Grateful for My Sister and for the Gift of Healing Together

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October 2015
“Hello. You’ve reached the Enchantment Resort and Spa.  How may I direct your call?”
“Yes, could you please connect me with Chi Ah Chi Restaurant?”
“It would be my pleasure. Please hold just a moment.”
As I waited for the transfer, my excitement grew thinking about the day of celebration being planned for my sister. I had carefully selected a perfect place – and as it states on their website, “A place curated exclusively for you.” What could be better? Strategically nestled among giant rock formations patterned with rings of chocolate lightly ensconced into the earth’s rich rust layers is one of Sedona’s most elegant places of indulgence – The Enchantment Resort and Spa. I wanted my sister’s 60th birthday to be special.  I wanted her to feel special. 
A warm inviting voice broke my momentary trance. “Good afternoon, Chi Ah Chi Restaurant. How may we help you?”
 “I would like to make a reservation, please, for brunch on Sunday, October 18th. There will be four people and…

Secrets: The Good, The Bad & The Unspoken

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Secrets.  Just the word sparks our interest. Why? Because something is being kept from us or we are concealing something from others.  Although the word "secret" feels light and airy, it carries with it a mysterious weightiness which only its holder can attest to. For today's blog, we are going to explore the anatomy of secrets - differentiating the good secrets from the bad, and more importantly, exposing the unspoken destructive characteristics which accompany a lengthy hibernation. Lastly, I'm going to encourage you to respond to a few writing prompts. Because secrets are uniquely personal and private, we often learn best from our own experiences.

The Good

Secrets, of course, can be good.  They can be fun! It's planning a surprise baby-shower for a friend; it's not telling the rest of the family about your plans to propose to your partner (so no one else will spoil it); it's making the effort to show up at a special event for your best friend after telli…

Collective Trauma: 3 Coping Tools for Families

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During the extremely difficult events of the past week, I found myself not wanting to turn on the TV, or view my Facebook page, or see what is trending on Twitter. Although I want to stay informed, I feel overwhelming sadness over the ongoing traumas which  are continually being replayed, re-tweeted, re-posted, etc. And with a cloud of anxiety hovering around me, I am wondering when the next tragedy is going to happen.

Cautiously surfing through the TV stations one evening, I stumbled on a calm rational news contributor who reported on the "collective trauma" we are all experiencing. She acknowledged that although the recent as well as past plethora of killings have become almost a "norm" in our society, familiarity doesn't diminish the emotional, psychological, and physical toll it is taking on adults, children, and our families in general.

Because I have worked extensively in  the areas of trauma, I would like to offer 3 coping tools for families. They are rea…

Protecting Our Youth Against Campus Sexual Assault: 3 Key Strategies

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Today's blog is for mature audiences: ages 18 and over.
Today's conversation is not an easy one to have, but it is critical.  What I am about to share may seem exaggerated and even fabricated.  Tragically, it is not. In the words of Susan Marine (Former Associate Dean of Student Life at Harvard University), "Sexual violence has always been part of the college experience". We know this to be an accurate statement from studies conducted on "campus violence at our universities and colleges" which date as far back as 1987 (CNN Films, The Hunting Ground).

Before I offer you 3 Key Strategies for Protecting Our Youth Against Campus Sexual Assault, it is important to understand that the recent case at Stanford University (in which an accomplished swimmer was convicted of sexual assault against a female student) is one of thousands which occur each year in the United States.Today, one out of four female college students will be a victim of rape or sexual assault. Ma…

Blindsided by the Betrayal Bandit? Understanding why it hurts so badly!

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Over the past several weeks, we have been talking about a very debilitating injury - betrayal. To gain a better understanding of betrayal and the recovering information we've covered, I encourage you to read the previous blogs before moving ahead: Blindsided by the Betrayal Bandit? (1) Hold on...help is on the way!! ; (2) What is behind the mask?(3) Feeling "Confused, Worthless and Powerless"? ; and (4) Free yourself from four painful traps!  Today, we will tackle our last blog in this series, but it is perhaps the most important one - understanding why injury from betrayal hurts so badly. 


When we can make sense of why we are feeling incredible pain,  or when we come to learn that there are sound explanations for the debilitating  states we find ourselves in, an inner level of comfort takes hold and our healing begins.


Let's examine two features of betrayal which explain why we hurt so badly. 
#1 Underlying principle of betrayal 
Each and every encounter with betraya…