I’m still flying high and committed to 30 days of posts about developmental trauma from ACEs. However, it is time for some digital diversity and the brilliant and varied voices of ACEs experts.
These talks are all available online, for free, and can be understood whether one has a Ph.D. or PTSD – or both. Personally, I need to hear a lot of different people talking about the same subject before I can absorb and retain the content. All of this viewing and listening has informed me. I have watched some of these dozens of times.
I find this information validating, motivating, shocking and kind of common sense as well – all at the same time. However, I’ve heard some find this information to be depressing, hard to listen to or accept.
Please know there are some links to resources below to further support your living, loving, parenting, and processing. Each of these experts has books, articles, websites, or businesses built around sharing ACEs science and research.
Persuasive Pediatrician: TedTalk: Dr. Nadine Burke Harris
Go to the Source: Co-Principals of the ACE Study: Dr. Vincent Felitti / Kaiser Permanente
Dr. Robert Anda / Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) & ACE Interface
Dr. Survivor: Why ACEs Matter with Allison Jackson
“What if the largest public health discovery of our time, and maybe all time, was about the smallest of us?” Laura Porter on Neurobiology
Science Writer Talking Parenting & Healing from ACEs: Donna Jackson Nakazawa
Donna Jackson Nakazawa’s book Childhood Disrupted includes sections on parenting and healing as well as in-depth research about the ACEs study. If, like me, you are obsessed with research about ACEs and who is doing what and where with what Jane Stevens has coined ACEs Science, you want to go to ACEs Too High, the all-things-ACEs journalism site or join ACEs Connection (like Facebook for ACEs).
I work for ACEs Connection. I have written for ACEs Too High. I continue to blog, speak, and write about ACEs because it inspires personal, parenting and system-wide social change that all of us need to be a part of. This is information parents, trauma survivors, and others are entitled to.
We deserve the raw data, research and to hear from all kinds of experts - including each other. Too often, this content is made inaccessible. Too often these topics are discussed in clinical contexts or professional settings - as though it’s not stuff that impacts all of us in all parts of our life. YouTube and Ted Talks have helped changed that. Now, those of us who are living, breathing and dealing with past or present traumatic stress in our daily lives can hear directly from others all over the world.
What we do with this information, once we have it, is entirely individual.
Maybe we’ll take the ACE quiz or share our ACE scores with loved ones. Maybe we'll bring it to appointments with medical providers or we will decide HELL NO and keep it private because we know... they can't even....
Maybe we don't trust providers enough to share our health and social history until we've developed trust in them or the larger system which employs them. There are reasons for caution. The system has often minimized, misunderstood, silenced and re-traumatized survivors.
That doesn't mean we can't use all of this knowledge. Maybe we’ll be inspired to do social change work or just eat better and go to the doctor more often. I know I've been changed for the better.
Maybe we'll get a crash course in systems change once free of the myth that we are just damaged and broken.
Maybe we'll learn to see how social justice issues become social determinants of health - which, for some of us, is shocking. And we'll understand that community trauma, structural and historical oppression are central to all conversations about ACEs and trauma.
We can bring that work into our hearts, homes, families and communities.
I know we can all learn more about parenting and that no one has more power than parents to impact children.
We can also make it a social problem we address together, not just a personal one we "fix" in our families. We can help make it so that all kids can have the low-ACE advantage and live happier, healthier and longer – who doesn’t want for that???
Our individual impact, parent to parent, is unparalleled and having this public health knowledge in our hearts, minds, brains and families is change-the-world stuff.
Let’s keep the conversation going even after Oprah.
Note: This blog post is cross-posted to www.healwritenow.com