As a trauma therapist in Oakland, CA, I get this question a lot: did I really experience trauma? Trauma is an emotional and physical response to a major stressor (or series of stressors), typically where one feels powerless.
Something stressful, annoying, sad, scary, and even triggering is not traumatizing *unless* there are lasting psychological and/or psychobiological impacts. It is important to distinguish so people with trauma get the care they need. Don't get me wrong--when things suck, that matters, too, but you may need a different level of care, processing, and treatment.
According to Dr. Gabor Mate, it is not trauma if:
Looking from a trauma therapist in Oakland, CA? Learn more here.
Looking for a queer couples therapist in Oakland, CA? Learn more here.
What is trauma, really?
***Resources are not a substitute for therapy and are not intended for making diagnoses or providing treatment. Not all practices and tools are suitable for every person. Please discuss exercises, practices, and tools with your individual therapist or health care provider.