Category Archives: Nervous System

“What do I do with my anger and rage?”

In our culture, we’re taught to not be angry, to calm down, and to “overcome” our anger, the emotion that alerts us to violations. Cruelty and contempt from caregivers is a serious violation. It’s no wonder survivors of severe abuse … Continue reading

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Physician empathy is a powerful healthcare intervention

As a trauma survivor who has studied Interpersonal Neurobiology (IPNB) for five years, I have learned that empathy is vital to human well-being, especially after trauma, and that, neurophysiologically, I need empathy. It helps integrate the brain, which helps the … Continue reading

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The “Patel Pause”: building capacity for trust after trauma

A brief, simple protocol of granting and withdrawing consent can help restore patient trust after medical or other trauma. An increased sense of safety and agency in your practice will help traumatized patients return instead of postponing care. The Patel … Continue reading

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Alienated from shadows, butterflies, and waving ferns

  This feels strange. I’m still not used to living with so many windows. My nervous system is not yet familiar enough with the world outside them to be fully comfortable. For instance, I frequently turn expecting a threat at … Continue reading

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The half-brother I’ll never meet

Today is my half-brother’s birthday. When I was a teenager my mother told me to commit to memory her first child’s birth date, hospital name, city, and state. I recited them to myself again and again and throughout my life, … Continue reading

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No shame in survival responses!

No shame in survival responses! Every living organism is naturally and normally oriented toward safety, integration/wholeness, and well-being. From an Interpersonal Neurobiology (IPNB) lens, the “something preventing that from happening” is never the organism, but impediments created by the environment. … Continue reading

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The courage it takes to speak up against sexualized violence

I often hear that I am courageous for speaking my truth about sexualized violence in my life and its prevalence in America. Yeah, I know. But what is this courage really about? I’m not courageous because I speak my truth. … Continue reading

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The importance of decisive action

Sometimes I’m frustrated that my body needs every freaking thing in little bits! Evidently I’ve overused my hands and wrists messing with clay. And I’m driven to make one more niche. But my body says stop. So I need to … Continue reading

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How to save your own life

How to save your own life when the medical system is designed to kill you*: First, you get really pissed off. You must be determined to keep looking for new avenues and pick whatever seems the most sensible from where … Continue reading

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In an actual HEALTH CARE system…..

My symptom log shows I’m more than ready for SGB #13. I hope the next two nights aren’t as bad as the past two. This gets old really fast. I need the shot with pulsed Radio Frequency Ablation (pRFA), which … Continue reading

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