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Dear Trauma Momma,

April 26, 2013

Dear Trauma Momma,

You didn’t sign up for this. When you chose to parent a child who experienced trauma, you didn’t know it would result in you experiencing your OWN version of trauma. You didn’t know that when your child survived a horrific trauma and his physical body healed that his mind would be forever scarred by the impact of trauma.

You didn’t know how isolating this journey would be. Or that you’d have to relearn how to parent. That all your parenting instincts would be almost worthless. You didn’t know that no one would believe you. That your child would be loved by everyone else, and you’d get emails and school reports, and even THERAPIST reports that exclaimed about how wonderful your child is, how charming, and resilient- how much that person just enjoyed being with your child. You didn’t know that instead of beaming with pride that you would feel a frustrated, invalidated, alone, and even crazy. “Maybe my child IS wonderful and I’M the one with the big problem.”

You didn’t know how hard it would be to go out in public. Or have a date with your partner because your child cannot be left with a baby-sitter. You didn’t know how much money you’d spend on therapy, OT, books, medications, and trainings.

You didn’t know that when the flight attendants spoke to the passengers, and no one is even listening, that who they are REALLY speaking to is YOU, trauma momma. You, who really does need to “put on your own oxygen mask first before assisting others.” You didn’t know that parenting trauma is an invitation- no a DEMAND- to focus inward, love yourself, and heal yourself- because only after you put on your OWN oxygen mask can you assist others.


Like what you read here?  To get more trauma momma support, click here to sign up for my monthly newsletter!

Robyn Gobbel, LCSW is a child and family therapist in Austin, Texas specializing in adoption, trauma, and attachment counseling. She is the founder of the Central Texas Attachment & Trauma Center.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Kristin KMB permalink
    April 27, 2013 11:31 am

    Boy, this really speaks to me. I have been fortunate to garner a support network, thanks to the internet, my therapist, and some local trauma mamas. They do understand but what a lonely feeling until I found them. I just recently found your information, Robyn! I love getting the posts from you!

  2. April 27, 2013 7:23 pm

    Hi Kristin! Thank you so much! I’ve been overwhelmed and humbled by the response to this article. I wish it didn’t resonate with mommas so much, but also feel honored that the article is helping mommas feel heard, validated, and comforted. Thank you!

  3. Barbara G permalink
    April 28, 2013 7:23 am

    Thank you, Robyn. I posted this on my FB wall, because you’ve put in a few words what I try to explain to my friends who don’t understand trauma. I appreciate you.

    • April 28, 2013 11:14 am

      Hi Barbara, I’m so glad that it will be helpful to you, and I hope it brings some understanding to your ‘tribe.’

  4. Nikki Freyre permalink
    August 2, 2013 9:32 pm

    Wow! Someone else gets it. Someone understands! Thanks for blogging!

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