The Shattered Experience: Trauma Memories

By Alexandria Hayes, MA, LPC, NCC Why is it that, when someone experiences post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), they keep reliving the traumatic incident? The answer is complex, but there is a simple way to understand it using the metaphor of a book in a library. When we are faced with a threatening situation, our autonomic nervous system (ANS) jumps to our defense, sending out a cascade of neurochemicals designed to ignite life-saving behaviors (see a more comprehensive explanation of...
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Where are You on the Trauma Map?

By Alexandria Hayes, MA, LPC, NCC What happens in your body when you are faced with a threat? And, more importantly, what happens afterwards? The Trauma Map, first developed by Peter Levine and modified by Eric Wolterstorff at Trauma Dynamics, can help explain the process. In this model, there are five stages of experience, 0-4. These stages represent the reactions of a threat response system, the autonomic nervous system (ANS), headquartered in the most primitive part of the brain of all ma...
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Are You Addicted?

Or is There Another Problem...? By Alexandria Hayes, MA, LPC, NCC Do you worry that you have a problem with an addiction? Drink too much? Smoke pot every day? Unable to bypass the exit to Blackhawk? Spend your whole vacation in the gift shop? Even if the answer is yes to any of these questions, does that mean you're addicted? Find Out Where You Stand Here's a simple test you can take to see whether you're addicted, or just overdoing it: Does the behavior improve your mood, make y...
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Seeking Safety Group for Women with PTSD and Addiction

Alex Hayes, MA, LPCC, NCC
Join us... ...for a 10-week exploration of the interconnected nature of trauma and addiction. Seeking Safety is a well-researched group protocol for those who have both PTSD symptoms and addiction issues. Beyond a better understanding of what you are experiencing, you will develop skills and resources that help you manage PTSD symptoms, including depression and anxiety. The Seeking Safety group for Women is facilitated by two trauma and addiction specialists, Jennifer Carter, MA, LPC, LAC an...
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