TRAUMA THERAPY

The effects of trauma can ripple through every aspect of your life

TRAUMA WITH DR. BEN CULHANE | PSY.D.

We don’t always see what’s under the surface.

If you’re ready to FEEL differently about your past and move forward in your life, give me a call.

Are you struggling to keep memories of people physically or emotionally hurting you from surfacing? Is abuse from childhood impacting how you feel? Or perhaps growing up with a verbally abusive parent has left you doubting your abilities and struggling with self-confidence as an adult. Is there a part of you that finds it difficult to trust others? Were you sexually abused in ways that still affect or disturb you? 

It takes immense strength to confront the memories of child abuse or neglect that have shaped your life. Do you find yourself haunted by nightmares that stem from a single event that forever altered your being? 

The effects of trauma can ripple through every aspect of your life. Emotionally, you may be plagued by anxiety, depression, PTSD, anger, or shame. Physically, your body may bear the tension of a protective shield, or you may resort to self-harm as a way to cope. And on a relational level, the trauma may have left you hesitant to form deep connections, causing you to repeat dysfunctional relationship patterns or fear intimacy with others.

It’s possible that even the smallest triggers—a familiar smell at the office, a certain expression on a person’s face, or a specific tone of voice—can transport you back to a time when your innocence was violated through sexual abuse. Perhaps a random interaction in the world has brought back painful memories of being bullied in high school. Or maybe you’ve had enough of being a victim of domestic violence and have decided to break free from the cycle of abuse.

If you’re ready to finally come to terms with the trauma in your life, then you’ve come to the right place. You didn’t ask to experience this trauma, but the fact that you’re seeking professional help shows the incredible strength and resilience within you. Through trauma therapy, you can begin the transformative process of turning your traumatic experiences and their effects into a source of self-empowerment.

Trauma is like an unofficial club that many of us never wanted to join. It’s defined as a profoundly distressing event, which can stem from a single incident or multiple experiences over time. Examples of trauma range from emotional, sexual, and physical child abuse to rape, sexual assault, bullying, domestic abuse, neglect, discrimination, and even the horrors of war.

Trauma has a way of rewiring our brains and deactivating our thinking and emotion centers while amplifying fear. These effects often lead to a sense of isolation, as the desire to connect with others becomes tangled in the aftermath of trauma. What’s astonishing is that in the United States alone, about 70% of adults have experienced some form of trauma in their lives. It’s a shared experience, yet one that can make us feel alone.

While further research is needed to fully understand the gendered differences in trauma, it is known that women are diagnosed with PTSD twice as often as men. However, it’s important to consider whether fewer men seek help due to societal gender expectations, as acknowledging trauma and seeking support may seem to go against the unwritten rules of masculinity.

Different genders also encounter diverse types of trauma. Women tend to report more incidents of sexual assault and abuse, while men often experience trauma through military combat or natural and man-made disasters. These gendered realities can add another layer of complexity to the feelings of isolation that trauma survivors face.

But despite these differences, most of us find ourselves as members of this unofficial club. And we can all benefit from trauma counseling, regardless of gender or how our trauma manifests itself. The present time is particularly sensitive due to the increased risk of trauma caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. With partners and families spending more time in close proximity, there has been a rise in intimate partner violence and child abuse.

While our experiences with trauma may be unique, what binds us together as members of this club is the strength we’ve cultivated to face each day, both personally and professionally. Whether the impact of your trauma stems from a single incident or multiple experiences, it’s crucial to recognize how trauma infiltrates not just our memories, but also our relationships with others, our sense of self, and our approach to various aspects of life.

You know, it’s common to think that trauma will magically disappear on its own, like poof! But the truth is, healing from trauma requires more than just wishful thinking or positive affirmations on your bathroom mirror. While time may dull the pain and repression can offer temporary relief, the deep psychological impact of trauma needs to be addressed in a way that allows you to truly connect with your emotional self.

As a therapist, I’ve had the privilege of witnessing the transformative power of trauma therapy firsthand. It’s incredible to see my clients shift from mere survivors to individuals who truly thrive. And it all starts with creating a safe and supportive environment where you can freely share your story.

Trauma therapy not only helps you heal from your trauma, but it also offers the opportunity to build a new foundation for your life—one rooted in trust, authenticity, and love. In our sessions, we’ll work together to understand how your trauma symptoms are impacting your day-to-day life. We’ll also delve into and identify the root causes of your trauma and explore the coping mechanisms you currently rely on.

I offer a solutions-based approach that is tailored to your unique experiences. Whether your trauma stems from emotional child abuse, neglect, or psychological abuse, or if it involves childhood sexual abuse, we’ll tailor the therapeutic journey to fit your specific needs.

Treatment may involve one or a combination of scientifically validated tools. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), mindfulness, somatic experiencing, and eye-movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) are just a few examples. Mindfulness and somatic movement can help release stored trauma from your body, while EMDR focuses on reprocessing distressing experiences that were never fully processed by the brain.

It’s understandable to want to heal on your own, to summon the superhuman strength necessary to cross the finish line of recovery. But as humans, we all need support along the way. Choosing to work with a trauma specialist is an act of vulnerability that transforms into personal power. Simply taking that first step, admitting that you have a problem, and recognizing the need for help, is a remarkable feat. You don’t have to face this journey alone—you deserve a compassionate guide by your side as you navigate the path to healing.

Each person’s recovery journey is unique and personal. It won’t look like anyone else’s, because your story is yours alone. Two survivors of mental abuse, for instance, can have completely different paths to recovery and healing.

But here’s the beautiful part: with commitment from both of us, your recovery is possible. The ultimate goal is for you to coexist with your past, allowing the memories of your trauma to become just a small part of your overall story. Together, we’ll build a new life through therapy—one that empowers you to thrive, despite the pain you’ve endured. The road to healing is within your reach, and I’ll be right here to guide you every step of the way. Near the end of therapy, clients continually tell me that if I told them how good they would feel at the end of this, they never would have believed me. They do now; they are living proof! If you are unsure about whether you have trauma, you can take this quick quiz. Results will be sent directly to your email. 


You May Still Have Concerns or Questions About Trauma Therapy

“I’m worried about sharing the things that have happened to me. “

I completely understand your worries and hesitations about sharing the deeply painful experiences that have shaped your life. Opening up about past trauma can feel incredibly vulnerable. It’s like standing on the edge of a cliff, unsure of what will happen if you take that leap and reveal your darkest secrets. You’re not alone in this shame. 

Let me assure you, though, that embarking on the journey of trauma therapy is a courageous and empowering step toward healing. When you’re ready to share, remember that your therapist is there to listen, support, and guide you. I won’t judge you or minimize your pain. You deserve healing!

“I’m afraid that all the feelings will overwhelm me, and I’ll lose control.” 

I hear you, and I want you to know that your concern about feeling overwhelmed and losing control is not uncommon. It’s completely natural to feel apprehensive about delving into the depths of your emotions. After all, trauma is deeply personal and can bring up intense feelings that may seem overwhelming at times.

Here’s the thing: My specialized training and experience have helped individuals navigate through the emotional turbulence that trauma can bring. You’ll be guided in finding healthy ways to process and regulate your emotions, ensuring that you don’t feel swept away by them. Remember, therapy is not about reliving the trauma in its entirety all at once. Instead, it’s a journey of healing and self-discovery. Together with your therapist, you will navigate the complexities of your emotions, ensuring that you feel supported and in control every step of the way. If at any point during therapy you feel overwhelmed, remember that it’s okay to communicate this. We can adjust the pace, provide additional support, or offer additional coping strategies. Together, we’ll find the strategies that work best for you, allowing you to navigate through your healing journey with strength, grace, and control.

“How Long Will This Take?”

Trauma therapy is a unique journey, and the time it takes to heal varies for each person. Factors like practicing therapy skills, personal beliefs, resilience, support system, and pre-existing mental health can affect the duration. While you can’t control how fast your mind heals, you can focus on your healing journey. Committing to therapy, actively participating, and applying the skills learned will empower you to make progress. Remember, therapy is not only about recovery but also about developing tools for navigating life. Be patient, trust the process, and embrace each step forward. Your healing timeline is as unique as you are

If past thoughts or unpleasant memories are taking over your life, Trauma Therapy might be just right for you.

Trauma comes to us in many shapes and sizes.


After all…we are human.

Trauma might stem from a single event (like a car accident), leaving you feeling uneasy about the event (driving, in this case). Experiences like an affair can be extremely traumatic in our lives. The event may create mildly to extremely disturbing thoughts or feelings connected to the place, person, or thing associated with that happened. It might be caused by multiple episodes (repeated similar events) that create fear related to the event, a place or a person. Trauma might be complex (repeated and multiple episodes) and has cut us so deeply that we feel triggered when anything or anyone even comes close to the wound.

“I respect all people, value diversity, and am committed to treating my patients with tenderness and compassion at all times.”