Vicarious trauma happens when we accumulate and carry the stories of trauma including images, sounds, and resonant details we have heard, which then come to inform our worldview.

The indicators of vicarious trauma can be categorised into emotional, behavioural, cognitive, and physical or physiological signs and symptoms. As a social species, human beings are social biologically connected to each other. Witnessing another person’s suffering is so traumatic that torturers frequently force their victim to observe the torture of another in order to elicit information.

The symptoms can appear much like those of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), but also encompass changes in frame of reference, identity, sense of safety, ability to trust, self-esteem, intimacy, and a sense of control.

In our latest episode Jake discusses the effects of Vicarious Trauma.

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