Online Trauma Therapy &
EMDR Counseling for Women in Florida

Does it feel difficult to let down your guard and let others in?

No two reactions to a traumatic event are the same. Maybe it shows up more subtly for you, like a pit in your stomach or a sense that something is wrong even when things seem to be going right. Maybe it’s more obvious, like you feel a sudden sense of panic, feeling like you’re always on alert, or just wanting to be alone because it feels safe.

After experiencing a traumatic event or series of traumatic events, our brains do an amazing job to protect us and keep us safe by setting off alarms in the body to respond and react to danger. However, when that danger is chronic and/or repeated, the alarm stays on and the body remains on high alert and in a hypervigilant state. Over time, a person’s view of the world may change and they may lose their sense of safety. So while this system has kept you safe and surviving, you may be noticing that the symptoms and effects are no longer working for you. Trauma therapy can help.

How is trauma showing up for you? At work: do you notice difficulty with memory, focus, or with concentration? With relationships: does it feel unsafe to be close with others or do you prefer to detach, withdraw, avoid, or isolate? In your overall well-being or functioning: Do you feel exhausted, panicked, sad, anxious or numb? Do you have difficulty sleeping, experience flashbacks, nightmares, or intense feelings of guilt or shame? Do you notice physical symptoms such as chronic pain, dizziness, headaches, or stomach aches? Trauma therapy can help you address these issues and regain a sense of safety and well-being.

You don’t have to feel alone.

Trauma Therapy Can Help You

It’s exhausting to carry this all on your own, wanting to move forward and heal but not sure how to get there.

You want to feel safe and grounded, able to reconnect to yourself and others, and feel more at peace with being you. You want more than just coping skills to work through the pain, you also want a space to heal and grow.

Together we will work on...

Trauma therapy in Florida and Connecticut

Feeling Safe and Grounded

Having an intense reaction to a trigger can feel like it came out of nowhere. Trauma Therapy can help you learn to identify emotional and physical triggers so that you feel more prepared to cope with them when they arise. You’ll develop new skills and resources to help you feel safe, secure, and grounded.

Online Anxiety counseling and therapy in Florida and Connecticut

Healing Past Experiences

Trauma often feels like there is something “wrong” with you, however, the question should be “what happened to you?”. Together, we will explore how events from your past show up in your present. You will learn about your symptoms of trauma and where they are showing up for you. Together we will create a safe space to do the difficult work of processing the events from the past so that you can feel live more in present and stop feeling stuck.
Online Anxiety counseling and therapy in Florida and Connecticut

Reconnecting to Yourself

You are a survivor. You have done amazing work to keep yourself safe surviving, but that may have come at a cost. Maybe you felt invalidated or you weren’t believed. Maybe the people who were supposed to protect you were the ones who hurt you. You will learn about healthy boundaries and creating a sense of safety in the relationships you have and the ones you want.

It’s possible to feel safe and connected in yourself and your relationships.

Frequently Asked Questions about Trauma Therapy

A: It’s normal to feel nervous about doing this work. As humans, we tend to avoid the things that make us feel sad, pain, or uncomfortable. As your counselor, I am here to support and encourage you. I am a passenger on your journey and you are the driver.  You are empowered to take the roads that feel right for you at the speed you want to go. Highways aren’t always the best ways. I love scenic drives and don’t mind detours!

A: Counseling is a very personalized process and looks different for everyone. For some, they may feel they have met their goals after a few months. For others, this may take longer. The amount of time depends on a person’s history and goals they are looking to work on in counseling. As your counselor, I value transparency and will collaborate with you to develop and update goals so you feel empowered with the decision to continue the work.

A: While we can’t undo the past, healing from trauma is possible. Trauma counseling can help you feel more safe, present, and free from the symptoms of trauma.

Specializing in Trauma and Complex Trauma

Most of us have experienced a distressing event in our lives. There may be memories you wish to forget but still tug at your heartstrings (like a bad breakup) or cause you to lay awake anxious thinking about. For many people, they can identify a single event or experience that caused significant distress such as a car accident or falling in the crowded cafeteria in middle school. Single incidents such as these are called acute traumas. 

Acute traumas are significant events that overwhelm our ability to cope in the moment and cause that “fight, flight, or freeze response”. However, once that event has subsided, our body is usually able to return to a “normal state”. You might still feel some carry over effects such as nervousness or embarrassment, but overall you are able to carry on and regain functioning.

Chronic and complex trauma have a more lasting impact on the individual. While acute trauma is a single incident, chronic trauma occurs over a prolonged period of time. Prolonged childhood abuse, domestic violence, prolonged exposure to war/combat, community violence, and chronic illnesses are some examples of chronic trauma.

Complex trauma is similar to chronic trauma as it occurs over a prolonged period of time and also includes exposure to multiple traumatic events. It is often severe and interpersonal in nature. In addition to the examples mentioned, complex trauma may also include human trafficking, sexual abuse or incest, childhood neglect or abandonment, and torture. 

Unlike with acute trauma, chronic and complex trauma disrupts the person’s ability to “return to normal”. This makes sense considering the prolonged exposure, the body isn’t able to return to a normal state and often stays in heightened state of arousal. This arousal is a protective function, it is our body’s way of keeping us safe and prepared to handle danger. While this is a built-in survival mechanism, over time, this heightened state becomes a new normal keeping the person hyper focused or alert, constantly scanning the environment for danger. It can also negatively affect a person’s thoughts, behaviors, and relationships. 

Other effects of complex trauma may show up as difficulty with or lapses in memory, sleep disturbances, flashbacks, or nightmares, dissociation, derealization or depersonalization, difficulty regulating emotions, hypervigilance, low self-esteem, avoiding people, places, and things that remind the person of a traumatic event, difficulty with relationships, body aches, lowered immune system, and chronic health conditions. There is also a strong link between complex trauma and substance use as a way of coping. 

While trauma and its symptoms can be difficult and overwhelming, the good news is that it can be treated. If you have experienced trauma or recognize some of the symptoms, you are not alone.

Heal trauma and complex trauma using EMDR

Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is an evidence-based intervention commonly used to treat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and is also effective in treating other mental health concerns including but not limited to anxiety, depression, trauma and other stress-related disorders.

In EMDR Trauma Therapy, the clinician asks the client to focus on a memory while attending to bilateral stimulation. The dual attention of focusing on the memory and the bilateral stimulation reduces the level of distress associated with the memory, increases adaptive beliefs, and allows the brain and body to heal.

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Now Accepting New Clients!
I specialize in working with women with a history of trauma who are struggling with anxiety and self-esteem to stop feeling empty and self-critical and to feel more confident, calm, and connected with themselves and their relationships.

Infinite Potential Counseling & Consultation, LLC. 
Shara Goudreau, Ph.D, LMHC-QS (MH12932), NCC, CCMHC
5550 Glades Road Suite 500 #1053, Boca Raton, FL 33431
561-247-3734 | sgoudreau@infinitepotentialawaits.com

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