What is Post Traumatic Slave syndrome ?
Post Traumatic slave syndrome is characterized by the symptoms with the onset after an exposure to an major traumatic stressor. The individual is directly involved in the situation and exposed psychosomatically. Such individual is an active participant of major traumatic disorder.
It has been exposed to a serious traumatic event such as death or direct threat to the physical integrity of themselves or another person. In certain cases, even a knowledge in regard to a possible or violent death, serious harm or threat may endanger an individual’s health.
There is a developed theory in regards to the posttraumatic slave syndrome that encompases few centuries of slavery with the presence of racism and oppression. Such experience has resulted in the necessity to adapt in the terms of socially accepted behavior. (1)
Such disorder originates since the centuries of slavery and most commonly black individuals are affected. In the past, they have been active participants in the domestic, community and war slavery.
It was such a widespread and rooted form of slavery, mostly in African American descedents, with the active degradation of an individual’s personality, freedom and life.
Definition of a trauma consists of a program and organization that is related to traumatic experience. It should fully analyze the painful experience, it recognizes the most common signs and symptoms of the traumatic event.
Trauma is often rooted in childhood and/or adolescence occurring from unhealthy family systems. Many individuals experience and have difficulties moving on with their lives. Nightmares, flashabcks, gastrointestinal symptoms,insomnia and pain ache are present.
The onset of trauma is most commonly in the early childhood or puberty. It is present in an unhealthy family system. Such individuals are prone to symptoms such as nightmares, flashbacks, headaches and disturbed sleep period.
Signs & Symptoms
The most prominent symptoms in such individuals are cognitive impairment, depression,. hopelessness and an overall pessimistic perception of the surrounding world.
During time, there are developed suspicion, negative perception of others, violence, and destructiveness.
Gradually, an individual develops distorted feelings towards the others. The most common forms are racism, antipathy and social aversion. (1)
In the assessment of an approach to a traumatic experience in an individual it is necessary to establish certain level of safety, trust, collaboration, individualism, resilience, resolve any cultural, historical o gender misunderstandings.
In the further treatment it is necessary to provide possible strategies and empower an individual to be active participant of the healing process.
It is necessary to point out that deceased self-confidence and previous characteristic background may be the primary cause of this disorder.
The Umbrella Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome
Such group of syndrome is defined by the presence of posttraumatic disorder, chronic traumatic stress impairment, mental and physical acts and thoughts of suicide and homicide, economic burden, bihaviorual disorder, antisocialism, racial identity disorder lower selfesteem.
In these individuals, it is not recommended to impose the memory of an traumatic event. Thus, such avoidance is one of the most characteristic symptoms of posttraumatic slave disorder syndrome.
The most important aspect is to be fully acquainted with this practice and to try to make more flexibile their mental frame.
Post traumatic slave syndrome is a consequence of the previous slavery experience. In most cases it leads to an inhibition of mind, body and spiritual beliefs and actions. As a consequence, an individual is not educated enough, lives in bad conditions and eating pattern is disrupted.
It may cause various pathological conditions and diseases. Most importantly, it may cause an individual to perform the act of suicide due to hopeless state of mind.
Prevention may include the supplementation of certain vitamins such as B vitamin complex. It i necessary to avoid certain food that may contain compounds such as additives, pesticides, asthmatic allergens, fungicides etc. (2)
Trauma informed therapeutic approach means the healing of hurt via clear communication and mental stimulation. It is necessary to explain and define the terms such as discrimination, racism, oppression and poverty in order to eliminate potential introvertness and further complications.
In case such traumatic event is not analyzed, an individual may have an impaired everyday lifestyle. Their daily activities and social functioning may be severely disrupted. As a consequence, domestic violence, poverty, unemployment, injuries and lethal outcome may bi higher in such population.
Additional therapeutic measures are the introduction of the regular physical activity or diet, cognitive and mental enhancement in the form of reading and conversations. It is necessary to establish emotional connection with others through the practice of art, music, yoga, meditation and prayers.
In general, it is believed that the individuals with developed spiritual beliefs and practices are of better health. Consequently, the heal faster than the others and have longer life.
It is necessary for the environment such as communities and coworkers or relatives to be acquainted with the previous traumatic experience of the individual.
Such or professional healthcare specialist must be trained in the corresponding field. The most prominent case would be a black individual that has experienced psychological trauma due to racism or other violent behavior.
It is necessary to empower affected individuals to be opened and direct in regards to the personal traumatic disorder. They should be as well honest to the immediate family and relatives, as well as the local church.
An individual with the posttraumatic slave syndrome should be stimulated to debate and elaborate certain experiences and to allow an open expression of their anger or internal depressed emotions.
There is a developed theory in regards to the posttraumatic slave syndrome that encompases few centuries of slavery with the presence of racism and oppression.
Such experience has resulted in the necessity to adapt in the terms of socially accepted behavior.
It is important that an individual is able to use its own knowledge and gather information in order to achieve appropriate mental health. In such state, an individual is able to process and understand the environment more precisely and to overcome existing obstacles.
- Hicks, Shari Renee. A critical analysis of post traumatic slave syndrome: A multigenerational legacy of slavery. Psy.D., California Institute of Integral Studies, 2015, 254; 3712420
- Degruy Leary.Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome: America’s Legacy of Enduring Injury and Healing, Joy Uptone Press (2005).