Trauma Symptoms and the Brain
Emotional Abuse
Physical Abuse
Sexual Abuse

Which is not a trauma symptom: A) nightmares and difficulty sleeping, B) watching excessive amounts of TV or videogames, C) difficulty concentrating or staying focused, D) recurring upsetting memories

B! Watching excessive amount of TV or playing videogames is not a symptom of trauma


What does TF-CBT stand for?

Bonus: What does PTSD stand for?

Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Bonus: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder


What is emotional abuse?

Emotional abuse is when a person uses emotions to control and manipulate others. This involves words and actions and may occur with or without physical abuse.


How many children experience physical abuse each year?

150,000 children experience physical abuse each year. 1 in 4 children experience child abuse or neglect in their lifetime.


What are the different types of sexual abuse?

Sexual abuse can consist of: touching and non-touching

Touching includes touching a child’s genitals, making a child touch someone else’s genitals, playing sexual games, and/or putting objects or body parts inside the vulva or vagina, in the mouth, or in the anus of a child for sexual pleasure. 

Non-touching abuse includes showing pornography to a child, exposing a person’s genitals to a child, prostituting/trafficking a child, photographing a child in sexual poses, encouraging a child to watch or hear sexual acts either in person or on a video, and/or watching a child undress or use the bathroom.  


What is a trauma?


True/False: Confidentiality looks the same for TF-CBT as it does for any other therapy.

False! TF-CBT is a collaborative model that works with parents/caregivers and children, so it will involve sharing what is discussed with parents throughout the process within conjoint and parent sessions so caregivers are able to provide support and assist children with managing and reducing symptoms.


What are some examples of emotional abuse?

bullying, belitting, yelling, cursing, calling names, rejection, criticizing, humiliating, excessive demands on a child's performance.


What are some examples of physical abuse?

Physical abuse can look like hitting, slapping, punching, and kicking a child.

How many children yearly are victims of sexual abuse?

Over 65,000 children are sexually abused in the United States each year.


Complex trauma means:

A) taking an extended period of time to move past and talk about your trauma.

B) exposure to multiple trauma events or experiences

B! Complex trauma means that someone has experienced multiple traumas.

20% of all youth experience complex trauma.


True/False: It will only take about 12-20 sessions to complete the TF-CBT model.

True! TF-CBT takes from 12-20 sessions which is about 3-4 months to complete. However, you will begin to notice reduction in trauma symptoms before the end of treatment.


What % of kids experience a trauma by the age of 16?

25% of kids experience at least 1 trauma by the age of 16.


What is physical abuse?

Physical abuse is when an adult commits an act that results in physical injury to the child. This can look like red marks, swelling, bruises, burns.


Why do abusers/perpetrators engage in sexual abuse?

There are a range of reasons a person may sexually abuse a child, here are a few:

-desire/need for control or power

-previous history of sexual abuse towards them

-a want to be close to someone

-difficulties with managing their emotions

-an obsession with sex


True/False: Trauma changes the way the brain works.

True! When you experience a trauma the prefrontal cortex (reasoning, judgement and thinking part of the brain) shuts down and the amygdala (fear center) and brain stem activate to prepare your body for fight, flight, or freeze (survival mode).


Fill in the blanks: In TF-CBT, children will become the master of their _____, ______,  and _____ related to their trauma symptoms.

Thoughts, feelings, and symptoms.

Throughout TF-CBT, children will be taking back their power over their trauma experience.


What are the long term effects of emotional abuse on the child?

Children may have low self-esteem, anxiety, depression, difficulty trusting others, difficulty engaging in healthy and happy relationships.


How can you tell when someone is being physically abused? 

Bonus: How would they feel?

A child or person's behaviors would change and there may be physical signs of abuse.

Bonus: Children who are abused may have many feelings, there is not wrong answer. They may feel guilty, scared, anxious, sad, angry, confused, and most times children have many emotion at the same time.


True/False: Child sexual abuse only happens with strangers to the child.

False! 93% of perpetrators of sexual abuse are known to the victims. 59% being acquaintances to the family and 34% being family members themselves.


Can you show me the hand model of the brain?


Why is it important for caregivers to be involved in TF-CBT treatment?

It is important for caregivers to be involved in treatment because they will be learning how to support and assist child with managing their symptoms, thoughts and feelings. When caregivers are involved in treatment is helps to reduce feelings of self-blame, shame, and distorted thoughts with child.


Why does emotional abuse happen?

There are many reasons emotional abuse may happen some are: increased feelings of stress or overwhelmed, history of emotional or physical abuse, a need for control and power, inability to understand or attune to the needs of children due to developmental delays, drugs, or mental health issues.


What % of individuals who abuse children were their parents/caregiver?

76% of perpetrators were identified as the child's parent or caregiver.

62% of children in foster home were removed due to abusive neglect.


True/False: Children will never get over their trauma experiences.

False! Children may not forget their traumas but with treatment, children can go on to live healthy, happy, and normal lives.

Click to zoom