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Trauma Therapy in Farmington, CT

Symptoms of Trauma 

close up of teary-eyed woman

Are you frustrated with feeling that you can't seem to move past your past?

Did you decide a long time ago that you would just not think about certain things that upset you, even if they seem to keep popping up?

Is there some new stress that seems to have brought old, complicated feelings back to the surface?


Do you ever think to yourself, "Why can’t I just get over it!?"


Perhaps you have chunks of time in your past you don’t remember well or at all. Maybe you suspect something bad has happened in your life, but you can’t quite identify all of what it could be? 


If any of this sounds familiar, take a minute here to breathe… that’s right — in through the nose and out through the mouth. Just pause for a minute and know that you're okay for this one moment. Being here right now and reading this page may cause you to feel stressed or emotional in some way. I know, it’s hard. I also know you want to be here. So go slow. Take your time. Continue to read on or come back to this page when you feel ready. I’ll still be here.

Sometimes anxiety and depression are the resulting feelings of a history of trauma and stress. Some of us have had some bad experiences in our past that cause us to feel ashamed, unnerved, and as though we need to keep our experiences secret from others. These memories can come back up in our minds in the form of disturbing recollections of images, thoughts, and conversations — repeatedly, over time.

Dr. Robert Scaer, a leader in the field of trauma research, defines trauma as: "Any negative life event that occurs in a position of relative helplessness." He also speaks of the feelings of being terribly alone that can occur during and after a traumatic experience. It's not just the event, but the experiences after that impact us. 

Types of Trauma

Trauma and stress can range in the severity of how they affect your life. Maybe something specific triggers you toward a downward spiral, but you usually can regroup. Or it could be that your self-esteem and relationships regularly suffer

(if you have any of either, at all). Sometimes, your emotions are all over the place or the opposite — you feel mostly numb. These are just some of the issues trauma-informed therapy look at.


Put simply, sometimes we have little "t" trauma that may stem from:


  • Bad divorce or breakup

  • The loss of a pet

  • Dealing with bullying or emotional abuse

  • Struggling to recover from injuries or illnesses that have altered your life

  • Witnessing an accident or other tragedy

Other times, we have a big "T" trauma that may have been caused by: 

  • A violent experience

  • Devastating damage resulting from a natural disaster

  • Sexual abuse or assault or witnessing these things

  • Being involved in a serious accident

  • Neglect or abandonment issues from childhood


Regardless of the cause, trauma and extreme stress change our brains and subsequently puts our mental, physical, and emotional well-being in a state of chaos. Sometimes it’s subtle. You get used to living in a constant state of alert, defensiveness, or irritability. Other times, it can be torturous trying to understand and process what you've been through or how to heal from it — even though you know things could be better. Seeking help from an experienced trauma therapist can make all the difference for you.

TAKE THE ACES QUIZ to assess your trauma


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Don't Allow Your Trauma to Define You Any Longer

Why get help?

Negative feelings, behaviors, and the traumatic experiences that caused them can only be pushed down for so long. Eventually, they'll begin to act like a poison until they are healed. Your well-being, relationships, and ability to do life in any functional way will take its toll.


To live your fullest life, you must start to process what happened to you. This may sound scary but think of it as empowering. While seemingly impossible on your own, when you reach out for help, it is possible to heal from past events, feel better, and live more positively in the present.

Choose J Hoffman Therapy | Trauma Therapy Services in Farmington, CT

I can help you retrain your brain to make old memories and current situations less triggering and your reactions to them less devastating. At J Hoffman Therapy, I'll listen carefully to your stories and the negative beliefs you have stuck on a loop. I can help you get to the root of what impacts how you feel and behave. Whether it's from the past or the present, I can help you train your nervous system to feel calmer more often and for longer periods of time.

I'm afraid if I talk about it, I'll relive it.

For some people, once they recognize they have trauma, are in a rush to get it "fixed." Others recognize the desire to heal, but are afraid of what will happen if they open it all up again. With trauma therapy, slow is faster. That means a skilled clinician, like me, will help set the pace and be attuned to the many complexities of each individual's story and need for emotional safety. 

You don't have to tell your story in detail to heal, either. Using EMDR for trauma therapy, I only need a key word, feeling or body sensation as a hint for what I need to do next to facilitate the process. 

With 18 years of trauma-informed experience, I have many ways to help you build your resilience, regulate your nervous system and reprocess negative experiences without overwhelming you. 

I'm afraid this will be hard!

man with gripping hands on forehead seemingly in emotional  pain

Therapy IS Hard.

But hasn't living the way you have been hard too? 

Sometimes, we have to choose our hard.

The good news is I've helped hundreds of people go through the hard and emerge on the other side feeling lighter, happier, and hopeful. 

I value the connections I build with each client and believe the healing begins with feeling comfortable with me. Being seen and heard is what helps the healing continue and the hard eases. Having a space to practice different ways of being who you envision benefits you, too. As an experienced therapist, I will help you with the best combined approach for your unique needs to help you move forward.

We can do hard things. 

Healing your past can be scary, addressing current triggers and moving forward can be too, but when you have support on your side — your best life is within reach. Contact me today!

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