A Portrait of Trauma

Dear Wellness Readers:

Trauma comes in all shapes and sizes and no one is immune from experiencing the life-changing effects trauma causes – even for the President of the United States. According to Dr. Lance Dodes, retired Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, “[Donald] Trump became the same sadistic tyrannical and cruel person his father was.” Does early childhood trauma give Trump an excuse for being a psychopath (a term that is now interchangeable with sociopath)? There is no simple answer to this question.

Mary Stout, author of the book, The Sociopath Next Door, says “Imagine – if you can – not having a conscience, none at all, no feelings of guilt or remorse no matter what you do, no limiting sense of concern for the well-being of strangers, friends, or even family members. Imagine no struggles with shame, not a single one in your whole life, no matter what kind of selfish, lazy, harmful, or immoral action you had taken…”

Trump is the son of an abusive father and a neglectful mother contributing to living his life “…driven by an insatiable narcissistic hunger to be loved, accepted, admired, praised … and the need to dominate.” Other than dominate, don’t we all need and want these same things? We do but usually not at the expense of others.

Trump takes no responsibility for the current 3.68 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 141,000 deaths in the U.S. Since sociopaths have no feelings of empathy, Trump revels in attention, domination, and cruelty. I believe this is one of the worst results of childhood trauma. Since Trump thinks he is an expert on everything, there will be no moment of enlightenment to change his behaviors. To heal from trauma we are required to go deep inside our minds, bodies, and spirits to create a life with new morals, beliefs, and values. I doubt Trump will ever do this.

So how do we treat a traumatized and psychopathic U.S. president? We must repeatedly push back at Trump, calmly and persistently.

Never give up …

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