Unintended Trauma

At last year’s July 4th celebration, I was standing with some friends when someone lit one of those big long strings of little red firecrackers off right next to us. The guy next to me fell to his knees in utter panic, wide-eyed, glistening with sweat and pulled me down, too, as he fell.

It’s times like this that I’m so thankful to know how to help. Within 15 minutes of tapping with me – without his saying a word – he was on his feet, shaken but OK enough to be able to speak and do more tapping until he truly felt good.


I remember my dad doing the same thing on July 4th when we went to the beach to see the fireworks. My mother and I used to dread it because we knew what he’d do.

He’d be OK until the huge, no-lights boomy ones went off, and then he’d hit the ground, crashing onto his belly, taking anyone close enough to be within arm’s reach down with him. Shell shock, they used to call it. PTSD now.


So this year it happened again. I was at a friend’s whose neighbors like to build those doorway-sized archways that have the little red crackers strung in multiple strands from the bottom of one side across the top and down the other. Takes about 25 full minutes of incredibly loud po-po-pop-po-po-po-pop-popopopopopopopopopop-popping to be done with the darn thing.

“Sam” was across the lawn from me, but I saw him crash to his knees, ducking down and covering his ears and crying. I ran over and helped him up and into the house, where we did some quick work on his intense reaction. We had to neutralize not only his reaction, but his rage and shame that others saw him like that.

After only 20 minutes of very simple but very specific tapping, we were able to go outside and watch the very end of the popping. He had no reaction to it at all. I asked him if he could have done that before, and he said he’d have had to wait at least an hour for the initial shock to wear off, and then the shame and anger to subside.


There’s not one bit of shame in reacting like that. On the front lines of war, his body learned to react that quickly to get down and out of sight as a way of survival. It was serving him.

But now that he’s back home, the survival switch hasn’t turned back off, and loud sounds coming unexpectedly, or any number of other triggers, can make his body react to try to protect him. That switch needs to be turned off again! But how?

The hyper-vigilance needs to turn into calm, collected awareness. That’s what I help people do – turn painful reaction into calm response; turn charged, unwanted thoughts, memories and flashbacks into past incidents with no charge; help them finally express and let go of the internal rage and boiling hatred of how they’ve become, so peace can come into their bodies and they can feel at home again.


He said he felt life he was betraying his fallen friends by letting go of the pain. I hear that a lot. It’s a twisted way of keeping the spirit of the bond alive. I asked him if he would want any of his own friends to hold onto the fear, the pain, rage and shame for him if he’d been one of the fallen.

His eyes got all big, and he kind of gasped. “No,” he said, “no I wouldn’t. Holding onto the pain – with kind of a sick pride, it felt like –  isn’t honoring the best of us at all. It’s only perpetuating the pain. No one needs that. I’d rather they remembered me, not the pain. Our bond will never die.”


So who do you know who could use that kind of release? Please – send them to an EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) or TBT (Trauma Buster Tecnhnique) practitioner. There are literally thousand of us who are trained and qualified to help, just waiting to hear from you or your friends who need it.

Here are a few resources:

EFTinEveryHome.com (free demo)

This site you are on right now (freebies, books, audios and teleclasses)

TraumaBusterTechnique.com (books, audios and live workshops for individuals and certification for practitioners)

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