Have you ever heard of Historical Trauma? Historical trauma refers to the cumulative emotional and psychological wounding of an individual or generation caused by traumatic experiences or events. Historical trauma can be incurred by any group of people that experience a trauma- for example genocide, enslavement, or ethnic cleansing. Historical trauma is something we need to learn more about because it can affect entire groups of people for generations and it needs to be given a proper place at the table when talking about mental health and healing.
Imagine an entire group of people experienced a traumatic event- a mass genocide for example- and everyone left alive connected to that culture, were traumatized. Adults and children alike could suffer from an array of mental health issues including PTSD. This suffering can be transmitted through generations, and has a lasting impact on the mental health of those communities. Healing wounds on this scale is no small matter.
Native Americans, for example, have for hundreds of years, endured physical, emotional, social, and spiritual genocide. Historical trauma is real and a part of what is happening with native people today, they are suffering from intergenerational trauma. Dr. Maria Yellow Horse Brave Heart, a Native American social worker, associate professor and mental health expert says