"Just by listening deeply we alleviate pain and suffering."

- Buddhist Saying



"A quotable woman: What you know in your head will not sustain you in moments of crisis... confidence comes from body awareness, knowing what you feel in the moment"

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Trauma Therapy

What is trauma?

Trauma is traditionally defined as situations where people find themselves 'trapped and terrified.' Such situations need not be life-threatening in order to induce a traumatic response. The way individuals experience and respond to such circumstances may be affected by several factors: their personal temperament, their perception of the severity of the threat, prior trauma they may have experienced, and the support and emotional connection they have to a significant other. Early childhood trauma predisposes individuals to other traumatic personal or interpersonal incidents later in life. Ultimately, it is not the event itself that determines whether something is traumatic, but rather the individual's experience of the event.

The effects of trauma

Various conditions commonly occur as a result of a traumatic event. Such effects can be delayed for months or even years, and individuals often do not associate these effects with the initial trauma. Self-destructive thoughts and behaviours arising from untreated and unresolved trauma can include addictions, unexplained anxiety, poor relationship choices, social withdrawal and most significantly, feelings of hopelessness, despair and shame.

The work of trauma therapy

Research now reveals that emotional distress is stored in the human body. Effective forms of psychotherapy, especially A.E.D.P and sensorimotor psychotherapy, are available that can process and desensitize the trauma in a gentler, less intrusive manner than previously possible. Having specialized in these areas of psychotherapy, Susan's top priority is ensuring the safety, self-protection and self-care that is so needed by the client. As appropriate, she collaborates with physicians and psychiatrists to provide a 'team approach' to therapy, and can refer clients, if required, to suitable organizations or treatment centres.

Who it's for:

  • Individuals who have suffered recent or past trauma, and who are currently experiencing traumatic symptoms. These individuals may or may not be aware that their distress originates with a traumatic incident or at a certain time in their lives. Within the caring and patient environment of individual therapy, Susan works with the client to process and heal the traumatic wound. Through relational work, any developmental issues can also be addressed.

Desired outcome:

People can — and do — recover from trauma. The aim of trauma therapy is to reduce the negative thoughts and behaviours arising from the traumatic injury, helping individuals achieve healthier relationships with themselves, with others, and with their environment.


Susan Stephenson, R.P. M.Ed. Toronto, Ontario
586 Eglinton Ave. East, Suite 809, Toronto, Ontario M4P 1P2
Phone: 416-964-8271 Email: susan@susanstephenson.ca