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  1. "I didn't want to hear the sounds of explosions," an eight-year-old Palestinian girl said as she sat with her mother
  2. Up to 1,800 homes have reportedly been destroyed and damaged in Gayan, representing 70% of district's housing stock, said OCHA
  3. Lady Gaga has said she was inspired to perform the role in House of Gucci by her personal sexual assault trauma
  4. The 'Mean Girl' actor revealed that she had something that went wrong with her second pregnancy
  5. The popular Netflix series, House Of Secrets: The Burari Deaths by Leena Yadav offers us a peek into the case where lines between fact and fantasy seem to blur. Across a span of three episodes, the audience is taken through the events that purportedly led to the family’s demise. While it’s natural to be stunned with disbelief while watching the series, it also gives us an opportunity to understand how trauma works on different levels. On the occasion of ‘World Trauma Day’, we got in touch with Dr. Roma Kumar, a Clinical Psychologist who was featured in Netflix’s House Of Secrets: The Burari Death, to discuss and understand the nature of trauma in our daily lives: 1. Traumas Are DistressingIn House Of Secrets, Lalit Chundawat, youngest among the siblings, lost his speech after his father’s demise. This emotionally traumatic incident may have affected him more adversely than any of the family members may have anticipated. The family even avoided discussing Lalit’s inability to speak, with other family members. According to Dr. Roma Kumar, such distressing events can trigger a variety of emotions in an individual, “Traumatic triggers can lead to a flurry of emotions such as irritability, anger, sleep difficulties, difficulty in relationships, and even intrusive thoughts in the form of recurring flashbacks and nightmares. People who have undergone severe trauma may have trouble processing positive emotions. They start avoiding people, and places, even thoughts, and memories associated with the traumatic event.” © Netflix 2. Traumas Are Not Isolated EventsThe general understanding of trauma revolves around treating it as a point in time that cannot be addressed in the future. But nothing can be farther from the truth. The effects of unresolved trauma can result in a full-blown CPTSD (Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), as in Lalit’s case. Dr. Roma says that trauma can stem from a combination of events, “There are triggers in your life that can be traumatic events: injuries to the body, or a violent act, or a sexual violation, or any shocking event. That can be when one is exposed to a traumatic event. So it (trauma) can be a combination of stressors.” © Netflix 3. Trauma Can AccumulateAs discussed in the previous point, traumatic incidents aren’t always isolated incidents in time. In Lalit’s case, he’d undergone a bike accident (suffering from a head injury), a near-fatal attack (locked in a burning godown), and then his father’s demise (emotional trauma). But because of the limited access and knowledge of mental health, these issues went unaddressed, thus taking a great toll on his mind. “Usually, symptoms associated with trauma get better with time. But for some people, more intense symptoms linger or interfere with daily life, and they go on for days and months. For them, these feelings don’t go away on their own. They go through extreme symptoms of stress such as deep sadness, worry, fear, panic. Everybody recovers at their own pace, most people recover on their own with time. But we need to ask for help when it starts making us dysfunctional. So whenever extreme symptoms of stress are there and it is interfering with your daily life, with your school, with your work, with your relationships, or social functioning, it’s time to address it”, says Dr. Roma. © Netflix 4. Trauma Is UniversalEvery human being has the potential to suffer from various kinds of trauma. This is why it’s crucial to discuss traumatic incidents more openly and honestly. It can help alleviate the feelings of loneliness and isolation that people suffering from PTSD can often undergo. Dr. Roma states, “The traumatized end up becoming a vulnerable part of a population after the experience. The intensity and capacity for trauma keep changing for everybody. Trauma happens in everybody’s life, but how we address the trauma can sometimes be more important than the incident in itself. The word trauma itself is loaded with negativity, with some kind of injury being caused to the mind. But if trauma has been happening frequently, or if life’s circumstances have been such where a person is continuously going through triggers, then how they process that trigger and take it forward is vital to their recovery.” © Netflix 5. Trauma Can Be InvisibleIn the case of the Chundawat family, the trauma wasn’t visible to them, as they were deeply invested in Lalit’s psychosis. The family never realized that they were going through a traumatic experience (invisible traumas), over the course of 11 years. The loss of agency may have felt empowering for the family, as the collective did prosper financially because of Lalit’s instructions. This could snowball into a heavier dependence. In the Chundawat family, blame was often assigned to various members of the family so that they could repent for their ‘misdoings’. This may have been a way to keep the family’s secrets inside the home. A similar equation has been observed between devotees and cult leaders. “People within a cult follow the leader, because they feel at peace, at calm. You’re able to move forward in life. Roz Mandir jaana hai. The followers are made to do something blindly as a routine. They don’t feel safe and aren’t allowed to feel vulnerable either. When one is in such a state, it is natural for their body’s stimuli to stress out and get triggered immensely. But the leader’s presence and rituals provide calm in such situations.”, explains Dr. Roma Kumar. © Netflix 6. Trauma Can Be TreatedIt’s not all doom and gloom though, there is hope for everyone. People whose lives have been adversely affected by their traumas can seek help from mental health professionals to alleviate their situation. It’s similar to how you may visit a doctor if you have an upset stomach. Dr. Roma shares a realistic example to help understand this situation, “Everyone can experience stomach aches. Sometimes it can be caused by overeating. It can also be caused by not eating enough. But if the issue lasts for more than a few days, despite your best efforts to remedy the pain, then you will naturally go to a doctor for further investigation. Similarly, for mental health issues, we must reach out to a mental health professional for help. Usually, it will go away. But if it doesn’t, it means that it’s affecting your mind and body and we must address it on a deeper level.” © Netflix 7. Trauma In MenIn Lalit’s case, he took on the burden of filling in the power vacuum left behind by his father, Bhopal Singh’s death. In a patriarchal system, men are expected to be stoic and emotionless. Any sign of emotion is treated as a symptom of weakness. Perhaps, if Lalit hadn’t desperately tried to present a dispassionate facade, he may have been able to discuss the issues he grieved. Dr. Roma explains how men face issues in confronting their emotions, “Logon ko apne bhavnaon ki dekhbhal karna sikhaya nahi jaata hai. We are not taught how to take care of our emotions. We are taught to remain happy. We are taught to not be sad. But isn’t it normal to feel sad? Men should be allowed to talk about their emotions. They should be made to feel comfortable talking about their issues comfortably and openly.” © Netflix Remember, there’s always hope and you're not alone. The future can be brighter once we take the first step. "Your mind is precious and we want you to know that. Learn more about our mental health initiative: His Mental Health" View the full article
  6. Amidst all the hullabaloo about the cancellation of the fifth Test at Old Trafford, everyone just quite conveniently overlooked the mental trauma the Indian players endured after a COVID-19 breakout inside their camp. Everyone was busy playing the blame game as to why the match was cancelled just hours before the toss. Shouldn’t the announcement have been made the night before to avoid any inconvenience to the fans, who spent their hard-earned money and travelled from different parts of the country to enjoy the series final? © Reuters While all these concerns are genuine, let’s not forget the concern of Indian players that there could be a further rise in COVID-19 cases among the players was equally genuine. They had no idea things would escalate this rapidly and the series would come to such an unfortunate end. It’s no secret that the incubation period of COVID-19 is 2-3 days. The players were genuinely afraid that they would be an even bigger hole if the match started and they developed symptoms during the game. © Reuters Rather than thinking rationally, the English media and some cricket experts like Michael Vaughan were hell bent on proving Indian cricketers as the real villains. Not once did they raise the issue of Indian players’ mental well-being. The panic inside the camp was genuine because the assistant physio who tested positive had treated several Indian players in the last few days. More than their own health, the players were worried about the well-being of their family members. © Reuters Dinesh Karthik, who was part of the commentary panel a few weeks ago, explained the grim situation inside the Indian camp the night before the final Test match. Most of the players were so terrified that they couldn’t sleep and were awake till 3:00 am in the morning. “Let's take an example for today, most of the guys today haven't even slept till 2.30-3 in the morning because they don't know if they have to be ready for the match, they don't know because you know it's very late in India, so they don't know if they're going to be able to speak to ECB those kinds of discussions were gone,” Karthik told Sky Sports. © Reuters “So most of them haven't even slept till 3 O'clock so the Test match happening today was out of the question almost. It's whether they can delay it further, but you have to remember that there is a good chance that in the RT-PCR test three days later, someone could test positive and if he's in the playing 11, then what happens to that person,” Karthik explained. The manner in which the match was called off was really unfortunate but one shouldn’t forget that there was a genuine concern about the safety and well-being of the Indian players. You can criticise them for letting the fans down but don’t forget that they are also humans not machines and their safety is as important as any of us. View the full article
  7. Actor Kabir Bedi is known for his versatile work in Bollywood and is also a famous face overseas as well. Bedi is one of the few names from Bollywood who had a chance to spread their wings in Hollywood. He is remembered for his character in the James Bond movie Octopussy. For over a year, he also starred in a famous show, Bold and Beautiful, which became the second most-watched show globally. © Instagram/Kabir Bedi © Instagram/Kabir Bedi Since he was a part of the James Bond movie, the actor mentioned how exceptional his experience was in the Bond family and having millions of fans worldwide. He said, "Any actor who plays any role of any interest in a Bond film becomes a person of great interest to hundreds of millions of Bond fans around the world. You become part of the Bond family and that's a very special experience. So while the hero might be preferable, being a Bond villain is no less joyous, glamorous, or no less exciting." View the full article
  8. Oprah Winfrey recently shed light on all the trauma she dealt with as a child
  9. A trauma expert gets candid over the experiences Demi Lovato detailed in ?Dancing With the Devil?
  10. Demi Lovato gets candid over her past experiences reliving ?textbook trauma reenactments?
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