Racism is traumatic. It is painful, violent, harmful, and deeply felt by those on the receiving end. The lasting effects and trauma of experiencing racism can show up in emotions, behaviors, and in many other ways.
Dr. Kenneth V. Hardy suggests that rather than asking, “What is wrong”, a trauma-informed approach would be to question, “What happened to you?” Numerous studies show that racism and discrimination are forms of trauma, and the lasting psychological effects can be similar to those of veterans who have experienced combat. Post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD, is becoming more commonly diagnosed in marginalized communities as racism and discrimination continue to create psychological, emotional, and physical harm.
It is important to understand this trauma to be able to move forward. Check out the info below, including a helpful list of ways to contribute to “healing the hidden wounds” of racial trauma, and a local resource for self-care and equitable access to yoga.