Room to Thrive

Room to Thrive

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"There is a common piece of advice that flows through many cultures once touched by Christian missionaries: Do unto others as you would have done to yourself.

What few of these well meaning warriors of Christ had ever paused to contemplate was that others might not wish to have done what you would wish for, and that this adage, taken to it’s conclusion, has always been one with the potential for causing catastrophic harm."

https://neuroclastic.com/2021/05/06/review-sensory-trauma-autism-sensory-difference-and-the-daily-experience-of-fear/?fbclid=IwAR0eyYw4KxbyJjD2P7w9ztXXeryQathyhjqguH6mJn4HEXM5jm2B2Y_2eyM
Hey! My research partner and I are conducting a survey on the ways in which religious support and substance use can impact perceived adversity during the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey should take no more than 10 minutes, and all responses will remain anonymous. You have the right to withdraw at any time. Feel free to distribute the link as you see fit. Click the link in my bio for the survey. We really appreciate your time!
Hey! My research partner and I are conducting a survey on the ways in which religious support and substance use can impact perceived adversity during the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey should take no more than 10 minutes, and all responses will remain anonymous. You have the right to withdraw at any time. Feel free to distribute the link as you see fit. Click the link in my bio for the survey. We really appreciate your time!

Resolve Religious Trauma and experience safety, vitality, and connection. Religious Trauma Therapy & Trauma-informed Coaching. I help survivors resolve religious trauma, so they can live a life of vitality, meaning, and connection. -Brian Peck, LCSW

Operating as usual

Photos from Room to Thrive's post 07/23/2021

This post is for you if…⠀

🔹 You're a trauma survivor⠀

🔹 You care about someone who has experienced trauma⠀

🔹 You recognize that humans have an autonomic nervous system that functions largely outside our direct control⠀

I’m sure you’ve seen some version of this quote…⠀

"You can’t always control what happens to you, but you can control how you respond."⠀

While this may be true in some cases, there are many experiences where we have little or no control over how we respond.⠀

You can’t always control how you respond…⠀

🔹 Because you’re a human with an autonomic nervous system.⠀

🔹 Because your nervous system prioritizes survival over making deliberate choices.⠀

🔹 Because intentional responses require a level of safety that may not be present.⠀

🔹 Because your autonomic nervous system can respond without your direct control.⠀

🔹 And it’s unhelpful to blame or shame you for your autonomic responses.⠀

🔹 And it’s okay to reject misguided toxic positivity that ignores your humanity.⠀

🔹 And you can appreciate your survival responses that happen outside of your control.⠀

🔹 And there’s no shame in being a human with an autonomic nervous system.⠀

When we tell folks to control processes that are outside of their control, we are ensuring failure, inviting shame, and justifying blame.⠀

We are effectively telling them to not listen to their bodies, to not trust their nervous systems, and to treat their suffering as a personal failing rather than an important source of information.⠀

Instead of dismissing basic survival biology and insisting that we “can control how we respond,” wouldn't it be more helpful to focus on creating safer and more supportive contexts that enhance our ability to respond?⠀

I would love to hear your thoughts!⠀

-Brian⠀

#ReligiousTrauma #Trauma #TraumaInformed #AdverseReligiousExperiences #ToxicPositivity #PolyvagalTheory #SomaticExperiencing #Deconstruction #FaithDeconstruction #RoomToThrive

Photos from Room to Thrive's post 07/22/2021

When folks tell me to, “Trust the Process” I have a few questions…⠀

I spent too many years trusting a process that didn’t work for me.⠀

I was assured that God’s plan was perfect, religious leaders knew what was best, and “all things work together for good” if I only trust the process.⠀

These external sources of control often required me to disregard my humanity, distrust myself, and “lean not unto my own understanding.”⠀

They said my heart was “deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked” and my body was not to be trusted.⠀

It was not possible to safely exist in my body, and I was required to live inside of beliefs, ideas, and mental constructs.⠀

I’ve encountered similar ideas outside of religion where “The Universe” replaced God as the benevolent process to be trusted with similar messages like, “everything happens for a reason“ and "The Universe gives us exactly what we need."⠀

Whether it’s an Abrahamic God, The Universe, or a cosmic force that permeates everything, the message is strikingly similar — simply trust the process.⠀

Here are a few of my questions…⠀

🔹 What Process?⠀

🔹 Whose Process?⠀

🔹 To what end?⠀

🔹 Who benefits from the process?⠀

🔹 What do I have to give up to trust the process?⠀

🔹 How can my trust be exploited by those who need me to trust the process?⠀

🔹 What if the process doesn’t work for me?⠀

🔹 If the process doesn’t work for me, will I be blamed for not trusting enough? #Gaslighting⠀

🔹 Why not encourage me to trust myself within the process rather than the process itself?⠀

🔹 How can I safely trust the process without trusting myself first?⠀

To be clear, I appreciate the trust that’s possible within safe and supportive relationships. However, trust-falling into a deity, another human, an organization, or The Universe isn’t about trusting the process as much as it’s about trusting myself within the process.⠀

The process itself isn’t inherently healing, and transformation tends to happen relationally — which is to say, my relationship with the process is important.⠀

Here's to trusting yourself within the process!⠀

–Brian

Photos from Room to Thrive's post 07/20/2021

What if he’s not a bad apple? What if he’s the product of a rotten tree?⠀

In response to the latest mugshot in a long lineup of religious leaders who exploit and abuse others within the safety and secrecy of an organizational culture that predictably produces “bad apples.”⠀

Is he a “bad apple” or…⠀

🌳 is the tree rotten all the way down to the patriarchal roots growing deep in secrecy?⠀

🥀 is the tree growing in soil that has been leached of accountability?⠀

💪🏻 has the tree been carefully pruned for male privilege and power?⠀

⛪️ has shame and oppression been grafted onto every branch of the organization?⠀

🧑🏼‍🌾 have beliefs, practices, and structures been carefully cultivated to propagate power from root to fruit?⠀

💁🏻‍♂️ is this exactly the kind of fruit you get from husbandry carefully designed to conserve male privilege?⠀

🍎 is this “the fruit by which we should know them?”⠀

🤷🏻‍♂️ is this just another way to avoid taking responsibility for the conditions that produced the rotten fruit?⠀

🌳 is he just another apple that didn’t fall far from the tree? 🍎⠀

This is not about a few bad apples, nor is it an excuse to condemn the whole of religion. However, it is an opportunity to consider the myriad beliefs, practices, and structures that cultivate harmful and exploitive behaviors.⠀

What other systemic factors within religious organizations have you observed contributing to adverse religious experiences?⠀

-Brian⠀

#ChurchToo #MeToo #Trauma #ReligiousTrauma #SpiritualAbuse #ReligiousAbuse #AdverseReligiousExperiences #Patriarchy #Authoritarianism #Deconstruction #DoBetterChuch #IGotOut #RoomToThrive

07/11/2021

Thank you for expanding this important conversation about trauma!

One night while laying in bed, I typed out a few thoughts on my phone in response to a dismissive blog post entitled "Trauma is Not Your Fault, But Healing is Your Responsibility." The next day when I shared my thoughts on my page, I had no idea the post would resonate with so many other survivors.

In 2019 this post reached over 2 million folks on Facebook, and The Mighty and Yahoo republished it as, "What You Should Know Before Sharing This 'Inspirational' Trauma Meme."

This past week the post took off again (I'm guessing a larger account shared it) and it has reached over 3.6 million folks and counting! If you discovered this post on another page, I would love to know so I can thank them.

If you're new here, welcome! I'm glad you're here, and I hope you find my content useful for your continued healing and growth. I invite you to follow me on Instagram @roomtothrive where I share similar content and glimpses into my personal journey.

Trauma is not your fault. Period.

-Brian

Note: The author of the blog post, "Trauma is Not Your Fault, But Healing is Your Responsibility" updated the post on July 5, 2021. It's now titled "What Happened To You Was Not Your Fault, But How You Go Forward Is Your Responsibility." 🤷🏻‍♂️

#Trauma #PTSD #CPTSD #ReligiousTrauma #RoomToThrive

Trauma is not your fault. (Period)

(Take all the time you need for that to sink in)

Over the past several years, the following phrase/meme has made its rounds.

“Trauma is not your fault, but healing is your responsibility.”

There’s something about it that never sat well with me, and last night I jotted down a few of my thoughts. I’d love to know what you think.

Folks who’ve experienced trauma are familiar with the dismissive “but” that often follows, “trauma is not your fault, but...”

“...but I should have fought back.”

“...but I shouldn’t have gone to that party.”

“...but I should have seen the red flags.”

“...but what were you wearing?”

“...but healing is your responsibility.”

This last “but” appears well-intentioned while still carrying a similar weight of individual responsibility for a process that is rarely possible on one’s own.

It has that familiar individualist ring to it that has folks grabbing for their bootstraps while standing alone in their suffering.

Trauma is not your fault. Period.

*long pause*

I can’t begin to describe the importance of that full stop or the healing potential contained within the space that follows.

As soon as we add a “but...” we knock some of the air out of this realization. It feels like a punch in the gut or that sinking feeling that accompanies “...but I should be over it by now.”

While the idea of personal responsibility comes with a bit of hope, it also comes with pressure. In my experience, this burden outweighs the hope for many trauma survivors.

When pressure outweighs hope, it’s no longer empowering. Embodied hope has the potential to be a resource for a survivor’s nervous system. Pressure, on the other hand, comes with the risk of overwhelming one’s nervous system or keeping it stuck in freeze/collapse physiology.

Trauma is already an isolated place, and making healing “your” responsibility remains limited to one person. Trauma already feels like a personal failing or weakness, and “your responsibility” adds one more shortcoming to your list, that of not yet healing.

Something happens when we add a well-placed full stop at the end of, “Trauma is not your fault [full stop]”

This pause creates some much-needed space. A space that is frequently punctuated with a sigh of relief. It’s a place without a dismissive “but...” or added pressure of any kind. This pause may be the first time a survivor feels heard and understood.

It’s important to hang out here for a while.

There’s a great deal of healing potential here if we’re willing to sit with survivors without giving in to our impulse to fix it, solve it, make it go away, or in this example, ascribe responsibility.

To be clear, I believe in survivors’ capacity for healing, which is why I’m passionate about helping to create a supportive and empowering context. I’m not convinced that saying, “...,but you’re responsible for your healing” creates a supportive context.

We don’t heal alone. We’re social mammals who require the presence of another nervous system for critical developmental tasks, and our ability to co-regulate is vital for healing trauma.

Humans need to feel safe, strong, and connected, and we’d be well-served to keep these in mind as we search for what to say next.

So, what do we say to a trauma survivor after they’ve had the space and time to acknowledge trauma is not their fault?

Here are a few possibilities:

“...and healing is possible.”

“...and you have the capacity to heal within safe and supportive relationships.”

“...and I’m committed to being here with you as a resource for your nervous system.”

What would you add?

Again, I assume the original idea is offered with the best intention. However, language is powerful and “but” is often dismissive and may do more to reinforce trauma physiology than to create a context for healing.

I also recognize that each person’s experience is unique, and the original phrase may be helpful for some folks. If that’s the case for you, I validate your experience and celebrate what works for you!

If, however, you’ve felt uneasy when you encountered the original phrase, I’d love to hear your reaction to my rambling thoughts above.

-Brian

#Trauma #ReligiousTrauma #RoomToThrive

Trauma is Not Your Fault. [period] — Room to Thrive 07/10/2021

Trauma is Not Your Fault. [period] — Room to Thrive

Trauma is not your fault.

Period.

#Trauma #PTSD #CPTSD #ReligiousTrauma

Trauma is Not Your Fault. [period] — Room to Thrive Take all the time you need for that to sink in. Over the past several years, the following phrase/meme has made its rounds. “Trauma is not your fault, but healing is your responsibility.” There’s something about it that never sat well with me, and last night I jotted down a few of my thoughts.

07/04/2021

Over the years, I’ve grown wary of the idea of independence especially when expressed at the extremes.⠀

Like most ideas, independence has a range of functions that vary depending on the context.⠀

When a two-year-old proclaims, “I did it all by myself” we celebrate their newfound ability while excusing their limited perspective. When an adult claims to be a “self-made human,” it’s more difficult to overlook their myopic perspective.⠀

We’re social creatures after all whose existence is dependent on others. We all show up with a long history and are born into a milieu of forces that shape the options that are available to us.⠀

Show me someone who thinks they're a self-made human and I’ll show you someone who is unaware of how much they benefited from the contributions of others.⠀

Why am I talking about independence and interdependence on my page that focuses on trauma?⠀

From a trauma perspective, the idea of independence can feel like a mix of pressure, isolation, shame, and hope.⠀

Pressure, in that survivors get the message that they “should have been able to prevent their trauma” or “heal themselves.”⠀

Isolation, in that it’s risky to seek support when any form of dependence is stigmatized as weakness.⠀

Shame, in that survivors have little choice but to internalize the feeling of powerlessness when it’s unacceptable to be anything but independent and strong.⠀

Hope, in that regaining one’s independence can be part of the healing process.⠀

What if we destigmatized dependence and embraced the reality that we need each other?⠀

What if we took independence down from its lofty pedestal and acknowledged our interconnectedness?⠀

What if we celebrated our interdependence?⠀

–Brian⠀

#Independence #independenceday #Interdependence #interconnected #sharedhumanity #Trauma #ReligiousTrauma #fourthofjuly #Deconstruction #RoomToThrive

Over the years, I’ve grown wary of the idea of independence especially when expressed at the extremes.⠀

Like most ideas, independence has a range of functions that vary depending on the context.⠀

When a two-year-old proclaims, “I did it all by myself” we celebrate their newfound ability while excusing their limited perspective. When an adult claims to be a “self-made human,” it’s more difficult to overlook their myopic perspective.⠀

We’re social creatures after all whose existence is dependent on others. We all show up with a long history and are born into a milieu of forces that shape the options that are available to us.⠀

Show me someone who thinks they're a self-made human and I’ll show you someone who is unaware of how much they benefited from the contributions of others.⠀

Why am I talking about independence and interdependence on my page that focuses on trauma?⠀

From a trauma perspective, the idea of independence can feel like a mix of pressure, isolation, shame, and hope.⠀

Pressure, in that survivors get the message that they “should have been able to prevent their trauma” or “heal themselves.”⠀

Isolation, in that it’s risky to seek support when any form of dependence is stigmatized as weakness.⠀

Shame, in that survivors have little choice but to internalize the feeling of powerlessness when it’s unacceptable to be anything but independent and strong.⠀

Hope, in that regaining one’s independence can be part of the healing process.⠀

What if we destigmatized dependence and embraced the reality that we need each other?⠀

What if we took independence down from its lofty pedestal and acknowledged our interconnectedness?⠀

What if we celebrated our interdependence?⠀

–Brian⠀

#Independence #independenceday #Interdependence #interconnected #sharedhumanity #Trauma #ReligiousTrauma #fourthofjuly #Deconstruction #RoomToThrive

07/02/2021

I believe survivors.⠀

I’m skeptical AF of systems fueled by power, control, and privilege.⠀

-Brian⠀

#BelieveSurvivors #SexualAssaultAwareness #YouAreNotAlone #MeToo #ChurchToo #sexualassaultsurvivor #sexualabusesurvivor #smashthepatriarchy #purityculture #religioustrauma #trauma #adversereligiousexperiences #mentalhealthawareness #consent #nomeansno #supportsurvivors #toxictheology #endrapeculture #roomtothrive

I believe survivors.⠀

I’m skeptical AF of systems fueled by power, control, and privilege.⠀

-Brian⠀

#BelieveSurvivors #SexualAssaultAwareness #YouAreNotAlone #MeToo #ChurchToo #sexualassaultsurvivor #sexualabusesurvivor #smashthepatriarchy #purityculture #religioustrauma #trauma #adversereligiousexperiences #mentalhealthawareness #consent #nomeansno #supportsurvivors #toxictheology #endrapeculture #roomtothrive

Photos from Room to Thrive's post 06/24/2021

Deconstructing your faith is often a process of resolving cognitive dissonance by valuing humanity more than ideology.⠀

Cognitive dissonance is a common human experience that results from holding two conflicting beliefs, values, or attitudes.⠀

As it relates to faith deconstruction, this tension often exists between...⠀

🔹your religious experience and your human experience.⠀

🔹the expectations of others and your own well-being.⠀

🔹your desire for certainty and your desire to reduce suffering.⠀

🔹following the rules and embodying your values.⠀

🔹what's required to be accepted and what's required to be accepting.⠀

🔹holding your beliefs tightly and embracing your humanity.⠀

🔹taking every thought captive and letting the soft animal of your body love what it loves.⠀

While we may be unable to avoid this unique form of discomfort, it's possible to resolve the dissonance in the direction of our personal values rather than religious ideology.⠀

Of course, this is not as simple as it sounds, and from a trauma-informed perspective it's important to recognize that resolving dissonance is often influenced by our survival needs.⠀

Here's to enough safety and support to fully embrace your humanity and resolve your cognitive dissonance in the direction of a life you can love!⠀

-Brian⠀

#Deconstruction #FaithDeconstruction #ReligiousTrauma #AdverseReligiousExperiences #Trauma #RoomToThrive

Resolve Religious Trauma

Hi, my name is Brian Peck, I’m a licensed clinical social worker, my pronouns are he/him, and I understand religious trauma.

You deserve to work with someone who understands the life-altering impact of adverse religious experiences. Not only do I get it, I’ve devoted my professional life to helping survivors resolve their religious trauma.

As a Therapist, I help survivors resolve their religious trauma with body-based therapy and resources.

As a Coach, I empower folks who have been harmed by religion, to clarify their values and learn to trust themselves with trauma-informed coaching and resources.

Videos (show all)

Transforming Shame
You are enough.
Religious Trauma & Race
An Experiment in Connection
Post-traumatic Growth
It's okay to be human.
Social Connection while Social Distancing
How Can Curiosity Help You Thrive After Religion?
There's Power in Your Story
You do not have to be good.
The ACT Question

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Category

Products

Religious Trauma Therapy available in Idaho
Trauma-informed Coaching available online

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Address


6126 W State Street Suite 406
Boise, ID
83703

Opening Hours

Monday 09:00 - 17:00
Tuesday 09:00 - 16:00
Wednesday 09:00 - 16:00
Thursday 09:00 - 18:00
Friday 10:00 - 17:00
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