Indian Country Today published a two part series on this subject. Here is a short part of part 2 published: Nov 30, 2010
“In America, child abuse is a public health problem. It can be resolved by prevention and intervention. Of the three million reports of child abuse in 2001, one million of which are proven, in 80 percent of the cases the child’s parents acted as caregiver. Consequently, many social taboos prevent timely reporting. Children exposed to alcoholic parents or domestic violence show symptoms of depression, a variety of medical problems as well as a range of impulsive and self-destructive behavior.
In the few excursions of Dr. van der Kolk to Indian reservations, he noticed a prevalence of self-hating stories and jokes. A similar condition appears with children who experience developmental trauma. Contrasting with the self-hate of some Native Americans, Dr. van der Kolk noticed the rich culture of the tribes in their stories, songs and rituals. Just as some adults who experienced childhood trauma developed into talented creative artists, Native Americans can use their rich heritage to heal and restore each family to a healthy lifestyle.
. . . Developmental trauma disorder considers complex trauma to arise mainly from interpersonal events such as sexual or physical abuse. Childhood abuse affects the adult both physically and emotionally. Adults who experienced childhood abuse had a significant increased likelihood to suffer from depression, suicide attempts, alcoholism, drug abuse, sexual promiscuity and domestic violence among other symptoms. . . .”