Franklin Trauma Counseling

Trauma Counseling – Therapists and Counselors in Franklin, MA

A soldier who served his country faithful comes home to his wife and young children. His wife often awakens him at night telling him that he thrashes around in bed violently as he sleeps. The ex-soldier knows he is experiencing night terrors with images of horrific acts of violence that he has personally experienced.

A young mother continues to have flashback to a time during her youth when she was sexually assaulted by a family member. Her feelings of resentment and even anger grow daily as her own daughter approaches the age that she was when she was abused.

Stories such as these are very real and occur far too often. People who experience them feel as if they are all alone. However, they are not. They are suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).


It is estimated that approximately 3.5% of Americans exhibit symptoms of PTSD each year. Nine per cent of people develop signs of PTSD during some period of their lives. Rates of PTSD in the rest of the world range between 0.5% and 1%. This lower estimate may be due to differences in assessment and diagnostic techniques. However, it is also estimated that rates of PTSD are higher in areas of the world that are experiencing war and regular violent conflict.

The effect of trauma on an individual’s mental well-being has been documented since the times of ancient Greece. Mythology illustrate incidents of terrible events and how they affect the mood and behavior of those who experience them. Documented occurrences of PSTD-related symptoms increased during the two World Wars but was called by different phrases such as “shell shock” or “combat neurosis”. The use of the term “posttraumatic stress disorder” began in the 1970s following the return of Vietnam military veterans.

Causes of Trauma

The following is a list of traumatic occurrences and situations that can result in symptoms of PTSD:

  • Active military duty in a combat area;
  • Physical and/or sexual abuse experienced as an adult or child;
  • Surviving a natural disaster such as a hurricane, flood, fire, or earthquake;
  • Witnessing a violent or another horrific event;
  • Living through an automobile or other transportation accident;
  • Having a spouse or long-term partner who has been unfaithful;
  • Being a victim of bullying as a child;
  • Victim of serious injury (e.g., burns, dog attack), major surgery (e.g., heart surgery), or life-threatening illness (e.g., childhood cancer);
  • Sudden unexpected or violent death of someone close (e.g., suicide, accident).

Signs and Symptoms

Below are a list of signs and symptoms of PTSD.

Re-experiencing symptoms include:

  • Flashbacks—re-living the incident of trauma persistently,
  • Recurring physical symptoms such as a racing heart, sweating breathing or difficulty,
  • Recurring nightmares,
  • Persistent and uncontrollable fearful thoughts.

These symptoms often create problems in a person’s attempt to live out their everyday lives. Situations, sounds, sights even smells that are reminiscent of the traumatic event can trigger re-experiencing symptoms.

Avoidance symptoms include:
Actively staying away from certain locations or events.

  • Often the person themselves do not know why they are avoiding these situations. It is likely that these are setting events to the person’s experience of trauma.

Avoiding seemingly random objects.

  • These objects generate thoughts or feelings related to the traumatic event.

Arousal and reactivity symptoms include:

  • Regularly feeling irritable or being agitated,
  • Easy eliciting a startled reflex,
  • Difficulty getting to sleep or waking easily,
  • Unprovoked, overt angry outbursts.

Cognition and mood symptoms include:

  • Difficulty recalling important aspects of the traumatic event or not remembering it at all,
  • Poor self-image often with a corresponding negative outlook toward the world,
  • Unrealistic sense of guilt and shame,
  • No longer interested in previously preferred activities.

Children’s reaction to trauma

Like adults, children’s reaction to trauma can be severe and disruptive to daily functioning. In children under 6 years of age symptoms may include:

  • Extreme attachment to a parent or another care giving adult,
  • Continued incontinence after toilet training had been previously successful,
  • Acting out the trauma event when playing,
  • A refusal or apparent inability to speak.

As a child approaches adolescence, symptoms of PTSD become similar to adults. However, there may also be an increase is disruptive, destructive and even aggressive behaviors. Older children and teens are also more prone to feeling guilty or blame themselves for not preventing serious injury or deaths of a loved one.

Treatments and Therapies

The two most used treatments for PTSD are medications, psychotherapy (“talk” therapy), or a combination of both. Since there is a wide range of ways that trauma effects different people, the specific type of treatment that will be effective differs from person to person as well. It is important for individuals showing signs of PTSD that they seek help from a professional trained in effective trauma treatment. It has been shown that the sooner someone seeks treatment the more likely symptoms will decrease and even be eliminated.

There are many types of therapies that have been shown to be helpful in addressing symptoms of PTSD. Certain therapies target the symptoms directly. Others focus on an individual’s ability to function in social, family, or job-related situations. The treating clinician may decide to combine different therapies depending on each person’s needs.

Through psychotherapy and/or the use of medication, an individual can relearn how to address more typical stress associated with everyday living but that have become overwhelming because of trauma. A trained therapist can help an individual develop techniques to reduce anxiety often associated with trauma as well as functional skills that can be helpful in restoring one’s efficacy performing daily routines.

Here are some specific techniques that have been proven to be effective.

  • Educate the person suffering from trauma about symptoms and their effects,
  • Teach effective coping skills such as relaxation exercises, guided imagery and anger-management techniques,
  • Provide guidance on how to improve sleep, diet, exercise habits and other ways to improve the body’s ability to handle stress,
  • Train people to identify and address guilt, self-blame, and other feelings that are associated with trauma.

Get Help Now

If you or someone you love are experiencing the effects of a traumatic event that is getting in the way of going through a regular daily routine, a therapist at Thriveworks-Franklin can be a great help. The trauma professionals at Thriveworks Franklin are skilled at both assessing and treating symptoms of trauma. The will also identify and use the treatment that is right for you.

So, call Thriveworks today at 617-360-7210. Thriveworks-Franklin counselors are leaders in their field, ready to work with you. There is no need to continue your search for answers to your problems. The counselors at Thriveworks are ready to partner with you to improve your life. Why delay any longer? Call now.

American Psychiatric Association (2013). Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (5th ed.). Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Publishing. pp. 271–280.

Bisson, JI; Cosgrove, S; Lewis, C; Robert, NP (26 November 2015). “Post-traumatic stress disorder”. BMJ (Clinical research ed.). 351

Carlstedt, Roland (2009). Handbook of Integrative Clinical Psychology, Psychiatry, and Behavioral Medicine Perspectives, Practices, and Research. New York: Springer Pub. Co. p. 353.

Herman, Judith (2015). Trauma and Recovery: The Aftermath of Violence—From Domestic Abuse to Political Terror. Basic Books. p. 9.

Klykylo, William M. (2012). Clinical child psychiatry (3. ed.). Chichester, West Sussex, UK: John Wiley & Sons. p. Chapter 15.

Thriveworks Counseling Franklin

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Overall Rating: 5★★★★★ based on 18 5 1 18 reviews. See all reviews
Thriveworks Counseling Franklin

Insight and Support

I was pleased with the quick and easy access to services through the Thriveworks website. My own HMO had a long process and wait list during these times of Covid. I chose Jane Eagles to work with because I wanted a mature therapist with lots of experience. She was able to tune right into my situation and my goals for the sessions. She raised great questions for me to consider and always took time to reiterate the main takeaways of our time together. I appreciated her wisdom and clarity as well as her sense of humor.
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Opened a New World of Healing

I can't speak any more highly of Thriveworks. Mikkah has truly been such an important person in my life since I started coming to therapy. I was skeptical at first, knowing that "the first therapist you see may not be the right 'fit' for you," but I was lucky enough to have immediately clicked with Mikkah. It took a bit of time for me to really open up and start to dig deep in my own emotion, but Mikkah was so patient and made me feel so comfortable. She truly has helped me identify a lot of different things I was feeling, but couldn't understand why. I originally came to therapy for adult ADD, recommended by my PCP, but I used therapy as a healthy outlet to start talking about things I have experienced that has caused my mental clarity to fog. Mikkah has truly been such a savior in my life and I can't express my gratitude I have for her. She is extremely professional but makes me feel so comfortable talking about literally anything - almost like we've been best friends for years, even though I just met her a few short months ago. I am so happy with how my therapy is going and I always leave a session feeling better than how I went in. Thank you Thriveworks and thank you especially to Mikkah! You are incredible!!
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Greg has made a difference in my life , he’s very understanding of what I’ve be through, makes suggestions to help me deal with my anxiety and depression. We are very blessed , to have him as our counselor, these past few years .
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Dr Jane Eagles

As a close professional colleague for 20 years I have seen Jane Eagles assist many children, adolescents, and families with a variety of life challenges achieve improved health and well being. Dr Jane Eagles is insightful, knowledgable, kind, patient, and helpful. I highly recommend her.
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Dr. Jane Eagles

Jane is a highly skilled and experienced clinician who has worked with people of all ages. Combined with her empathy, dedication, and respect for those with whom she works, Jane has proven to be extremely effective in helping others work on and achieve their goals. Her professionalism is undisputed and I recommend Jane without any reservation.
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Jane Eagles

Jane is an experienced, dedicated counselor who has worked with all age groups. Her commitment to whomever she is assisting is exemplary. Her professionalism is of the highest quality; compassion, confidentiality and respect are at the forefront. A wonderful counselor who has my personal and professional admiration.
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Jim Gardner helped me immensely

Jim helped me get through a rough patch in my life. He has a lot of wisdom from his past and his experience as a gay man. I came to him crying everyday and mopey, and by the end I had really seen a huge change in my overall mental health. I was not in the area for very long and he was excellent at making sure I got as much as possible from my limited number of sessions. I would absolutely recommend him to people in their early twenties struggling with their transition into adulthood as well as anyone struggling with general anxiety and depression. jó, én hiányozni fogom!
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Honest & Supportive

Jim Gardner helped me through the darkest time in my life. He was direct & honest while being compassionate and supportive. It’s like talking to a life long friend. I felt like I could talk openly without judgement. So thankful for you Jim!
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I wanted to chat to ask a question regarding insurance, a simple one I thought. The chat time said 2 minutes I waited longer and no response. A little discouraged now on getting a therapist.
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Having the pleasure of working with Ralphi, the first word that comes to my mind is comfort. When I think of Ralphi, my heart smiles. She is a talented and experienced therapist who makes every person that comes through her door feel hopeful. I have observed her in action with her clientele, collaborated with her on family therapy, and admire her immense knowledge of the human condition and difficulties. There is always a hopeful path to take in Ralphi's approach to life. Lucky are the clients who have her as their therapist!
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I have been seeing JIM Gardner for quite some time. He is a wonderful counselor who listens and cares. He has been a great help to me with many of my family problems and anxiety.
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Todd Letitia is a great clinician!

I have had the pleasure of knowing Mr. Letitia for over 10 years. He is a skilled clinician and offers his patients support and encouragement. He is a dedicated professional who has many years of experience in the field.
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I've had the pleasure of having Todd as a clinical supervisor and he was great!! He's very knowledgeable, insightful and most importantly he loves what he does. He has always been professional and ethical. Wonderful person to work with.
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Todd Letitia

I found Todd to be empathetic, understanding and receptive. He creates an environment where you can confide in someone without the fear of being judged.
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Todd Letitia

Todd Letitia is an amazing clinician. He is extremely easy to talk to and makes you feel welcomed from day one.
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Dr. Greg Handel

I have experienced Dr. Greg Handel to be a uniquely empathic and sensitive psychologist who brings clarity and hope for the challenges we face in our life journeys. The warmth and confidence that he exemplifies in his interactions distinguish him as a remarkable mental health clinician. All of these positive attributes contribute to the inspiration that allows one to believe that facing challenges and changes is doable. I may not like the thought of changes, but I can see them as less intimidating when reminded of my own strengths and capabilities. Dr. Handel reminds me that although I may need to sharpen them from time to time, I own these tools for success and joy in my life.
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Dr. Gregory Handel

Dr. Gregory Handel exemplifies the dignity and insight into human behavior that is required to provide caring and lasting help for others. His ability to listen and respond, to disstill often complex problems, and to offer a way forward is a welcome and refreshing approach. It can seem daunting today in our fast paced world to cut through the noise and listen to ourselves and our family and friends. Dr. Handel is someone I trust and I've always appreciated the feedback and support he provides.
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Dr. Handel – Exceptional Character

Dr. Gregory Handel is not only an exceptional psychologist but is an exceptional human being as well. Always going above and beyond to provide support, care, and love for those in need. This man exemplifies all the right qualities of a counselor, he is patient, listens intently, and is honest, always. No matter what struggle or conflict you may have endure or are enduring, Dr. Greg Handel will always do everything in his power to help you through it. Filled with compassion, empathy, and wisdom, there is no one in the therapeutic industry better qualified.
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    Franklin, MA 02038

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