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  • Emotional Abuse in Early Life = Concentration Issues Later in Life

    Does a history of abuse before the age of 18 affect later capacity to concentrate and stay focused? According to a new study Veterans with a history of physical or sexual abuse or witnessing family violence before the age of 18 have a reduced ability to concentrate compared to Veterans who were not abused.

    The study, which appears in the Journal Brain and Behavior, revealed that this failure to concentrate was associated with abnormal connectivity in the brain, between the amygdala, a core region for emotion, and frontal areas that help maintain focus. Collectively, these findings offer a new perspective on the long-term impact of psychological trauma years, if not decades, after childhood.

    Researchers from BUSM and the Translational Research Center for TBI and Stress Disorders at the VA Boston Healthcare System compared two groups of young Veterans. One group had a history of early life abuse, while the other did not. Both groups performed a concentration test while their brain activity was measured. The group that experienced trauma prior to 18 had worse concentration and abnormal communication between “emotional” regions (amygdala) and “attentional” regions of the brain (prefrontal cortex).

    “Trauma during one’s youth may not just cause difficulties with emotions later in life but may also impact day-to-day functioning like driving, working, education and relationships due to brain changes that stem from the trauma,” explained senior author Michael Esterman, PhD, assistant professor of psychiatry at BUSM and associate director of the VA Boston Neuroimaging Center.  “Our results suggest that early psychological interventions could result in better cognitive abilities as an adult.”

    According to the researchers this study suggests that interpersonal abuse before 18 can have dramatic and long lasting effects on the development of the brain that is only now beginning to be understood. Methodologically, this study is part of an exciting new era for brain imaging, where complex, but reliable patterns of brain connections can give insight into individual differences in clinical characteristics and cognitive abilities.

    For the entire article, see here. 


Visiting Holbrook Indian School

Our kids, Loren and Diana, are ministering at Holbrook Indian School and we’re visiting them for a couple of weeks. I had the opportunity to speak to the Sophomore and Junior/Senior Bible Classes this morning about how to have a relationship with God. It was an …

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5 Ways to Teach Your Preschooler About Consent

An estimated 1 in 3 girls and 1 in 5 boys are sexually abused before the age of 18. In fact, the vast majority of reported sexual assaults in this country (approximately 70 percent) involve children who are 17 and younger. Child sexual abuse advocate, founder, and CEO …

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God’s 5 Favorite Words that Begin with “F” – #5 Freedom

No word resonates with us quite like freedom. Commercials tempt us with the idea that if we buy this car, use this shampoo, invest in this product, we will have freedom. William Wallace in Braveheart, yells the word with great passion. Politicians, businesses, and military …

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Are You Living With a Narcissist?

Is Your Partner a Narcissist? Checklist. Narcissists can be men or women.  When something goes wrong, does your partner blame everyone but himself or herself? Does your partner refuse to be accountable for his or her bad behavior? (For example, “You made me so mad that …

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God’s 5 Favorite Words that Begin with “F” – #4 Foolishness

Foolishness is one of God’s words beginning with “F.” Now you might say, “That’s not one of God’s words.” Well, Jesus used the word several times as a warning, “But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds …

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Monday Morning Reality Of The Resurrection Article

God’s 5 Favorite Words that begin with “F” – #3 Forever

Another word in scripture that begins with “F” is forever. There are over 400 references to this word. Psalms alone has 145. Many of them refer to God. He will be the King forever, His love endures forever, His throne will stand forever, and God …

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Teachers’ duty to report child abuse includes own home

Teachers and other professionals must report child abuse, even if they learn about it in a setting outside of work, including their own homes, the Washington State Court of Appeals said Tuesday. The court ruled in the case of a Bethel School District middle school …

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God’s 5 Favorite Words that begin with “F” – #2 FINISHED

This week, as I was thinking about the death of Christ on the cross, another word beginning with “F” came to mind. Jesus’ last words on the cross in John 19:30 were, “It is FINISHED.” The battle was won. The great work of redemption was accomplished. …

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April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month

Did you know? Every year more than 3.6 million referrals are made to child protection agencies involving more than 6.6 million children (a referral can include multiple children). The United States has one of the worst records among industrialized nations – losing on average between …

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