The story thatreveals in the narrative featured below reads like a detective thriller.
How did the two Doctors solve a problem so much bigger than what they set out to study?
When I found her ‘story behind the story’ about the two doctors – Felitti and Anda – who collaborated to make such a breakthrough, it served as a great platform. On it I could work out the differences between ACE focused research organizations, adults living with ACEs, the organizations that counsel parents and children using a Trauma Aware (also known as ‘ACE informed’) point of view, the Foundations and Agencies which support the work of all of the above, and ever so much more.
And as I come to grips with the breadth of the overall field of ACEs, now the work of Doctor Vincent Felitti and Doctor Robert Anda seems to me to be at least as significant a breakthrough in understanding human behavior as the discoveries made by Pasteur were to become in understanding human disease.
Now that vague term ‘dysfunctional family’ which came out of nowhere to became embedded in the popular psyche in the late 1980’s and early 90’s has firmly entered the realm of science. And the science became very, very personal to me.
As my decades relying on the 12 steps had gone by in AA and ACA, I had come to wonder if my behaviors would ever be understood with real clarity, even by me. I’d had some astonishing experience of the spiritual realm and I’d been blessed with a growing ability to forgive. Compassion warmed the coldness that was my lot as a younger adult, and the amazing turns of my thinking were already beyond enumeration.
But in my heart of hearts, I’ve always admired the scientific method and its discoveries at least as much as transcendence through the ineffable.
So it was inevitable that over time I’d begun to wonder ‘where is the hard science of alcoholism and child abuse?’
Driven by that gnawing question, I was quite eager to look into Kaiser’s ‘Adverse Childhood Experience’ or ACE studies when I was told of them in 2013 or so. But at first what I found seemed sketchy and incomplete, even with using the web for research. There were, however, encouraging bits about the massive size and long duration of the studies, seemingly enough to make their most startling conclusions bullet proof.
More recently I used Google yet again, perhaps with better queries and for sure with some good luck. It seems there is an abundance of information, and in fact what I’ve gone through is in fact what a majority of others in the US (and almost certainly throughout the rest of the world too) have in fact gone through too.
Yet it was only upon discovering and reading (and re-reading several times) this story that I could put the rest of what I’ve been discovering into a meaningful whole.
I wish you a similar outcome in deepening your understanding of the grit of these two doctors and the bright future they are bringing into view.
And we continue to recover……