3 Ways to Respond to a Sexual Assault Disclosure

Sexual assault is dreadfully common – so common that many of us are likely to hear disclosures from people we know. Indeed, when survivors do disclose, it’s often to friends, family, or other informal support people.  How we respond to sexual assault disclosure matters – sometimes for the worse. Unfortunately, there are many unhelpful and even hurtful ways toContinue reading “3 Ways to Respond to a Sexual Assault Disclosure”

Where Research Meets Denim This April

Sexual Assault Awareness Month (#SAAM) comes around each April, offering a chance for us to transform increased attention to sexual assault into collaborative action for change. This year, the Traumatic Stress Studies Group is participating in #SAAM by getting the word out about sexual assault research on Prevalence (Week 1), Common Reactions to Disclosures (WeekContinue reading “Where Research Meets Denim This April”

A Rideshare on the Road to Change

The four of us left the restaurant together, having celebrated a friend’s birthday. Laughing and carrying on, we made our way to the Lyft that idled across the street. A woman smiled warmly at us from the driver’s seat. As she drove us through Portland’s nighttime streets, our banter turned to the kinds of conversationsContinue reading “A Rideshare on the Road to Change”

3 Ways to Take Action to End Sexual Assault

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month. February is Teen Dating Violence Awareness and Prevention Month. August ushers in college orientations and sexual assault prevention programming. These cyclical events bring bursts of attention to sexual violence in its many forms. Increasing attention to and awareness of the scope of the problem of sexual assault is important for many reasons. For instance, talking openly about sexualContinue reading “3 Ways to Take Action to End Sexual Assault”

Legal, Legal, Legal: A Tool for Screening Legal Needs

“She failed to legal legal, which is legally legal, per legal.” That’s how a rapid-fire exchange between a magistrate and lawyer sounds to Alex, the protagonist in Netflix’s hit series Maid. In this particular episode, Alex appears at a custody hearing wearing clothes borrowed from the woman staying one floor above her at a domesticContinue reading “Legal, Legal, Legal: A Tool for Screening Legal Needs”

Since You’re Here: From Impostor to Action

I’ve always tended towards anxious thoughts. They hit a particularly fevered pitch in my first year of graduate school, many moons ago. I’d just uprooted and moved from the east coast to Oregon to join a dozen first year graduate students at the University of Oregon. Each of them seemed better prepared, smarter, more [fillContinue reading “Since You’re Here: From Impostor to Action”

Connecting Trauma-Informed to Community-Engaged

In the years before #MeToo exploded into public awareness, conversations about trauma and its impact on schools and other institutions were growing under the banner of becoming trauma-informed. Trauma-informed principles such as those outlined by Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration offered new ways to think about institutional policies and practices that recognize andContinue reading “Connecting Trauma-Informed to Community-Engaged”

Three Friends, Two Strangers, One Smashed Phone, and a Purple Balloon: A NYE Story

I don’t recall rain, which seems strange for December 31st in downtown Seattle. We had only a few hours to go until we said goodbye to a dreadful year. A year in which the dot-com crash wreaked havoc in the Seattle economy and evening news reports described businesses dumping their no-longer-needed office furniture in desolateContinue reading “Three Friends, Two Strangers, One Smashed Phone, and a Purple Balloon: A NYE Story”

Wishing you Creature Comfort this New Year

A few years back, I heard Tarana Burke speak at a Blue Bench event in Denver. In fielding questions about how she has navigated a high profile career addressing sexual assault and trauma, she spoke of curating joy in her life. I think of her phrase – curating joy – often. Growing up professionally inContinue reading “Wishing you Creature Comfort this New Year”

Welcoming a New Team Member!

One of the best parts of fall — beyond even this year’s amazing leaves — is welcoming new members to our team. This fall, I’m delighted to welcome Courtney McCrimmon, a first-year doctoral student in the Department of Psychology’s clinical program. Courtney joins returning graduate team members Maria-Ernestina Christl, Kim-Chi Pham, Adi Rosenthal, and BeckyContinue reading “Welcoming a New Team Member!”