Current research indicates that youth all across America are increasingly at risk for a variety of social disorders including drug and alcohol abuse, eating disorders, behavioral problems, learning disabilities, severe depression, suicidal behavior, violent behavior, criminal behavior, and more. In addition to the serious psychological and behavioral issues just mentioned, young people are also at risk for reproductive challenges such as prepubescent menstrual cycles, premature sexual activity, unwanted teen pregnancy, single or repeated abortions, single parenthood, and/or giving birth to an unwanted child.
A growing body of research in the field or pre- and perinatal psychology is now suggesting that this current cultural crisis may have its roots in unresolved trauma that our young may have experienced while in the womb, during birth, or during the immediate post-natal period of their lives. Western society has paid very little attention to the importance of the birth experience and the first nine months in the womb, and we have seriously underestimated the impact of pre- and perinatal trauma on the psyches of our young. As a result, our youth are suffering tremendously and are having difficulty leading joyful, healthy lives.
Much to our misfortune, there is not a single school (that I am aware of) in the whole of the United States or elsewhere that has taken on the responsibility of teaching young adults about the principles of conscious procreation and parenting. Although “sex education” has made its way into high school classrooms, truly meaningful discussions about the spiritual implications of haphazard sexual behavior, and/or about the importance of conceiving babies consciously, gestating them in loving and trauma-free wombs, birthing them gently, and parenting them consciously, are sadly absent.
As a result, millions (perhaps billions) of children are being conceived haphazardly and then gestated in wombs filled with fear, shame, and resentment. This difficult beginning (if it doesn’t end in abortion) is often followed by a birth experience that is filled with trauma and toxicity.
According to a study done by William Emerson (expert in pre- and perinatal psychology and pioneer in the field of birth trauma healing), 95% of American hospital births are considered traumatic, with 50% of these being rated as moderately traumatic, and 45% being rated as severely traumatic. Early trauma has been shown to affect the development of the fetal and infant brain, nervous system, neuro-chemistry, organs, physiology, psychology, and consciousness. Early traumatic memories leave imprints that are stored somatically and, although these memories may not be available to the conscious mind, they nevertheless influence all aspects of health and personality.
Traumatic imprints create psychological and behavioral patterns that tend to repeat themselves throughout life. For example, fetuses that are gestated in wombs where mother and father are not in a loving relationship may carry an imprint of dysfunctional relating that can manifest and seek resolution during adolescence and adulthood. The imprint can effectively cause a maturing adult to repetitively enter into unfulfilling and/or abusive relationships as he or she recreates the conditions of his/her early wounding in an attempt to achieve a different outcome. Unless human beings become conscious of the primal wounding that is generating their behavior (which is often inter-generational), and unless they find ways to come to resolution, the patterns are likely to recapitulate and get passed on to the next generation.
Early traumatic womb experiences can include, but are not limited to:
– being in a womb where one is not wanted and/or where thoughts of abortion are contemplated
– being in a womb where the mother is experiencing deep emotional pain or chronic depression (the fetus is swimming in the hormonal/neurochemical make-up of its mother)
– being the product of a loveless sexual experience
– being in a womb that is filled with stress hormones due to the stress that parents (especially our mother’s) are under
– being exposed to toxic substances such as alcohol, nicotine, and illegal and prescription drugs while in the womb, at birth, or during the first two years of life
– being exposed to domestic violence or violence of any kind before, during, or after birth
– being abandoned by one or both parents
All of the above experiences (and this is a very small sampling) can, and most often do, result in the underdevelopment of the human brain and the over-adrenalization of the nervous system. Biological deficiencies and traumatic compensations tend to compound over time and can lead to an adolescent and/or adult that has difficulty generating healthy behavior, satisfying relationships, and a joyful life.
It is for this reason that it is imperative to offer an educational youth program that will raise awareness of the social conditions that are perpetuating this dis-ease and offer tools that will help our youth put an end to the lineage of abuse, maltreatment, and dysfunction.
The program described below is geared toward youth and young adults between the ages of 13 and 30. It is designed to help change the way young people think about relationships, sexuality, pregnancy, birth, and parenting. It is also designed to provide youth with tools and knowledge that will help them heal their past and create a better future.
The curriculum outlined below encourages young people to understand the social implications of irresponsible sexual activity, thereby encouraging them to be in absolute integrity with their sexual behavior. Each class will stress the importance of being truly ready to bring forth life before becoming sexually active and, once this readiness is established, to seek a stable, committed, loving relationship (and home) before conceiving a child.
The curriculum is further designed to educate youth about the types of trauma that can occur during conception, prenatal life, at birth, and during the first two years of life. This information has a variety of benefits including:
– helping youth become conscious of any trauma they, themselves, may have experienced in their own early life, thereby starting the process of conscious resolution;
– providing them with tools they can use to heal their own damaging imprints;
– helping youth understand the implications of irresponsible sexual behavior and haphazard conception;
– providing them with a moral incentive to make sure the important pieces are in place BEFORE they become sexually active and/or become pregnant and have a child.
Emphasis will be placed on their capacity to make responsible choices, encouraging them to maintain a drug and alcohol-free environment at all times and trusting that, if they do choose to become pregnant after this program, they will have enough information to create the best possible circumstances for themselves and their babies.
The program consists of a 20-week intensive lecture, film, and experiential series that will utilize a combination of classroom-like discussions, auditory and visual aids, and on-going focus-group interactions, as outlined below. …
Intergenerational repetition of child-rearing behaviors is responsible for the long-term stability of the culture we live in. Being conscious of these processes and how we perpetuate them is the first step toward positive social evolution. We are always only one generation away from truly being at home on mother earth.