Trauma, Identity, and the Workplace

Individuals who have experienced trauma, especially interpersonal trauma, may face significant barriers to career and workplace success. These difficulties may range from specific cognitive challenges, such as maintaining concentration on work-related tasks and managing commitments and deadlines, to emotional and relational issues such as general irritability or difficulty regulating affect around coworkers or, perhaps especially, supervisors. Individuals with active, diag-nosable, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are managing a significant illness that can require active support from health care providers, and the need to take time away from work. However, researchers and practitioners also recognize that experiences of childhood maltreatment and trauma, instances of domestic violence or criminal victimization, and significant noninterpersonal trauma (such as that which follows a life-threatening illness or natural disaster) can limit or ...

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