On trauma (The Sinner, Netflix)

I put a note out to friends asking for feel good drama on film because I was so tired of all the crazy violence and general ugliness in most TV and film. Funny thing though,  I ended up, quite accidentally watching something that might be understood as quite the opposite.

What I just finished was,  “The Sinner” (Netflix) …a deep and disturbing and profoundly beautiful filmed series about heinous ongoing trauma and how it played out for this particular woman.  This, of course, would not be considered feel good for most people and in fact I was making a joke, yet….  I can only say that I felt seen. Trauma is ugly and invisible and few people can imagine it if they’ve not lived it…the details hardly matter if you’ve gone through something ugly enough…and so they didn’t as I watched this film. I felt seen.

There are people in the world that awaken as a result of trauma and they know. We can see one another.

That was enough to make this film feel very good. The truth is there are many of us…so many…let us all come out of the dark together and make it stop. As long as we’re not allowed to be who we are it continues. As long as we are afraid, it continues. As long as we are pathologized and called mentally ill, it continues.

Together, in numbers we are strong. Let us be who we are. Life is not always a bowl of cherries and it’s okay. Society want’s to pretend that we don’t exist and that trauma is some sort of anomaly. The truth is it’s common and even normal. When we own our despair, allow it, feel it and let it move we heal and we help others heal too.

We are okay and it wasn’t our fault. There is nothing wrong with us.

Our being gravely uncomfortable in the face of what is happening all over the planet is a sign of being aware, not illness:

It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. — Jiddu Krishnamurti

**  I by no means recommend the above film to everyone who’s been traumatized. I’ve been working very consciously with my trauma for many years. This film might be triggering for folks at other junctures of their healing journey.  It’s simply what I needed right now in these last few days. It was perfect for me in this moment and that is all I can say about it. There is much film that I found helpful some years ago that now grates on my nerves or I find distressing in some way. Always trust your own somatic guidance for what is appropriate for you right now. 


Comments: Sharing your experience is welcome. Advice, on the other hand, is not. If you have some burning advice to give please share it somewhere else. In the circles I engage and flow in we exchange our experience because we never know what is right for someone else. In this way we learn from one another and can, without pressure, take or leave whatever we hear while listening and loving and respecting the complexity and differences of others and ourselves.  I will shut them down when I get tired which may or may not have anything to do with their content. I have a lot of things to tend to in my life and I’m practicing balance.***


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11 thoughts on “On trauma (The Sinner, Netflix)

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  1. Monica, so good to read your insights. Boy, I am glad you are better. It was really painful to read of your relapse. Thank God you are better now.

    It’s been a little over a year since I began my blog and that Mother’s Day I was really down in the dumps still grieving for my mother. You sent me mail validating my pain and loss. Oh. it meant so much, pulled me out of my dark hole. Sometimes it is the small acts of kindness and caring which truly heal us. I have come a long way and feel much, much better. Thank you for your wonderful sharing and insights. Your site is a real treasure trove of wisdom.

    1. Glad you’re out of the dark hole…I’m sorry, but I’m not well… …I’ve improved since the ICU stay in that my hyperthyroid came down finally but I’m still very sick and largely homebound right now…I mentioned that all sort of other things cropped up…I meant it…it’s pretty nightmarish, really. . I don’t expect to get well anymore actually. My body is broken…two major brain injuries…I’m working on being kind to myself and my body by loving it as it is now. Still it’s very frustrating and painful and there is a mourning and grieving process that continues…I once thought I’d be able to do things I now understand are all very unlikely.

  2. Hi Monica. I sometimes feel the need to share your posts on social media but im not sure if that is appropriate to do or not. Finding beyond meds really helped me to get off all psychiatric medications so it is a very relevant topic for me to be sharing posts about. I just wanted to ask you if that is okay.
    Kind regards,

    1. hi Tash, it’s very kind of you to ask and the fact is this site is in the public domain and the share buttons are at the bottom of each post…share as you see fit. The information is made available for exactly that thank you. (you may be sensing that since I now stay out of the public eye as much as possible that I have some hesitation and you’re right…so I greatly appreciate your sensitivity. Thing is the cat got out of that bag a long time ago and ambivalence doesn’t change the reality that this information belongs to every one of us. It’s not mine…)

    1. exactly…though in this instance it’s a different sort of trauma (in that details don’t matter, as I said) and it’s treated with great sensitivity…also several different characters are highly relatable in different ways…the main characters sister and the detective both are characters who have also experienced different traumas that help understand trauma in general (if one has the eye for it)

      1. Sounds very interesting indeed. I think you would like the film ‘Daphne’ by the Scottish director Peter Mackie Burns, it deals with trauma and other stuff in a different way, more trauma as revelation, a character study, great film- you can catch it free on Putlocker I think. It’s very very good.

        1. thanks. this one isn’t explicitly about trauma on the surface…it’s about an unexplained murder…and then one needs the eye to know what they’re experiencing largely…it’s well done drama…

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