About

Hi. I’m Heather. I am a trauma-informed coach, support group facilitator, writer, entrepreneur, and partner to an individual with complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Seven years I found myself navigating uncharted and frightening territory when my husband of twenty years began to experience visual flashbacks of an abusive childhood. The fallout of these emerging memories was devastating as I witnessed my functional husband deteriorate in a matter of months.

Prior to this, I had never heard of complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, developmental trauma, or trauma-informed. I did not know about dissociation, attachment, or the way trauma is stored in the brain and body. The understanding of psychology and anatomy and physiology came from a few university courses.

All that changed when we plunged headlong into a world called complex trauma. With few local resources for my husband and no support for myself, I began a quest to find answers. That arduous journey brought me here to this website, to my writing, to the creation of partner supports, and of course, to you.

Originally, I began blogging in a general way about the lived experience of childhood trauma. In 2017, I turned my focus to the situation of partners as I could find very little written for those of us who care for survivors. I had never met another partner and I had no idea what the response would be.

It turns out there are many partners like me out there.

I have interacted with hundreds of partners who are desperately searching for understanding, resources, and support. Partners know they need support to weather the storms of complex PTSD, but sadly, there are usually not local supports available. More than one partner has told me:

I am so relieved to find your site. No one is talking about this.

What I Offer

  • Regular blog posts on topics related to partners and families of survivors.
  • A free resource guide.
  • Book for purchase.
  • Individual support sessions for partners and supporters.
  • Speaking as a guest on podcasts.
  • Teaching on topics related to supporting partners.
  • Consultation.

My Training

In the last three years, I have obtained certifications as a Trauma Recovery Coach and completed training with The Attachment and Trauma Treatment Centre for Healing, St Catharines, Ontario. I have also personally worked with Jane Clapp, trauma-informed embodied resilience expert and implement this personal work on nervous system regulation and resourcing into my coaching practice.

My undergraduate degree is from the University of Winnipeg and I am a graduate of the Humber College creative writing summer program (2018).

My Work

Support group facilitation

  • Founder: Facebook support group Partners to Survivors with complex PTSD (the group is at capacity).

Teaching and writing

  • Webinar: Supporting Partners of Trauma Survivors.
  • Webinar: Basic Trauma Neurobiology for Trauma Recovery Coaches.
  • Information about CPTSD for Families factsheet, Out of the Storm.
  • Trauma-Informed Definition List. Resource used by the Attachment & Trauma Treatment Centre for Healing.

Speaking

My volunteer work includes membership with the Developmental Trauma Action Alliance, Ontario, Canada.

Of course, none of this matters without my family, my friends, and my health. Away from the computer, I spend time outdoors running and engage in a regular yoga practice. I love to bake for my family. And I love exploring the beauty of the Niagara region of Canada where I make my home.

Website header photo: Ester Marie Doysabas on Unsplash