It is the psychological effects of trauma being transferred from one generation to another. Generational trauma may begin with a traumatic event affecting an individual, traumatic events affecting multiple family members, or collective trauma affecting larger community, cultural, racial, ethnic, or other groups/populations (historical trauma).
After the first generation of survivors experiences trauma, they are able to transfer their trauma to their children and further generations of offspring via complex post-traumatic stress disorder mechanisms. It can also show up in unhealthy relationship boundaries and families subconsciously learning unhealthy survival behaviors.
Generational Trauma is sometimes also referred to as intergenerational trauma, multigenerational trauma, and ancestral trauma,« Back to Glossary Index