How culture impacts trauma

Travis Knowlton LCSW
3 min readFeb 13, 2024
Xiao Cui via unspalsh

Culture significantly influences the experience, perception, and response to psychological trauma. Here's how:

Expression of Trauma: Cultural norms and values shape how individuals express or communicate their trauma. Some cultures encourage open expression, while others may emphasize restraint or silence regarding distressing experiences.

Meaning Making: Cultural beliefs and traditions influence how individuals make sense of trauma. This includes attributing meaning, seeking support from spiritual beliefs, or using cultural practices for healing.

Stigma and Support: Cultural attitudes towards mental health and trauma affect seeking help. Stigma related to mental health issues might prevent individuals from seeking support or treatment.

Social Support: Cultural communities and networks play a crucial role in providing support to those who've experienced trauma. The availability and acceptance of social support can vary across cultures.

Cultural Healing Practices: Different cultures have unique healing practices, rituals, or traditions that contribute to coping and recovery from trauma. These can include ceremonies, storytelling, or spiritual practices.



Travis Knowlton LCSW

I'm a husband, father, veteran, and licensed clinical social worker that is here to enjoy and share!