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COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL 2. Early Traumatic Stress Every person experiences a range of stressful events, thoughts, and emotions throughout life. A stress-causing experience can be a difficult job, a dying family member, or the act of crossing a busy street. Each of these events can cause some level of stress that the body and mind will respond to. As discussed in chapter 1, the strength and style of a person’s attachment relationships can greatly influence that person’s responses to everyday stressors and her willing- ness to brave, explore, and learn from new or stressful experiences. There is hardly a child alive who has not learned the world can be dangerous and hostile. Here in the United States, words and images of violence per- vade children’s recreation, entertainment, neighborhoods, and, for some, homes. Ideally, children who experience stressful events will have safe, nurturing relationships with adults who can help them process those stressful events appropriately, but this doesn’t always happen. Sometimes a child’s experience of a stressful event is far greater than her capability, and the capabilities of available adults, to help process the event. A first-grade boy was unable to stay in his seat, which was in the row of desks next to the first-floor windows of his classroom. His teacher repeatedly called upon him to return to his seat and was getting frustrated. COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL 17