Charna Cassell, LMFT

Center for Passionate Living



What is trauma?


Trauma is a word without a clear definition. What one person sees as a traumatic live event may not be categorized as traumatic to the next, but needless to say we all experience trauma at sometime in our life. Trauma can broadly be broken down into incidental and developmental trauma, while social trauma can intersect both.


Social trauma (link to full blog eventually on social trauma) is systemic oppression such as, racism, sexism, homophobia and homelessness.

Incidental trauma (link to full blog on incidental trauma) is a car accident, natural disaster, the loss of a loved one, being raped or surviving a war.

Developmental trauma (link to full blog on developmental trauma) is when the source of abuse or neglect starts at a younger age, is repeated and cumulative.  

It is believed that your response to a trauma, and lack of support during it, is more likely to determine whether there will be long-term effects from the experience. A body-centered view of trauma is any experience that is too overwhelming for your nervous system to handle.  You were not resourced enough, for a number of possible reasons, to complete the unmanageable energy through your body to resolve it. This energy got bound and stored in your connective tissue. It may not prevent you from functioning as an adult, but it may restrict the range of your self-expression or decrease your ability to feel pleasure emotionally and physically.


Let me help you unwind the effects of past trauma so you can live fully expressed in the present.


Why do two kids that grow up in the same chaotic home cope so differently? While part of it is how we came into this world, part of our in-born nature, there have been studies done that illuminate consistent qualities in people that tend towards resilience.


Resilience is our ability to adapt when our expectations of ourselves and situations is not met. According to Psychologist, Susan Kobasa, resilient people view difficult circumstances as something to overcome rather than be paralyzed by. They can see mistakes as a learning opportunity vs. an unbearable unknown. They feel empowered to face the situation and move forward instead of feel victimized by the conditions.


Our work together will introduce you to ways to build resilience through Aikido-based practices, meditation and bodywork. 


During the many years I spent as a sex educator at Good Vibrations, I received not only extensive sex education, but attained a high comfort level of speaking with clients about the mechanics of sexual acts as well as unspoken/unconscious desires. I’ve also developed a understanding that many times sex is a microcosm and what is showing up in the bedroom, many times runs over into other aspects of my clients lives. 


I support people around how they show up in all of their relationships not just sexual relationships. I teach them to listen to their whole body.

Contact Me

Charna Cassell, LMFT

Center for Passionate Living

7214 Sunkist Dr

Oakland, CA 94605

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© 2020 By Charna Cassell, LMFT. 

Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. MFC 51238.