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The Place We Find Ourselves

English, Religion, 8 seasons, 156 episodes, 3 days, 21 hours, 52 minutes
The Place We Find Ourselves podcast features private practice therapist Adam Young (LCSW, MDiv) and interview guests as they discuss all things related to story, trauma, attachment, and interpersonal neurobiology. Listen in as Adam unpacks how trauma and abuse impact the heart and mind, as well as how to navigate the path toward healing, wholeness, and restoration. Interview episodes give you a sacred glimpse into the real-life stories of guests who have engaged their own experiences of trauma and abuse. Drawing from the work of neuroscientists such as Allan Schore, Dan Siegel, and Bessel van der Kolk, as well as psychologist Dan Allender, this podcast will equip and inspire you to engage your own stories of harm in deep, transformative ways.
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157 What If My Story Isn’t That Bad? Why We All Tend to Minimize Our Wounds

This episode is for people who experience emotional pain but feel like “nothing that bad happened to me growing up. I had a pretty good childhood.” As it says in Jeremiah 6, it is very common to dress our wounds as though they are not serious. One way we tend to minimize our wounds is by comparing our story to someone else who “had it worse.” Another way we minimize our wounds is by spiritualizing away the harmful experiences we endured with sentences like, “God used that terrible experience to shape my character.” What is keeping you from having compassion for the harm you experienced as a boy or a girl? If the podcast has been helpful to you, please consider supporting it financially here.
6/17/202429 minutes, 24 seconds
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156 Five Objections to Engaging Your Story: A Response

When I began exploring my story, five objections kept coming up for me. These objections kept me stuck. In today’s episode, I respond to each of the five objections. Objection 1: I should focus on the present and the future, not "dwell on the past.” Objection 2: Looking at my story is self-indulgent, introspective navel gazing; I should be focused on God and others rather than focused on myself. Objection 3: Who am I to judge my parents? Jesus says "do not judge.” Besides, I don't want to blame my parents. Objection 4: There's no point in looking at how my parents hurt me because they did the best they could. Objection 5: I can't change what's already happened, so what's the point of looking at the past?
6/3/202440 minutes, 35 seconds
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155 Why Engaging Your Story Heals Your Brain

My invitation to you today is simple: to take your story seriously. Engaging your story is the single most important thing you can do to experience healing. When I say "your story," I'm talking more about the individual scenes than the overarching narrative of your life. Your stories—particularly your stories of heartache or harm—have shaped your brain more than anything else. Which means that your past stories are shaping your present life more than you may realize. To support the podcast financially, click here. 
5/20/202439 minutes, 34 seconds
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154 What Grief Is, How It Heals, and the Pain of Loneliness with J.S. Park

In “As Long As You Need,” author J.S. Park writes that “Grief is not about letting go, but about letting in.” Letting in sorrow, letting in anger, and especially letting in other people who can be WITH us in our pain. This episode is about all kinds of grief—not merely the grief of losing a loved one. One of Joon Park’s main points is that we often experience loneliness in the midst of our sorrow and pain. He says, “It is possible to be in a room full of people, but feel more lonely than if the room had been empty. It is to be unseen. Unseen by those close to you is in some ways worse than having no one see you.” 
5/7/202445 minutes, 35 seconds
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153 How Your Past Story Affects Your Present Sexuality with Jay Stringer

I am joined today by author Jay Stringer to talk about sexual stuckness/difficulties/pain. Healthy sexuality is deeply tied to the degree to which we have made sense of our story in our family of origin. Sadly, so few of us have ever been asked to connect the dots between our past life story and the sexual difficulties we face in the present. Today, Jay and I try to connect some of those dots. If you want to understand your sexual story in more depth, please sign up for The Sexual Attachment Conference on May 4th. We want to help you understand and transform some of the unique sexual difficulties you may be experiencing either individually or as a couple. 
3/30/202450 minutes, 28 seconds
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152 Learning To Live Inside Your Body with Dr. Hillary McBride

I am joined today by Dr. Hillary McBride to discuss excerpts from her new book titled, “Practices for Embodied Living.” Topics covered include: how to feel your feelings, being alive in your body (eroticism), and the story of your relationship to your sensuality and sexuality. Finally, I ask Hillary about her beautiful claim that we often find the Holy precisely in the places we were told not to look (including in our bodies).  
2/21/202439 minutes, 22 seconds
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151 What To Do With Desire and Dread with Mike Boland

Pastor and counselor Mike Boland shares a story from when he was 15 years old. It’s a story about the interplay of longing for connection and, at the same time, dreading what will be required of him in return. We talk about grooming, and the war of ambivalence that rages in one’s body in the midst of abuse. You can find out more about Mike’s work at
1/31/202441 minutes, 2 seconds
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150 Trauma Heals By Connecting With Others

The opposite of trauma is not "no trauma;" the opposite of trauma is connection. To be human is to be wounded. However, wounds heal naturally when the environment is right… and the right environment for healing is the empathic presence of another person. God made our brains and nervous systems to need one another. This is particularly true when it comes to engaging your story. You cannot engage your story alone. Sitting in your favorite chair with a journal, a Bible, a cup of coffee, and a good view out your window is not sufficient to heal your wounds. But the attuned presence of another human being can change your brain. 
1/8/202435 minutes, 12 seconds
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149 Why Listening To Your Body Leads To Healing Part 2

Today I focus on two important ways that your body tells you things. The first is through your affect. Whenever your affect becomes dysregulated, your body is letting you know valuable information about your present environment… and about your past story. Dysregulation makes implicit memory known. And the second way that your body communicates with you is through impulses. Your body has impulses… impulses that it would like you to take more seriously than you probably do. Support the podcast.
12/25/202330 minutes, 25 seconds
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148 The Healing Power of Understanding Your Story with Dan Allender and Cathy Loerzel

You have a story and that story matters. Your story in your family of origin significantly affects the way you think, feel, and act in the world today. This is why Dan Allender says, “It is time to listen to your story.” What if healing begins by listening to your story? By reflecting on—and engaging—the experiences in your growing up years, you can better understand why your brain has been shaped in the way that it has. These are the topics that Dan, Cathy, and I explore in today’s episode. If you want to experience more of the healing power of understanding your own story, join the three of us in Atlanta, GA, on Saturday February 3, 2024, for the StoryWork Conference. The conference will be live streamed if you can’t make it to Atlanta. You can register by going to CEU’s are available for therapists. 
12/11/202339 minutes
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147 Why Listening To Your Body Leads To Healing Part 1

Your body knows things that your enskulled brain does not. Moreover, if you listen, your body will tell you important things—things that will help you heal. Your body is a truth teller. It is the trustworthy prophet from within. In today’s episode, I explain why it’s so important to listen to your body… and how to do it.  Support the show
11/27/202332 minutes, 53 seconds
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146 Triangulation and Misguided Hope with Matthias Roberts

Friend and fellow therapist Matthias Roberts joins me today to share a very vulnerable story involving triangulation with his mother. How does an adolescent boy answer his Mom’s questions about his homosexuality when Mom is disgusted by it? This is a story about Matthias’ deep love for God… and the torment he felt as a result. We talk about Matthias’ immense hope that God would “heal” his sexuality and how he came to feel God’s blessing rather than shame. Support the podcast
11/13/202336 minutes, 30 seconds
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145 How Loneliness Affects The Heart and Mind

Therapist and fellow podcaster Vanessa Sadler shares a story from when she was 11 years old. As children, all of us needed to belong—to feel “a part of.” If we did not receive sufficient attunement from our primary caregivers, we likely experienced high levels of loneliness. The dilemma is that it may not have felt like loneliness because it was such a normal part of your life. Vanessa talks candidly about her loneliness growing up, as well as how she came to experience significant healing from that loneliness. You can follow Vanessa on Instagram @abidinginstory. Support the show
10/30/202340 minutes, 1 second
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144 Embodied Sexuality and Religious/Sexual Trauma with Jenny McGrath

I am joined today by therapist Jenny McGrath who is passionate about helping people heal from the damage of purity culture. One byproduct of purity culture is a disconnection from your body and a distrust of your body. If you feel shame about your body, or especially shame about your sexuality, this episode will hopefully help you. For those who want to dive deeper into these things, please consider signing up for Jenny’s Embodied Sexuality course. You can use coupon code “PLACEWEFIND” to save $60 off the cost of the course.  Support the podcast
10/16/202334 minutes, 35 seconds
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143 Finding Home Again After Religious Trauma with Matthias Roberts

Matthias Roberts joins me today to talk about his book Holy Runaways: Rediscovering Faith After Being Burned By Religion. Topics covered include: why belonging is so crucial for each of us, how to trust when you’ve been betrayed by others so many times before, and why it’s hard to open ourselves to actually receive care when it is available. 
10/9/202337 minutes, 54 seconds
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142 Healing From Trauma: The Power of “Being With” Part 2

We pick up with Curt sharing about Cora’s experience in a story group. Specifically, we talk about about why Cora’s intense bouts of panic were her body’s way of saying “something is wrong and needs care and attention.” We also talk about a woman named Cheyney who experiences deep healing as a result of taking in the acceptance and embrace of other group members in the precise moment when she is feeling intense shame. This is how neural networks get rewired. This is how healing happens. We need other people.
9/18/202323 minutes, 51 seconds
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141 Healing From Trauma: The Power of “Being With” Part 1

Curt Thompson returns to the podcast to talk about how we heal from trauma. In short, trauma and emotional pain begin to heal when our stories are witnessed by an empathetic other. Curt shares a story from his newest book about a woman named Cora, who is disconnected from her emotions and finds it very hard to receive care from Curt. Curt’s newest book about suffering and healing is called The Deepest Place. 
9/4/202333 minutes, 30 seconds