Note: The field of trauma and trauma-informed care, and trauma-informed practice is constantly evolving and expanding. This information in this chapter is intended to give judges a basic understanding of the topic to help manage child protection cases in a trauma-informed manner. The Texas child welfare system is moving to adopt a formal trauma-informed approach and definitions and this chapter will be updated in 2019 to reflect this progress and new findings in the field.

A traumatic experience is an event that threatens someone’s life, safety, or well-being and overwhelms one’s capacity to cope. Some examples include: