The Hippies Were Right: Healing Trauma With Yoga

Tuesday, September 27, 2016 by Meg   •   Filed under Treatment Techniques

Post-traumatic stress disorder can come with difficult symptoms, many of them physical. Some people with a history of trauma have a constant heaviness in the chest, some have muscle tension or pain. Others experience continuous feelings of helplessness, hopelessness or flashbacks. Most have some difficulty regulating their emotions and may suffer from distorted body image or difficulties in personal relationships. Still others numb emotions with substances , rely on distractions like high-risk behaviors or use self injury to ward off the internal pain with an external distraction (read more on the symptoms of trauma in The Evolution of PTSD).

But some feel far less due to self protection in the form of dissociation or disconnection, some detaching so cleanly that they may have to look at their arm to know it’s moving at all. But this disconnection from body and emotion is usually imperfect, with individuals experiencing breakthrough symptoms at unexpected times, suddenly panicking at a particular noise or freezing mid conversation. Childhood trauma in particular often hides until a later date when the individual is more able to handle the discomfort, leading some to wonder, “I didn’t feel this bad then! Why is this happening now?” 

Congratulations, you’re healing. It feels shitty but it means your brain and your body are finally dealing with what happened. You are no longer fully disconnected. And you now have a chance to take back your body....  continue reading

Conviction runs deep. Courage runs deeper.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016 by Meg   •   Filed under Books


Conviction, number two in the Ash Park series, is available now. Get a print copy for your bookshelf to sit right beside Famished. Click here to check out my creeepy-cool book trailer. Then review it on Amazon HERE. Your reviews and may be the deciding factor in whether others pick up any of my novels. You're powerful. You're bad ass. And if you need review ideas, here are a few of the already awesome reviews on Conviction

"A white-knuckled thrill ride from first page to last." ~Andra Watkins, NYT bestselling author of Not Without My Father

"Addictive and consuming, O'Flynn will have you chewing your nails off until the very end." ~Kristen Mae, Beyond the Break

"Conviction will have you jumping at shadows and leave you hungry for more." ~Mary Widdicks, The Mermaid Asylum

From the back cover:

CONVICTION

Conviction means nothing when you’re dead wrong. 

Shannon Taylor takes no prisoners—save the ones she tosses into lockup. Between convicting criminals as an Ash Park district attorney, dealing with her jerk ex-husband (who also happens to be her boss), and caring for her dying brother, Shannon is already stretched thin. So she’s less than thrilled when new evidence from a closed case emerges—evidence suggesting she threw a young mother in jail for a murder she didn’t commit. 

Shannon knows the girl is hiding something. But whatever the secret, it is even more compelling than the hope of freedom—the girl won’t talk.

When Shannon becomes the target of a series of cryptic and bloody warnings, she must find a way to protect everyone she holds dear. Will her persistence free an innocent woman? Or will her pursuit of the truth turn her family into helpless targets in a madman’s game? 

Conviction runs deep. Courage runs deeper. And nothing in Ash Park is as it seems....  continue reading

Reliving the Past: How to Get Rid of Unwanted Fantasies

Tuesday, August 23, 2016 by Meg   •   Filed under Sexuality/Relationships

After the San Francisco earthquake of 1989, child care centers across the country noted the emergence of a game called “earthquake,” where children, without provocation, acted out an earthquake scene over and over again, processing the trauma in such a way as to be powerful at the end1.  This is an example of an automatic, impulsive fantasy reenactment, an obvious response to one event that needed to be dealt with. 

But we are more complicated than that in most other areas. Sexual fantasies can run the gamut from “Hey, Baby,” to, “Oh dear, god, why the fuck am I thinking about that!?” because of their tendency to be representative as opposed to literal. For example, donkey fantasies are usually more about..ahem…size and not having to worry about a parter as opposed to wanting to fuck an actual donkey. As a general rule, fantasies may increase pleasure, or on the flip side represent certain unresolved elements of our pasts, functioning to desensitize us to traumas, or helping us to overcome guilt or shame (discussed more here in Whips Chains and Penises, OH MY! Fantasy and the Feminist Argument for Bondage).

But if you are convinced that the fantasies are literal (and sometimes if you aren’t), they can freak you out and become like intrusive thought patterns, an obsession more than a desire, the fear of the thoughts as well as their link to past pleasure driving them to continue, much like what initially happened to Hazel in the book Beyond the Break.

So what to do if a distressing fantasy keeps coming up?...  continue reading

How Safe Is Your Job? Why Self-Control Matters For Physical and Mental Health

Tuesday, August 09, 2016 by Meg   •   Filed under General


The loss of control can do more than make you super pissed-off, particularly for those of us more inclined to buck assimilation. 

Me? Combative? Seriously, that's not a fucking surprise, is it?

But according to choice researcher Dr. Sheena Iyengar, author of, The Art of Choosing, lack of choice may trigger physical health problems as opposed to purely emotional ones1....  continue reading

This Post Is About A Baby. And Donald Trump. Also, Narcissism.

Thursday, August 04, 2016 by Meg   •   Filed under General

I tried to stay away from all the politics, I really did. But this post isn’t really about politics. It’s not about Hillary’s emails. Or Trump’s tax returns or pending racketeering investigations. It’s not about possible relationships with Putin or even policy on either side of the aisle.

This is about a baby. 

This week, we’ve all seen Trump during a speech where he has a woman with a crying baby removed from the venue. The baby video in an of itself seems innocuous on the outside. Sure, Trump has proven himself to be the epitome of the Cards Against Humanity showstopper “Being a dick to children” but whatever. Not everyone likes kids. Probably next to no one enjoys children when they’re trying to give a speech.

But what I saw was far from an innocuous. What I saw was sickness....  continue reading

Can Alcohol Cause Traumatic Responses? The Two-Way Street Between Alcohol and PTSD

Tuesday, July 26, 2016 by Meg   •   Filed under Trauma


In people ages eighteen and older, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) occurs in about three and a half percent of the population in any given year1. PTSD is common following situations that involve threatened death or serious injury, such as robbery or rape, an earthquake or a car accident.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder leads many to feel out of control. The symptoms may be so overwhelming some turn to the use of substances in an effort to calm themselves. However, there is a great deal of evidence to suggest that alcohol not only exacerbates the symptoms of PTSD, but also increases the likelihood of getting PTSD in the first place....  continue reading