Trauma Bond Assessment

Traumatic Stress Index
from The Betrayal Bond: Breaking Free of Exploitive Relationships
by Patrick Carnes Ph.D.

The following statements typify reactions trauma victims often have to child abuse. Please check those you believe apply to you. Although the statements are written in the present tense, if the statements have ever applied to your life, then place a check next to that item. Statements are considered false only if they have never been a part of your life. If in doubt, let your first reaction be your guide. Given these guidelines, place a check mark next to the statements you feel apply.

_____ 1. I have recurring memories of painful experiences.
_____ 2. I am unable to stop a harmful childhood pattern.
_____ 3. I sometimes obsess about people who have hurt me and are now gone.
_____ 4. I feel bad at times about myself because of shameful experiences I believe were my fault.
_____ 5. I am a risk taker.
_____ 6. At times, I have difficulty staying awake.
_____ 7. I sometimes feel separate from my body as a reaction to a flashback or memory.
_____ 8. I deny myself basic needs at times, like groceries, shoes, books, medical care, rent and heat.
_____ 9. I have distressing dreams about experiences.
_____10. I repeat painful experiences over and over.
_____11. I try to be understood by those who are incapable or don’t care for me.
_____12. I have suicidal thoughts.
_____13. I engage in high-risk behaviors.
_____14. I eat excessively to avoid problems.
_____15. I avoid thoughts or feelings associated with my trauma experiences.
_____16. I skip vacations because of lack of time or money.
_____17. I have periods of sleeplessness.
_____18. I try to re-create an early trauma experience.
_____19. I keep secrets for people who have hurt me.
_____20. I have attempted suicide.
_____21. I am sexual when frightened.
_____22. I drink to excess when life is too hard.
_____23. I avoid stories, parts of movies or reminders of early painful experiences.
_____24. I avoid sexual pleasure.
_____25. I sometimes feel like an old painful experience is happening now.
_____26. There is something destructive I do over and over from my early life.
_____27. I stayed in conflict with someone when I could have walked away.
_____28. I have suicidal thoughts.
_____29. I often feel sexual when I am lonely.
_____30. I use depressant drugs as a way to cope.
_____31. I am unable to recall important details of painful experiences.
_____32. I avoid doing “normal” activities because of fears I have.
_____33. I have sudden, vivid or distracting memories of painful experiences.
_____34. I attempt to stop activities I know are not helpful.
_____35. I go overboard to help people who have been destructive.
_____36. I often feel lonely and estranged from others because of painful experiences I have had.
_____37. I feel intensely sexual when violence occurs.
_____38. My procrastinating interferes with my life activities.
_____39. I sometimes withdraw or have no interest in important activities because of childhood experiences.
_____40. I will hoard money and not spend money on legitimate needs.
_____41. I am upset when there are reminders of abusive experiences like anniversaries, places or symbols.
_____42. I compulsively do things to others that were done to me as a young person.
_____43. I sometimes help those who continue to harm me.
_____44. I feel unable to experience certain emotions (love, happiness, sadness, etc.).
_____45. I feel sexual when degraded or used.
_____46. Sleep is a way for me to avoid life’s problems.
_____47. I have difficulty concentrating.
_____48. I have attempted diets repeatedly.
_____49. I have difficulty sleeping.
_____50. My relationships are the same story over and over.
_____51. I feel loyal to people even though they have betrayed me.
_____52. I have a dim outlook on my future.
_____53. I feel sexual when someone is “nice” to me.
_____54. At times I am preoccupied with food and eating.
_____55. I experience confusion often.
_____56. I refuse to buy things even when I need them and have the money.
_____57. I have difficulty feeling sexual.
_____58. I know that something destructive I do repeats a childhood event.
_____59. I remain a “team” member when obviously things are becoming destructive.
_____60. I feel as if I must avoid depending on people.
_____61. I sometimes feel bad because I enjoyed experiences that were exploitive of me.
_____62. I abuse alcohol often.
_____63. I tend to be accident-prone.
_____64. I spend much time performing underachieving jobs.
_____65. Sometimes I have outbursts of anger or irritability.
_____66. I do things to others that were done to me in my family.
_____67. I make repeated efforts to convince people who were destructive to me and not willing to listen.
_____68. I engage in self-destructive behaviors.
_____69. I get “high” on activities that are dangerous to me.
_____70. I use TV, reading and hobbies as ways to numb out.
_____71. I go into a fantasy world when things are tough.
_____72. I am underemployed.
_____73. I am extremely cautious of my surroundings.
_____74. I have thoughts and behaviors repeatedly that do not feel good to me.
_____75. I attempt to be liked by people who clearly are exploiting me.
_____76. I engage in self-mutilating behaviors (cutting self, burning, bruising, etc.).
_____77. I use drugs like cocaine or amphetamines to speed things up
_____78. I put off certain tasks.
_____79. I use “romance” as a way to avoid problems.
_____80. I feel very guilty about any sexual activity.
_____81. I often feel that people are out to take advantage of me.
_____82. I revert to doing things I did as a child.
_____83. I am attracted to untrustworthy people.
_____84. I endure physical or emotional pain most people would not accept.
_____85. I like “living on the edge” of danger or excitement.
_____86. When things are difficult, I will sometimes binge.
_____87. I have a tendency to be preoccupied with something other than what I need to be.
_____88. I have a low interest in sexual activity.
_____89. I am distrustful of others.
_____90. Some of my recurring behavior comes from early life experiences.
_____91. I trust people who have proved to be unreliable.
_____92. I try to be perfect.
_____93. I am orgasmic when h
urt or beaten.
_____94. I use drugs to escape.
_____95. I use marijuana or psychedelics to hallucinate.
_____96. I sometimes spoil success opportunities.
_____97. I am startled more easily than others.
_____98. I am preoccupied with children of a certain age.
_____99. I seek people whom I know will cause me pain.
_____100. I avoid mistakes at any cost.
_____101. I love to gamble on outcomes.
_____102. I work too hard so I won’t have to feel.
_____103. I will often lose myself in fantasies rather than deal with real life.
_____104. I go without necessities for periods of time.
_____105. I get physical reactions to reminders of abuse experiences (breaking out in cold sweat, trouble breathing, etc.).
_____106. I engage in abusive relationships repeatedly.
_____107. I have difficulty distancing myself from unhealthy relationships.
_____108. I sometimes want to hurt myself physically.
_____109. I need lots of stimulation so I will not be bored.
_____110. I get “lost” in my work.
_____111. I live a “double life.”
_____112. I vomit food or use diuretics to avoid weight gain.
_____113. I feel anxious about being sexual.
_____114. There is a certain age of children or adolescents that is sexually attractive to me.
_____115. I continue to have contact with a person who has abused me.
_____116. I often feel unworthy, unlovable, immoral or sinful because of experiences I have had.
_____117. I like sex when it is dangerous.
_____118. I try to “slow down” my mind.
_____119. I like “compartments” that others do not know about.
_____120. I experience periods when I’m not interested in eating.
_____121. I am scared about sex.
_____122. There are activities that I have trouble stopping even though they are useless or destructive.
_____123. I am in emotional fights (divorces, lawsuits) that seem endless.
_____124. I often feel I should be punished for past behavior.
_____125. I do sexual things that are risky.
_____126. When I am anxious, I will do things to stop my feelings.
_____127. I have a fantasy life that I retreat to when things are hard.
_____128. I have difficulty with play.
_____129. I wake up with upsetting dreams.
_____130. My relationships seem to have the same dysfunctional pattern.
_____131. There are certain people whom I always allow to take advantage of me.
_____132. I have a sense that others are always better off than me.
_____133. I use cocaine or amphetamines to heighten high-risk activities.
_____134. I don’t tolerate uncomfortable feelings.
_____135. I am a daydreamer.
_____136. At times, I see comfort, luxuries and play activities as frivolous.
_____137. I hate it when someone approaches me sexually.
_____138. Sometimes I find children more attractive than others.
_____139. There are some people in my life who are hard to get over, though they hurt or used me badly.
_____140. I feel bad when something good happens.
_____141. I get excited/ aroused when faced with dangerous situations.
_____142. I use anything to distract myself from my problems.
_____143. Sometimes I live in an “unreal” world.
_____144. There are long periods of time with no sexual activity for me.

Traumatic Stress Index Answer Sheet
from The Betrayal Bond: Breaking Free of Exploitive Relationships
by Patrick Carnes Ph.D.

Traumatic Stress Index Answer Sheet Place an X next to all statements that are true about you. Add up all the xs in each column and place the total in the space at the bottom of each column.
The two or three letter codes indicate the 8 types of Trauma Bonds.

Circle the number for the items you checked above … then count the number circled and write it in the column to the right: Total
1 TRT 1 9 17 25 33 41 49 57 65 73 81 89 97 105 113 121 129 137 Total: _____   1 TRT

2 TR 2 10 18 26 34 42 50 58 66 74 82 90 98 106 114 122 130 138 Total: 2 TR

3 TBD 3 11 19 27 35 43 51 59 67 75 83 91 99 107 115 123 131 139 Total: 3 TBD

4 TS 4 12 20 28 36 44 52 60 68 76 84 92 100 108 116 124 132 140 Total: 4 TS

5 TP 5 13 21 29 37 45 53 61 69 77 85 93 101 109 117 125 133 141 Total: 5 TP

6 TB 6 14 22 30 38 46 54 62 70 78 86 94 102 110 118 126 134 142 Total: 6 TB

7 TSG 7 15 23 31 39 47 55 63 71 79 87 95 103 111 119 127 135 143 Total: 7 TSG

8 TA 8 16 24 32 40 48 56 64 72 80 88 96 104 112 120 128 136 144 Total: 8 TA
Traumatic Stress Index Answer Sheet
Place an X next to all statements that are true about you.
Circle “x”s in each row – count those circled and place the total in the space at the bottom of each column.
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