Trauma in Children – a handbook

Astrid sits in her classroom and a new substitute teacher comes in. He has a beard and a deep laugh. He reminds Astrid of the uncle who sexually abused her. She freezes in dread. Her stomach hurts and she feels an overwhelming need to go home.

One in five children in Sweden is the victim of sexual abuse in their childhood.* One in three children in every Swedish class has been physically abused by an adult in their childhood. In autumn 2015, almost 35,000 unaccompanied minors arrived in Sweden, many of them with experiences of war, persecution and displacement. Psychologists Moa Mannheimer, Sofia Bidö and Poa Samuelsberg have extensive experience working with traumatized children. In 2004, they received support from Childhood to produce a handbook for working with children who are victims of sexual abuse. They now want to supplement it with current research and practical tips and advice for everyone who meets vulnerable, traumatized children and their parents. Through support from Childhood, they have been able to carry out the book project “Trauma in Children.”

Experiences of violence, abuse, war and catastrophes can lead to serious consequences for children and hinder their development. But with the right support, the negative consequences can be minimized and improvements can be made so they can live and develop to their full potential. Trauma in children is a complex subject and a practical handbook was needed for those who work with these children and their parents. “Trauma in Children – A Handbook” (Swedish: “Traumatisering hos barn – en handbok”) provides readers with the knowledge and tools to discover, assess and treat trauma in children and their families. An abundance of case studies and dialogues bring the content to life and help to create an understanding of a complex subject.


*The Children’s Welfare Foundation Sweden: “It happens to one in five” (Swedish: “Det gäller ett av fem”) (2015)