Dr.George Rhoades is a clinical psychologist based in Hawaii and the founder and director of Ola Hou Clinic, as well as the Chair of the Education and Training Committee and the Continuing Education Committee for the APA’s Division 56, Trauma Psychology.
In addition, Dr. Rhoades is the Executive Director for Roads To Hope, a non-profit humanitarian organization devoted to helping those traumatized around the world by addressing the spiritual, emotional and physical aftereffects of trauma.
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised.
What Led to the Specialization of Trauma?
There have been several influences throughout George’s life which have drawn him into the field of trauma. In the 1980’s George worked as a professor in the city of Hanoi, and then in the early 1990’s in South Korea. Both of these experiences brought George in contact with many individuals who had encountered trauma. For George it became a choice: Do I ignore this area of trauma that I constantly see, or do I also work with that while keeping a balance with my wife and family? George chose the latter.
A Crucial Early Mistake
George shares an engaging story about a time approximately ten years ago when he was teaching a course on parenting to a group of locals in a remote village in Southern Sudan. George began to speak about the challenges and rebellious stages teens go through. Then all I saw was blank stares. They told me that we don’t have teenagers. Our kids go from being children to adults, as they have to garden, and fight, and guard the villages.
I stay in this field because people get well and they can lose their diagnosis of PTSD. Also, it’s so rewarding to see people stabilize and to see their lives come back together again.
- Look at every person you treat as someone with a unique cultural history and background.
- Go to trainings and conferences!
- Read as much as you can!