The ACE Test: Adverse Childhood Experiences

Get a sense of your childhood experiences that could possibly be negatively impacting you.

The ACE Test: Adverse Childhood Experiences

The ACE Test asks you questions about adverse childhood experiences you may have had. The CDC studied this in the mid-1990s to see what long-term effects these instances of trauma had on those who experienced them. The exact score you receive does not necessarily quantify the adverse effects troubling you today but helps you assess your overall experience. See the questionnaire below and get a sense of possible negative experiences you had as a child.

Oprah Winfrey includes these questions in her new book, "What Happened to You:" Conversations on Trauma, Healing and Resilience."


While you were growing up, during your first 18 years of life:

1. Did a parent or other adult in the household often … Swear at you, insult you, put you down, or humiliate you? or Act in a way that made you afraid that you might be physically hurt? If yes enter 1 ________

2. Did a parent or other adult in the household often … Push, grab, slap, or throw something at you? or Ever hit you so hard that you had marks or were injured? If yes enter 1 ________

3. Did an adult or person at least 5 years older than you ever… Touch or fondle you or have you touch their body in a sexual way? or Try to or actually have oral, anal, or vaginal sex with you? If yes enter 1 ________

4. Did you often feel that … No one in your family loved you or thought you were important or special? or Your family didn't look out for each other, feel close to each other, or support each other? If yes enter 1 ________

5. Did you often feel that … You didn't have enough to eat, had to wear dirty clothes, and had no one to protect you? or Your parents were too drunk or high to take care of you or take you to the doctor if you needed it? If yes enter 1 ________

6. Were your parents ever separated or divorced? If yes enter 1 ________

7. Was your mother or stepmother: Often pushed, grabbed, slapped, or had something thrown at her? or Sometimes or often kicked, bitten, hit with a fist, or hit with something hard? or Ever repeatedly hit over at least a few minutes or threatened with a gun or knife? If yes enter 1 ________

8. Did you live with anyone who was a problem drinker or alcoholic or who used street drugs? If yes enter 1 ________

9. Was a household member depressed or mentally ill or did a household member attempt suicide? If yes enter 1 ________

10. Did a household member go to prison? If yes enter 1 ________

Now add up your "Yes" answers: _______ This is your ACE Score

Exactly How to De-Escalate Aggression From a Stranger

Follow security Expert Bill Staton's important advice to keep yourself safe.

Have you ever had a tense interaction with a stranger in public? Perhaps your shopping carts accidentally knocked into each other or there was a misunderstanding in communication and the other person gets angry. You may wonder how you can de-escalate the aggression and exit the situation safely. So security expert Bill Stanton has your go-to advice for staying alert and protecting yourself in the face of verbal aggression and physical attacks.

THE INITIAL INTERACTION

Bill Stanton: "It always starts with something small, like someone being too close to you, or even more common, you get bumped by a shopping cart. You want to look at their eyes first -it may reveal emotional changes. But you can't rely on just that. Look at what their trunk is doing; a person's torso will reveal their intent. Body language like raising hands, heightened expression, tense shoulders — these are natural responses to a person who is feeling threatened and will escalate. They may begin to zero in on the space between you and them, and their voice will get louder and louder. You want to read this before it gets further and becomes explosive."

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