ACEs can be a single event or an ongoing situation where our safety, security, trust, or sense of self is threatened or violated, such as:

Abuse. Neglect. Family mental health issues or substance use disorder. A parent who is incarcerated. Witnessing violence.

Experiencing ACEs can cause what’s known as toxic stress.

It’s how our body responds to ongoing trauma and it can lead to negative mental and physical effects that last into adulthood.

But there’s healing ahead!

It starts with a better understanding of ACEs, toxic stress, and their effects on how we feel and act.

We’re stronger than our trauma.

If you are experiencing the effects of ACEs, you’re not alone.

3 out of 5 people in California have experienced at least one ACE.

1 out of 5 youth and young adults in California have experienced four or more ACEs.

Watch stories from others who have experienced ACEs, and learn how they’re healing.

See how youth across California are living beyond their trauma.

They talk about how ACEs show up in their lives — and the coping strategies that are helping them move forward.
18 Sacramento
Jada Imani
25 Alameda
22 Santa Barbara
24 Alameda
25 Santa Clara & LA County
17 United States
23 Ventura
18 Santa Cruz

We might not even realize how ACEs are influencing our emotions, our behavior, and our relationships.

Even in places where we should feel safe.

But we can live beyond the effects of our trauma. It begins with understanding how ACEs show up in our lives.

And then we can start healing.