Anti-Scam FAQ: What is Vicarious Trauma?


Vicarious trauma is the emotional and psychological impact that occurs when someone is exposed to the traumatic experiences of others. This can happen when someone hears about the traumatic experiences of another person, such as a victim of a crime, and can result in symptoms similar to those experienced by the victim. Vicarious trauma is different from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which is a psychological condition that occurs in response to experiencing a traumatic event firsthand.

Vicarious trauma can affect anyone who is exposed to the traumatic experiences of others, but it is particularly common among people who work in fields that involve helping or supporting others, such as first responders, victims’ assistance providers, therapists, counselors, and social workers. These professionals may be exposed to the traumatic experiences of their clients on a regular basis and may be at risk of developing vicarious trauma as a result.

Symptoms of vicarious trauma can include emotional numbing, difficulty sleeping, and changes in mood or behavior. It is important for people who are at risk of vicarious trauma to take care of their own mental health and to seek support if they are experiencing symptoms.

♦ If you have questions for SCARS you can send them to us by email to or in a message to one of our sites or Facebook pages!