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  • Ashley Glassman

Ancestral Trauma And The Menstrual Cycle

Updated: Jan 28

Menstrual cramps are a physical manifestation of the pain we carry over the years.

Our DNA carries the pain of our ancestors. Menstrual cramps that do not have a direct, obvious physical cause, such as a magnesium deficiency, cyst, etc., can be and often are caused by ancestral pain.

The body is very intelligent, and it knows it was not designed to carry that accumulative ancestral pain in our cells. So before we have a chance to procreate and pass along damaged DNA to yet another generation, our bodies sound the alarm to let us know that there is a problem that needs fixing. This “alarm” can “sound like” a myriad of different symptoms including; bloating, gas, stomach upset, tiredness, moodiness, cramps, excessively heavy bleeding, and many other such symptoms.

If we ignore the warning bells and proceed with our lives using drugs or supplements to mitigate symptoms, but do not ever fully heal the root of the condition and underlying DNA patterns, we are really shooting ourselves and future generations in the foot. Simply having a bearable life isn’t enough.

If we effectively silence or reduce the alarm signals coming from our damaged DNA, we have only two options.

Medications/herbs/natural healing modalities often do “work," meaning they help reduce the symptoms to the point that they no longer cause substantial upheaval to your life; but that, of course, results in a total lack of motivation to do the deep, hard, ancestral healing; which results in at best a lack of healing, and at worst it becomes a bandaid that allows the gangrene of pain in the DNA to spread and worsen unnoticed.


The amount of pain and oppression that women in particular carry in their DNA, (and as a result pass down to their children both male and female) would utterly astound doctors today if they could see it on a test. And it would utterly and drastically change how the medical system deals with pain and chronic pain in particular. Less time would be spent on hunting for 100% physical causes for “diseases” such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, endometriosis, etc. Because if we could test the DNA cheaply and efficiently in a doctor's office or basic lab, the DNA itself would show the damage. If we could look at our DNA, we would see that our cell's response patterns and pain receptors have been pre-programmed to respond the way they are to their current physical, emotional, and spiritual stressors.

These responses and “cell habits” so to speak that cause these chronic conditions were programmed in the past, and came down through generations of pain, and false beliefs.

So the idea that this kind of an issue could be corrected with more magnesium, carrot juice, or yoga is simplistic, to say the least. Can these things help our bodies get into a healthier place so we can re-program our DNA? Absolutely! And living a healthy, happy, grateful lifestyle is one of the best ways to support DNA healing. But often we can’t get to the happy, healthy place in life without doing some major healing work to remove the blocks that are in place from our own beliefs and the beliefs that our ancestors had that affected their DNA, which was then passed down to us.

While reprogramming cells does indeed have a physical and nutritive component; reprogramming anything is far more about information than the product. Yes, you need a few physical tools to reprogram a hard drive or cell, but more importantly, you need the correct information and someone who knows the process of reprogramming.


Our world programs us or tries to daily. Our DNA comes pre-programmed with information from generations past, true or false, which may or may not be helpful in our lives.

Information like “wolves barring their teeth at you means danger.” may well be a useful piece of info. An irrational fear of waterfalls passed down from generations of scary stories about waterfalls and their magical controlling powers, might however be a less helpful “DNA narrative” so to speak. This type of DNA story often shows up in people as irrational, spiritual, or supernatural explanations about events, meanings, etc. For example, a modern-day boy might have a strong unexplainable fear of waterfalls, and when asked why he thinks waterfalls are dangerous or scary, he replies “They will turn into a whirlpool at the bottom” or “The current will pull you UNDER!” These explanations may seem like a fairly rational explanation of the fear, but if pressed, you will find the person with the fear has never had a bad experience with a waterfall, nor known anyone who had a bad experience, nor has he heard scary stories about waterfalls or seen scary movies about them. Rather his fear is an instinctual or “cellular knowing” or cellular remembering. A strong fear not based on the individual's actual experience or beliefs.

This can be either a cellular “remembering” of ancestral traumas, such as an accident causing mass death on a waterfall and the impact/trauma of living through that made such a heavy impact on their DNA that it was altered and passed down.

Or, a story/fear could have been told and re-told until the fear of waterfalls became pervasive through the family’s DNA even though only one or two people actually experienced the trauma. Or still, other times the cellular remembering can be of a belief system that was reinforced and strengthened enough over a person’s life that they then passed the information (insert belief) down into their children’s DNA.


So, reprogramming or healing of DNA may need to be done for past traumas; primarily only traumas that were repeated often enough, were traumatic enough (such as genocide), or traumas that were present for a long enough period of time continuously, to alter the DNA of the recipient of the trauma.

For example, a car accident alone won’t alter your DNA in any noticeable form, especially for the next generation. However, a broken leg caused by a car accident that never healed correctly and caused issues for years or a lifetime WILL cause alterations to the DNA and cellular ‘memory”, and that cellular memory IS passed down to the generations that follow. And if they do not do the healing work needed, they will then pass that cellular memory (or damaged DNA) on to their children. Their children will feel the cellular effects of the trauma, that didn’t actually even happen to them, or even in their lifetime.

This continues on and on and can compound in each generation, in very unpleasant ways.

Thankfully, the trauma does not continue forever. Eventually, trauma is no longer passed down in the genetic physical body. Given enough time, if the trauma or belief pattern isn’t repeated or acted upon and the genetic memory will fade. Physical trauma in cellular memory reduces with every generation that is further removed from the incident/trauma if it is not reinforced, and of course the same is true of belief systems. Belief systems actually physically change our DNA and our children’s DNA for generations to come. Good and bad beliefs both act the same and affect our cells and all of the DNA we pass along. So what we believe doesn’t just affect us or our children because of what we say and do with/to them during their lifetimes, or by how we act out our beliefs. Our beliefs also affect our children on a DNA level and influence them to adopt certain beliefs, views about themselves, views about the world, etc. It doesn’t guarantee your children will believe what you do, but it does make it much more likely. It’s like tilling the ground before spreading seed. A lot more will sprout if the ground is soft. DNA programming makes it much easier for us to respond in very specific ways, and since humans often follow the path of least resistance, the chances of son’s following in Father’s footsteps are significant. Of course, you can always pull everything up that you were handed, and go totally against your programming because you are driven, passionate, aware, etc. Everyone is in control of their own lives and choices, but these pre-determined DNA patterns we are handed from our ancestors make certain choices the path of least resistance. And that path varies from person to person because of their DNA makeup.

Fortunately, a few things are true in fairy tales— and “Good Winning” is one of those true things.

Good beliefs/experiences and cellular memory pass MUCH farther down the genetic line than negative ones. This is what is talked about in Exodus chapter 20 and Numbers 14, and other ancient writings are talking about when they say things like “God visits the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third or fourth generations of those who hate Him, but shows lovingkindness to thousands of generations to those who love Him and keep my commandments.

It is not speaking of a mythical God reaching down His hand to punish generations because their dad screwed up, and magically blessing others for being lucky enough to be born with decent fathers. Rather, it was the author's attempt to communicate how “evil”, or “sin” or “trauma” doesn’t just affect the person who actually experienced it, nor does it simply affect their children. It goes way beyond that. And it was also the author's attempt to communicate that this stuff is REALLY worth paying attention to because it affects a lot of people. And every good DNA alteration (aka belief system chosen consciously) will benefit even MORE than any of the “bad” ones could possibly harm. But that’s a story that will have to be fleshed out another time.


Back to the menstrual cycle and it’s deep-seated roots in generations of pain:

This deep-seated pain is more than a vitamin, pill, herbal tea, or even lifestyle change can conquer. Those things may well be allies in the fight or tools that can help us along the way, but they are not the key to true deep healing. That will likely look like something else entirely. Something no doubt raw and primal.

It may look like weeping the unshed tears of my grandmother's.

It may look like voicing the anger of my mother that stuck in her throat and burned away her own self-respect even as she swallowed her red hot rage back down where she felt it belonged…. suppressed and silent.

It may look like screaming the screams of my great grandmothers as they were burned alive as witches.

And it most certainly WILL look like paying attention to every thought in my head and putting forth the effort to determine if it is a truth that I wish to hold onto, or if it is a lie passed down from perhaps well-meaning but outdated belief systems, or maybe it is just a thought or pattern that is not in alignment with what I want in my life NOW.

It most certainly will look like working faithfully to replace every false belief system of the past with the kind of cellular information I want for myself and any children I have.


It could be easy to be discouraged when you learn all this about DNA and beliefs if you have already had children and passed down unhealed traumas and unhelpful belief systems. But here is where it gets really magical! Cells in the same family, or from the same “bloodline” vibrate together VERY easily. Almost like magnets. This is why even as adults when we get together with our family, it is SO easy to shift back into the same roles, patterns, belief systems, actions and attitudes that we had as a family growing up.

Parents literally pass their belief and trauma response patterns down to their children via DNA, and then typically spend a lifetime of action re-enforcing that same belief system that was passed down by their parents. So by the time a child is an adult, they have usually had those beliefs and response patterns engrained both in their DNA and their psyche.

And while everyone in a family will respond differently to these beliefs and trauma response patterns based on their own individual makeup and choices; all the family members are still reacting and responding to the same traumas/DNA/vibrations.


This shared DNA coding is what everyone in the family is subconsciously responding to, can be a huge source of conflict because no one even knows what traumas they are subconsciously responding do. Maybe a family recognizes that Great-Grandpa, who actually LIVED through World War 2 and suffered great horrors, is now affected by that experience permanently; but few people take time to notice the trickle-down effect of these traumas and how they affect generations to come and predispose them to specific beliefs and reactions. We recognize it with drugs, and alcohol; how the DNA passes a down a propensity for alcohol abuse, but beliefs are just as altering of our DNA as substances and should be taken just as seriously.

This DNA that is passed down causes families to experience different but similar propensities. When family members leave home and their family unit and go their separate ways, they often may not even realize or notice their DNA has some unhelpful programming. They may have a much happier life and “feel like a totally different person” when they are away from their family unit. They may say stuff like “I hate who I become when I’m around my family….” or “I was in a good mood until my mom looked at me that way…..”

But here’s what is actually happening, and why:

This trauma that was experienced and passed down in our cells needs to heal.

It WANTS to heal.

Or the belief system that was adopted and passed down in the cellular memory is no longer a helpful belief system, and it wants to be changed.

We live our lives in an almost constant state of unawareness, or “subconscious action”. We keep so busy and have so much noise and hubbub around us that we aren’t even aware of our own bodies' DNA cell response (vibration), and whether we like it or not. But what we ARE more aware of is OTHER people’s vibrations/cellular beliefs. So we are gifted with families full of other humans with similar cellular beliefs as our own, and we are thrust into life with them every day so we get the chance to see if we like how those cellular expressions play out or not.

With only one other person in the family, we might not notice the vibrations and patterns that need to be changed. But get a whole family with multiple generations together, and all that DNA, all those belief systems and traumas that were passed down, all vibrating TOGETHER is a hard thing to ignore; AND a hard thing not to get sucked into feeling yourself very quickly if you haven’t put in the work to identify and heal these deep parts of you.


Now back to the magical part!

We can use the fact that a families' DNA vibrates together to our advantage.

If we see the problems, patterns, and belief systems we need to change that were passed down; and if we do the crazy hard work to replace those beliefs with what we DO want… If we do that work, OUR vibration and DNA changes. And if a parent's vibration changes, it takes a VERY aware child not to have their vibration change to match the new vibration the parent has. Especially when a child is young, their vibration is very easily influenced by a parent's vibration (ie. state of being, belief systems. etc.)

So, we use this to our advantage.

When a kid gets older and gains more awareness in the conscious centers of the brain, it is much harder to pull your child’s vibration up just because yours is. But if we realize we have to do ancestral work while our kids are still young and attached vibrationally to us? We essentially will undo their poorly programmed DNA merely by doing so to ourselves, and then consistently being around our children and providing them with a different belief or experience than their faulty DNA predisposed them for. Our DNA literally teaches their DNA through vibration. And we can and should use this to our advantage!

So once again back to the menstrual cycle:

Ancestral trauma can manifest as menstrual cramps and severe symptoms, and more women need to become aware of the connection and do the work of re-wiring belief systems around what it fundamentally means to be a woman. Rewriting the dread that comes with certain sensations, and the historical “meanings” that were applied to symptoms. Assigning new beliefs of my own choosing regarding what each “phase” of my cycle means, and each sensation…

This is where each of us can start.


Choosing new patterns instead of just accepting the ones handed to you by your DNA and circumstances, is beautiful, holy work. And we are honored as women to be able to do it. Lets lay the foundation for future generations carefully, and thoughtfully.


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