There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.
-Zora Neale Hurston
Through both readings and class discussion, students will learn to identify, recognize, define, and diagnose psychological trauma. Emphasis is placed on early relational/developmental trauma – usually referred to as complex trauma. Students will learn about the essential psychodynamic and developmental consequences of early life relational trauma. An introduction to a stage-oriented model of trauma therapy will be provided with additional elaboration on the essential elements of conducting trauma-focused psychotherapy.
Through readings, class discussion and case presentation, students will learn: how to define, identify, and work with people with dissociation resulting from trauma. A focus will be on the high incidence and significance of this condition; a historical review of the concept of dissociation; how childhood trauma, including both relational trauma and the sexual and physical abuse of children, results in dissociation; how unrecognized trauma may emerge during the process of psychotherapy and how to understand and work with this.
Some basic information on dissociative process and dissociative structure are covered, including readings form the instructor’s book, The Dissociative Mind. Learning objectives: be able to describe three of the ways the word “dissociation” is used; be able to describe the concept of “splitting” in terms of attachment and dissociation; be able to articulate the dissociative aspect of projective identification; be able to discuss the concept of dissociative attunement; be able to apply the above concepts with positive clinical effect in practice with traumatized individuals.
Through both readings and class discussion, students will learn: how to define and identify common transference and countertransference configurations in working with traumatized adults; when to use transference and countertransference data implicitly versus explicitly with the patient; how to understand enactments and how to clinically utilize enacted material to help patients better understand and resolve their trauma histories.
Through readings, lecture and class discussion, students will learn: to recognize the effects of traumatic experience on cognition, affect, sensorimotor experience and behavior as encoded in memory; clinical principles as guidelines to reconstruct personal narrative and developmental history; clinical techniques to address dissociation and memory gaps such as integration, affect bridge, meaning and control of flashbacks.
Through readings, presentation of clinical material and class discussion
students will: become familiar with the basic elements of current Attachment Theory; develop an understanding of how Attachment Theory relates to both normative interactional behavior and to the more “symptomatic” behaviors of traumatized individuals; gain a richer understanding of the relational aspects of dissociative processes and their connection to different forms of traumatic attachment; learn how internalized patterns of attachment manifest in treatment situations and how to use the information in these experiences to enhance formulations and the subsequent development of interventions when treating traumatized individuals.
This seminar will focus on the interpersonal aspects of intimate relationship trauma, using the specific example of men sexually abused as boys. The course will address the special issues boys and men face when processing childhood sexual abuse. Particular attention will be given to the topics of male gender socialization, sexual orientation worries, and myths that interfere with men being open about their histories or even recognizing their sexual betrayal. Treatment issues and transference/countertransference dilemmas will be addressed. Teaching methods will include didactic lecture, clinical examples from the instructor’s practice, and discussion of students’ clinical examples.
By the end of the seminar, students will understand prevalence and meaning of boyhood sexual abuse; understand the relational impact of sexual betrayal on boys; understand how masculine gender socialization and concerns about sexual orientation intersect with processing boyhood sexual abuse; and be able to explore transference and countertransference reactions when working with male victims of childhood sexual abuse.
Through both readings and intensive class discussion, students in this seminar will consider the psychology of those defined as “Perpetrators” of interpersonally-mediated traumatic events. The seminar will focus on gaining a better sense and understanding of the psychological organization of such persons, especially in terms of the role of dissociation, and will explore the clinical challenges inherent in working with them. In depth discussion of clinical examples will be utilized with an eye towards conceptualizing potential countertransference interferences and pitfalls in working with such individuals.
Students will be able to discuss: the concept of identification with the aggressor, including its clinical manifestations; how it results from trauma and is related to other consequences of trauma; how it influences and restricts someone’s subjective experience and interpersonal relationships; how it manifests in the treatment situation, and can be addressed clinically.
Students will learn to define and recognize resilience, and to understand its antecedents and development. Students will learn how to work with traumatized individuals to develop resilience, as an antidote to trauma-induced helplessness. Students will learn to differentiate resilience from hardiness or stoicism.