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Effective Treatment for Complex PTSD Related to Childhood Abuse and Multiple Traumatization (Audio Training, 6 Credits)

with Marylene Cloitre, PhD

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This workshop will present a flexibly-applied, evidence-based 16 session treatment for adults who have complex forms of PTSD related to childhood abuse and multiple life traumas. This sequential, two-phase treatment is based in a developmental model which is sensitive to the disturbances in attachment, emotion regulation and interpersonal functioning that survivors of childhood or chronic interpersonal violence often bring to treatment. Phase 1: Skills Training in Affective and Interpersonal. Regulation (STAIR) enhances day-to-day functioning by building emotion regulation capacities and interpersonal skills and provides a window of opportunity for client and therapist to develop a strong therapeutic alliance. The second phase of treatment is a modified version of prolonged exposure (MPE). After the exposure work is completed, emotions arising from the narrative are identified and modulated through grounding techniques. In addition, client and therapist review the taped narratives for interpersonal schemas about self-and-others regarding themes of rejection, betrayal, shame, failure and loss. Principles and strategies for maintaining a positive and effective working relationship with the client throughout the treatment will be discussed. STAIR/MPE has been shown to provide improvement in emotion regulation self-efficacy, anger expression, interpersonal problems, and perceptions of social support. Relapse prevention strategies which emphasis the acceptance-based emotion regulation interventions learned during the skills training will be included.

Learning Objectives:

  • List at least two strategies for improving emotional regulation and self-efficacy in this population
  • Describe the unique set of  clinical issues involved in the treatment of childhood abuse with multiple traumatization
  • Describe a strategy to revise maladaptive interpersonal schemas
  • Demonstrate a modification of prolonged exposure that explores and identifies interpersonal schemas