Untangling Trauma: Attachment, Body and Mind
Trauma comes in many forms. Sometimes it can be a shock trauma like a car accident. Sometimes it can be a developmental trauma from difficult relationships from childhood. I have spent my professional career helping people with trauma understand how trauma affects their lives and develop tools and skills to manage that trauma.
Untangling trauma is not easy. Trauma not only affects the mind but also affects the body. Our nervous system is very powerful. It allows us to feel positive things like intimacy and safety but it has also developed mechanisms to protect us from danger. These mechanisms include the sympathetic nervous system, which controls our “fight or flight” response, and the parasympathetic nervous system, which causes us to shut down and conserve energy. Trauma, either from a single event or a pattern of abuse causes these systems to malfunction, which can lead to somatic symptoms that can profoundly affect a person's life.
Somatic Experiencing Practitioner & Trauma Psychotherapist
When human beings experience trauma or severe life stressors, it is not uncommon for their lives to unravel. My passion is bringing healing to people who have been through a traumatic/stressful experience. I am a licensed psychotherapist. I help my clients to find healthy perceptions of themselves and strengthen their relationships so they can know themselves as peaceful, complete, whole, and safe.
I know that no single approach is the right one for every individual, and so I have been trained in a range of modalities including Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy, Somatic Experiencing (SE), Dynamic Attachment Re-patterning (DARe) as well as Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR).
Somatic Experiencing (SE™)
Somatic Experiencing (SE™) is a body-oriented therapeutic model for healing trauma and other stress disorders. It is based on a multidisciplinary intersection of physiology, psychology, ethology, biology, neuroscience, indigenous healing practices, and medical biophysics and has been clinically applied for more than four decades. It is the life’s work of Dr. Peter A. Levine.
The Somatic Experiencing approach facilitates the completion of self-protective motor responses and the release of thwarted survival energy bound in the body, thus addressing the root cause of trauma symptoms. This is approached by gently guiding clients to develop increasing tolerance for difficult bodily sensations and suppressed emotions.
DARe (Dynamic Attachment Re-patterning)
DARe is a treatment modality built on extensive research about attachment styles and how a better understanding of those attachment styles can unlock the human's natural ability to self-heal. Developed by Dr. Diane Poole Heller, an internationally recognized speaker, author, and expert in the field of child and adult attachment theory and trauma resolution, DARe. Our brains store memories of early experiences, creating patterns that deeply affect our relationships and our behaviors in adult life. Dr. Heller's holistic approach, largely based on Somatic and Relational healing techniques, helps us discover the source of those patterns and to apply the right understanding to unwind them, thus releasing new energy to heal trauma.
EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is a psychotherapy technique that enables people to heal from the symptoms and emotional distress that are the result of disturbing life experiences. Eye movements (or other bilateral stimulation) are used to process negative memories that are affecting the individual. Harvard researchers have studied the connection between negative memories with the biological mechanisms involved in Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep. EMDR therapy works by using that connection to help people process their negative memories and the disturbing feelings related to those memories. In successful EMDR therapy, the meaning of painful events is transformed on an emotional level.