This two-day workshop will offer a strengths-based, de-pathologizing approach to understanding and working with trauma survivors who engage in addictive behaviors. We will define traumatic experiences and identify the dynamics and manifestations of trauma including the challenges of attaching to dysfunctional and addicted caretakers; affect dysregulation and the inability to self-soothe; fight/flight and freeze responses; and somatization. We will also explore the inevitable ways in which childhood trauma and being raised by addicted parents manifests in a child, adolescent, and adult cognitive, behavioural, somatic, and emotional symptoms. Participants will learn about the additional stressors and developmental challenges of adolescence and how the unique functions of the adolescent brain create a greater vulnerability to risk-taking and addictive behaviours. We will also process the addictive nature of digital technology. Participants will explore the cyclical connection between trauma and addictive behaviours, and we will address the most effective ways to treat addiction in trauma survivors without re-traumatizing or rekindling relapses. Strategies involving safety, self-soothing, containment, cognitive re-framing, understanding the “relationship of addiction”; and incorporating 12-step work will be discussed. We will also identify specific issues of counter-transference and how to avoid the more common clinical pitfalls when treating this challenging population. Case examples, videos, and clients’ artwork will be incorporated into the training.
- Describe and implement four strategies that help promote a strengths-based approach to treatment.
- Identify four attachment patterns and explain their impact on child development.
- Explain the connection between inter-regulation and auto-regulation and identify four manifestations of affect dysregulation that can set the stage for addictive behaviours.
- Identify at least 3 examples of “meaning making” cognitions that either exacerbate or mitigate the impact of trauma.
- Identify at least 3 unique functions of the adolescent brain that make teens vulnerable to addictive and risk-taking behaviours.
- Explain at least three deleterious effects of digital technology on the adolescent brain and the impact technology is having on parent-child attachment.
- Identify at least 6 adolescent and adult adverse manifestations of growing up with trauma and addiction.
- Describe the cycle of trauma and addiction and how it leads to more trauma.
- Describe and implement at least 6 treatment strategies designed to address addiction in trauma survivors
- Identify and explain at least four clinical pitfalls when treating addictions in trauma survivors.
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Lisa Ferentz, MSW, LCSW-C, DAPA
Lisa is a recognized expert in the strengths-based, de-pathologized treatment of trauma and has been in private practice for 32 years. She presents workshops and keynote addresses nationally and internationally, and is a clinical consultant to practitioners and mental health agencies in the United States, Canada and the UK. She has been an Adjunct Faculty member at several Universities and is the Founder of “The Institute for Advanced Psychotherapy Training and Education,” now going into its tenth year of providing continuing education to mental health professionals and graduating over 800 clinicians from her two Certificate Programs in Advanced Trauma Treatment. In 2009 she was voted the “Social Worker of Year” by the Maryland Society for Clinical Social Work. Lisa is the author of “Treating Self-Destructive Behaviors in Traumatized Clients: A Clinician’s Guide,” now in its second edition, and “Letting Go of Self-Destructive Behaviors: A Workbook of Hope and Healing.” Her next book, “Be Afraid. Do it Anyway: And Other Lessons to Live By” will be out early in 2017. Lisa also hosted a weekly radio talk show, writes blogs and articles for websites on self-harm and self-care, teaches on many webinars, and is a weekly contributor to Psychologytoday.com. You can follow Lisa’s work at www.lisaferentz.com, Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.