Saturday Oct 5, 2019
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This presentation focuses on bringing a non-judgmental, sex-positive and mindfulness-based approach to working with adult clients of sexual trauma.
This presentation will focus on bringing a non-judgmental, sex-positive, and mindfulness-based approach to working with adult clients of sexual trauma. We will focus on helping clients identify stress responses they experience related to trauma, gain familiarity and comfort in talking about sex when working with survivors, and learn applied mindfulness techniques for in and out of the therapy office. Participants will learn to hone their skills in reading non-verbal and somatic cues from clients, and gain skills they can apply with clients in helping them reclaim their sexual empowerment. Knowledge and skills covered will be focused on adult survivors of sexual trauma. Survivors of sexual trauma are likely to have challenges with dissociation during sexual intimacy with partners. Mindfulness can be especially helpful for women who have survived sexual trauma. Although dissociation may have evolved as an adaptive strategy to allow [a victim of childhood sexual abuse] to cope with the abhorrent acts subjected upon her, disconnection between genital and psychological arousal during consensual sexual activity as an adult has a direct negative effect upon sexual response and satisfaction (Brotto, Seal, and Rellini, 2012). While psychotherapy treatment may help reduce symptoms of post-traumatic stress, many social workers may not be addressing sexual concerns (Bird, Gilmore, Stappenbeck, Heiman, Cue Davis, Norris, & George, 2017). Learning to feel safe enough to be sexually intimate again can be terrifying, and also has the potential to help survivors learn to connect with their own body, understand their desire, and feel empowered. In this presentation, you will learn how to apply mindfulness-based techniques to help clients connect with their emotions, their sense of boundaries, and move through triggers without dissociating. Molly will help you feel more comfortable using the language of anatomy and sexual intimacy, introduce mindfulness practices for use in session and for clients to use at home, and help you guide clients in understanding their trauma response and bring self-compassion to their healing. Participants will get a brief overview of common symptoms that survivors of sexual abuse experience in sexual intimacy. We will practice basic mindfulness activities and discuss research supporting how embodied mindfulness practice can relieve post-traumatic symptoms. Molly will introduce experiential activities that help clients get in touch with their sense of boundaries in order to understand authentic consent. We will review tools you can use in session to educate and guide clients in asserting boundaries, tracking triggers, communication, and getting in touch with pleasure. This presentation will include lecture, experiential activities, and resources you can use in practice. This presentation is not designed for treating people in acute crisis, but better suited to clients in long term psychotherapy treatment. This training is designed for clinicians, advocates, social workers, and counselors that work in outpatient mental health settings with adult survivors of sexual trauma. Much of the content will be useful to survivors themselves and their loved ones who are not clinicians. Anyone is welcome to attend, but please note the workshop will not provide space for people to process their trauma. If you're looking for support, please contact Rape Crisis Center of NM to learn about their free counseling services and groups. If you have questions about whether this training is right for you, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Scholarships available for students or those not seeking CEUs.