As all clinicians know, reading books is not enough to achieve clinical competence and effectiveness. Fortunately, there are many excellent training opportunities available, both specific to treating the men served by 1in6 and more generally applicable to clients with histories of childhood trauma.
Of course, which workshops are a good match for a particular clinician depends on one’s theoretical orientation(s), preferred approaches, and clinical style.
Here we recommend several trainings by other organizations that we are confident will be helpful to many therapists working with the men we serve.
Seeking Safety – Seeking Safety is a clinician-friendly and well researched present-focused therapy to help people attain safety from trauma/PTSD and substance abuse. Clinicians and clients both appreciate the non-confrontational approach and its respect for the client’s complexity, dignity, and intelligence. The treatment is available as a book that provides guidance for clinicians and client handouts (see Books for Professionals). Training can occur either via videotape, onsite training, attending an existing training, or telephone consultation. Three trainers recommended by Lisa Najavits, the developer of Seeking Safety, for their experience working with childhood sexual abuse and men, are Kevin Reeder, Ph.D. (based in Little Rock), Martha Schmitz, Ph.D. (in San Francisco), and Kay M. Johnson, Ph.D. (in New York).
Internal Family Systems Therapy – As noted in Books for Professionals, IFS is a relatively new treatment model that has already greatly benefitted many therapists and their clients. Many IFS trainers, like the program’s developer Richard Schwartz, are very experienced at working with men with histories of sexual and other childhood traumas. The training model involves six intensive three-day trainings and supervision over a year. For more info, visit the Center for Self Leadership.
Sensorimotor Psychotherapy – As noted in Books for Professionals and described on the website of the Sensorimotor Psychotherapy Institute, this is “a body-oriented talking therapy that integrates verbal techniques with body-centered interventions in the treatment of trauma, attachment, and developmental issues…. The courses taught by SPI are based on principles of mindfulness and mind/body/spirit holism and informed by contemporary research in neuroscience, attachment theory, trauma, and related fields.”
Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) – A great deal of research has proven that EMDR is a powerful way to promote healing by transforming traumatic memories. Also, EMDR can be especially accessible and helpful to men with histories of unwanted or abusive sexual experiences, because unlike other ‘memory processing’ interventions, it does not require them to talk about the contentof their memories, which can be a huge obstacle due to shame and guilt. Trainings are available from the EMDR Institute and the EMDR International Association.
Interventions for Dissociation – Dissociative symptoms and disorders are not uncommon among adults with histories of chronic childhood trauma, but many clinicians have not received adequate training to assess and treat them. Excellent training is available from two organizations listed below, Sidran Institute and International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISSTD).