429 Working with Self-Harming Adolescents and Adults
Saturday Morning Only
Clients who engage in self-inflicted violence are among the most perplexing and frightening one's therapist's face. . . .
Are these behaviors life-threatening? Should the clients be hospitalized? In this workshop, we’ll reduce such fears by depathologizing self-injury and distinguishing it from attempted suicide. We’ll explore why self-injury is a desperate, dysfunctional, yet coherent and creative attempt to cope with overwhelming feelings of rage, despair, anxiety, and self-loathing. We’ll discuss the relationship between self-harm and prior experiences of abuse and neglect, the types of triggering events, and the emotional cycle that perpetuates these behaviors. You’ll learn a number of creative treatment strategies, including ways to intervene at various points on the self-injury cycle to short-circuit and eventually extinguish the behavior. We’ll also explore an innovative safety contract (CARESS), which avoids the power struggles evoked by standard therapeutic agreements. Lisa Ferentz, L.C.S.W.-C., D.A.P.A.,
is the founder and president of The Institute for Advanced Psychotherapy Training and Education, which offers certificate programs in advanced trauma treatment. A trauma specialist, consultant, and educator, she was voted the 2009 Social Worker of the Year by the Maryland Society for Clinical Social Work.