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Relationship Strategies to Treat Challenging Trauma Client

Monday, April 19th 2021, 10:00 AM EST
Tuesday, April 20th 2021, 10:00 AM EST

Presenter: Robert T. Muller, PhD

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Full Day Webinar 

April 19-20, 2021

This Two Full Day Webinar includes a total of 12 CEUs Credits. This webinar is live and interactive.

If you have any difficulty registering, please email us here


 Course Schedule

April 19- 20, 2021.

Daily Schedule
10:00am-11:30am         Workshop
11:30am-12:00pm         break
12:00am-1:30pm           Workshop
1:30pm-2:30pm             Lunch
2:30pm-4:00pm             Workshop
4:00pm-4:30pm             Break
4:30pm-6:00pm             Workshop  


Course Description

This practical two-day workshop, led by Dr. Robert T. Muller, a leading expert on trauma therapy and globally acclaimed author of the psychotherapy bestseller, Trauma & the Avoidant Client, is aimed at building our understanding of the psychotherapeutic relationship with challenging trauma clients.

As therapists, while we try to maintain a strong therapeutic relationship, in practice this is easier said than done.  Trauma clients struggle to trust the therapist: Many minimize their own traumatic experiences or become help-rejecting.  Others rush into the work, seeking a “quick fix“, despite a long history of interpersonal trauma.

Drawing upon attachment theory and research, and upon a wealth of clinical experience.  Dr. Muller illustrates how to work with such hard-to-treat clients, how to find points of entry and ways to make contact.  Using a relational, psychodynamic approach, we explore strategies for developing the therapeutic relationship, to help the client regain a sense of trust in others. We look at therapeutic techniques through which the client is encouraged to take interpersonal risks, to mourn losses, and to face vulnerabilities. Dr. Muller follows the ups and downs of the therapy relationship with trauma survivors and specifically looks at: 

  • How do we tell when we’ve unknowingly compromised safety in the relationship?
  • What happens to the relationship when clients or therapists rush into the process, and how can this be addressed?
  • And how can subtle conflicts in the relationship become useful in treatment?

We also explore different choices therapists make in navigating the relationship -choices that often have a strong impact on outcome.  Recovery from trauma is a complicated process. When clients reveal too much, too soon, they may feel worse -making the pacing of therapy critical. Here too, the key is in the therapist-client relationship.  Dr. Muller walks us through the relational approaches that help pace the process of opening up -so that clients find the experience helpful, not harmful.

Throughout the workshop, theory is complemented by case examples, practical exercises, and segments from Dr. Muller’s own treatment sessions.  The workshop focuses on clinical skills that are directly applicable in our work as therapists.

Learning Objectives

The workshop helps practitioners using different therapeutic modalities to integrate attachment-based approaches with their existing skills, which they can then apply in their work.

These webinars offer 6 ASWB/NYS ED Contact Hours

Learning Objectives:
  1. Discuss how to help clients pace the process of opening up
  2. Implement safety in the therapeutic relationship early on
  3. Navigate and use conflicts in the relationship
  4. Recognize their own (therapist’s) feelings in the therapeutic process (e.g. the wish to rush into trauma work, or the wish to avoid it)
  5. Help clients mourn traumatic losses to bring post-traumatic growth