Working in the field of complex psychological trauma: a framework for personal and professional growth, training, and supervision

Anne Marie Coleman*, Zoë Chouliara, Kay Currie

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The aim of this article is to explore the positive and negative impacts of working therapeutically in complex psychological trauma (CPT), particularly the field of gender-based violence (GBV) and childhood sexual abuse (CSA), from the clinicians’ perspective. The focus was on the prospect of positive gains and growth for therapists. Twenty-one clinicians (n = 21; counselors/psychotherapists and psychologists) from National Health Service (NHS) specialist trauma services, a community mental health team, and specialist sexual assault counseling organization participated. Interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) was utilized to conduct single one-off interviews and analysis. Six themes were identified: Called to the work; Connection, Separation, and Oneness; Into and out of the darkness; Chaos into meaning; Reparation not repetition; and Expansion and growth. The first “Therapist Led Framework of Growth in Trauma Work” is presented. Vicarious posttraumatic growth (VPTG) was a key finding, with CPT therapists experiencing a “challenge/benefit/change” growth process. Adoption of actively relational strategies to enhance clinicians’ growth process through trauma work is being proposed. The benefits of conceptualizing both the positive and negative impacts of such work for supervision, training, shaping the formal curricula, service management, and continuing professional development (CPD) are being discussed. The need for good practice guidelines on self-care internationally is highlighted.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Interpersonal Violence
Early online date20 Mar 2018
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 20 Mar 2018
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Growth
Wounds and Injuries
Community Mental Health Services
Darkness
Sex Offenses
National Health Programs
Self Care
Practice Guidelines
Violence
Psychotherapy
Curriculum
Psychological Trauma
Counseling
Organizations
Interviews
Psychology

Cite this

@article{0f8261b7c58840628455ab4888b5c717,
title = "Working in the field of complex psychological trauma: a framework for personal and professional growth, training, and supervision",
abstract = "The aim of this article is to explore the positive and negative impacts of working therapeutically in complex psychological trauma (CPT), particularly the field of gender-based violence (GBV) and childhood sexual abuse (CSA), from the clinicians’ perspective. The focus was on the prospect of positive gains and growth for therapists. Twenty-one clinicians (n = 21; counselors/psychotherapists and psychologists) from National Health Service (NHS) specialist trauma services, a community mental health team, and specialist sexual assault counseling organization participated. Interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) was utilized to conduct single one-off interviews and analysis. Six themes were identified: Called to the work; Connection, Separation, and Oneness; Into and out of the darkness; Chaos into meaning; Reparation not repetition; and Expansion and growth. The first “Therapist Led Framework of Growth in Trauma Work” is presented. Vicarious posttraumatic growth (VPTG) was a key finding, with CPT therapists experiencing a “challenge/benefit/change” growth process. Adoption of actively relational strategies to enhance clinicians’ growth process through trauma work is being proposed. The benefits of conceptualizing both the positive and negative impacts of such work for supervision, training, shaping the formal curricula, service management, and continuing professional development (CPD) are being discussed. The need for good practice guidelines on self-care internationally is highlighted.",
author = "Coleman, {Anne Marie} and Zo{\"e} Chouliara and Kay Currie",
year = "2018",
month = "3",
day = "20",
doi = "10.1177/0886260518759062",
language = "English",
journal = "Journal of Interpersonal Violence",
issn = "0886-2605",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Inc.",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Working in the field of complex psychological trauma

T2 - a framework for personal and professional growth, training, and supervision

AU - Coleman, Anne Marie

AU - Chouliara, Zoë

AU - Currie, Kay

PY - 2018/3/20

Y1 - 2018/3/20

N2 - The aim of this article is to explore the positive and negative impacts of working therapeutically in complex psychological trauma (CPT), particularly the field of gender-based violence (GBV) and childhood sexual abuse (CSA), from the clinicians’ perspective. The focus was on the prospect of positive gains and growth for therapists. Twenty-one clinicians (n = 21; counselors/psychotherapists and psychologists) from National Health Service (NHS) specialist trauma services, a community mental health team, and specialist sexual assault counseling organization participated. Interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) was utilized to conduct single one-off interviews and analysis. Six themes were identified: Called to the work; Connection, Separation, and Oneness; Into and out of the darkness; Chaos into meaning; Reparation not repetition; and Expansion and growth. The first “Therapist Led Framework of Growth in Trauma Work” is presented. Vicarious posttraumatic growth (VPTG) was a key finding, with CPT therapists experiencing a “challenge/benefit/change” growth process. Adoption of actively relational strategies to enhance clinicians’ growth process through trauma work is being proposed. The benefits of conceptualizing both the positive and negative impacts of such work for supervision, training, shaping the formal curricula, service management, and continuing professional development (CPD) are being discussed. The need for good practice guidelines on self-care internationally is highlighted.

AB - The aim of this article is to explore the positive and negative impacts of working therapeutically in complex psychological trauma (CPT), particularly the field of gender-based violence (GBV) and childhood sexual abuse (CSA), from the clinicians’ perspective. The focus was on the prospect of positive gains and growth for therapists. Twenty-one clinicians (n = 21; counselors/psychotherapists and psychologists) from National Health Service (NHS) specialist trauma services, a community mental health team, and specialist sexual assault counseling organization participated. Interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA) was utilized to conduct single one-off interviews and analysis. Six themes were identified: Called to the work; Connection, Separation, and Oneness; Into and out of the darkness; Chaos into meaning; Reparation not repetition; and Expansion and growth. The first “Therapist Led Framework of Growth in Trauma Work” is presented. Vicarious posttraumatic growth (VPTG) was a key finding, with CPT therapists experiencing a “challenge/benefit/change” growth process. Adoption of actively relational strategies to enhance clinicians’ growth process through trauma work is being proposed. The benefits of conceptualizing both the positive and negative impacts of such work for supervision, training, shaping the formal curricula, service management, and continuing professional development (CPD) are being discussed. The need for good practice guidelines on self-care internationally is highlighted.

U2 - 10.1177/0886260518759062

DO - 10.1177/0886260518759062

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:85044347767

JO - Journal of Interpersonal Violence

JF - Journal of Interpersonal Violence

SN - 0886-2605

ER -