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Trauma recovery: Processing guilt and shame

Trauma recovery: Processing guilt and shame

For decades, the therapeutic work of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) was to process fear, helplessness, and horror. The DSM has expanded the definition of PTSD to include guilt and shame. Evidence-based research indicates that unprocessed/unresolved guilt and shame are risk factors for developing and maintaining PTSD symptoms as well as compromising the healing process for clients with complex PTSD and developmental trauma.

This webinar will define guilt and shame and outline their similarities and differences. We will review the different subtypes of both emotions. We will review how we organize our conversations with clients and how we help clients face the unspoken needs and dilemmas that drive the guilt and shame experience.

Learning objectives:

  • 7 types of guilt
  • How to process conversations when:
    • The client feels guilty but is not guilty
    • The client has a distorted view of their role in a negative experience
    • When the client is guilty
  • 7 types of shame
  • How to process passing through shame and a shame-prone identity
  • How to pinpoint the source of a shame-prone identity 
  • The connection between dissociation and shame
  • How to change shame-prone patterns