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Helping Traumatized Communities Become Their Own Healers

After Decades, a 77-Year-Old Therapist and His Global Program Show No Signs of Slowing Down

Marian Sandmaier • No Comments

By Marian Sandmaier - For almost 25 years, Jim Gordon and his team at the Center for Mind-Body Medicine has worked in war zones, refugee camps, and communities struck by natural disasters and mass shootings, both in the United States and internationally. And still doing this work at 77, he has no plans to slow down.

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Creating Neighborhoods of Healing

A Trauma Therapist’s Passage with Chicago Gang Members

Mary Jo Barrett • No Comments

By Mary Jo Barrett - I'm on a five-day camping trip with 20 gang members as part of a program called Pride ROC. Most of these guys have suffered repeated abuse and severe poverty, seen friends and family members shot, stabbed, or fatally overdosed on drugs. Not surprisingly, every one of them suffers from complex trauma—which is why I’m here as a therapist, trying to apply what I know and use in my office in a place far away from the comfortable world I usually inhabit.

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The Art of Not Knowing the Answer

A Trauma Specialist Shares Her Most Therapeutic Moment

Mary Jo Barrett • No Comments

By Mary Jo Barrett - My very first case was the Byford family. The father was serving a six-month sentence for domestic abuse. During a home visit several months into treatment, the daughter, Laura, announced, “Dad is getting out of jail today! And he’s coming here!” My mind went blank. Her mother looked at me. Suddenly, it was as though I passed whatever strength I had to her, and she then passed it back to me.

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A Look Inside MDMA-Assisted Therapy

A Trauma Specialist Straddles Two Worlds

Marcela Ot’alora G. • 1 Comment

By Marcela Ot’alora G. - As every trauma therapist knows, getting free of the debilitating symptoms of PTSD, if it happens at all, can take years. In my work on an MDMA-research project, I’ve observed close-up the profound effect psychedelic drugs can have in facilitating—and sometimes transforming—the often lengthy and difficult process of healing from PTSD.

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VIDEO: Peter Levine's Secret to Releasing Trauma from the Body

Watch Healing in an Actual Session with a Combat Veteran Suffering from PTSD

Peter Levine • 1 Comment

Among the first to fully realize that humans have an innate psychophysiological capacity for overcoming trauma, Peter Levine developed Somatic Experiencing, a simple yet profoundly effective mind-body healing technique. Here, he explains how trauma gets stored in the body, and shares a video from an actual session where he helps a PTSD survivor erase trauma-induced tics.

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Inside the Ayahuasca Experience

Gabor Maté on When Shamanism Meets Psychotherapy

Gabor Maté • No Comments

By Gabor Maté - Several years ago, I began to receive inquiries about what I knew regarding the use of ayahuasca in the healing of addiction. Since then, I've developed deep respect for the collaborative power of shamanic medicine allied with the insights and practice of depth psychology. Respect may be too mild a word—awe hits closer to the mark.

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Supreme Testimony

What Christine Blasey Ford Could Mean for Survivors

Lauren Dockett • 4 Comments

By Lauren Dockett - As trauma specialist Mary Jo Barrett explains, Christine Blasey Ford’s testimony has been empowering for many survivors of sexual assault. Will that change next week?

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Learning to Bear the Unbearable

How MDMA Works

Bessel van der Kolk, Rich Simon • 3 Comments

By Bessel van der Kolk and Rich Simon - As a researcher and outspoken advocate for therapeutic innovation, Bessel van der Kolk has been as influential as anyone in shaping the landscape of trauma therapy today. He describes what’s distinctive about the therapeutic potential of psychedelics.

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VIDEO: Peter Levine Shares a Personal Story About Trauma

What Does It Take to Ward Off Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?

Peter Levine • 1 Comment

Among the first to fully realize that humans have an innate psychophysiological capacity for overcoming trauma, Peter Levine developed Somatic Experiencing, a simple yet profoundly effective mind-body healing technique. In this clip from his 2014 Symposium address, Levine shares a personal story about a traumatizing event in his own life, and explains the remedy that helped him ward off post-traumatic stress.

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VIDEO: Mary Jo Barrett on Doing Trauma Treatment Right

What's New in Trauma Treatment, the Importance of Groups, and More

Mary Jo Barrett • No Comments

In this interview, Networker Assistant Editor Chris Lyford talks to family therapist and trauma specialist Mary Jo Barrett about the evolution of trauma treatment and the importance of bringing families into the mix.

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