Trauma: Engage, Educate & Empower JESSICA LUQUIS, MA, LMHC & JENNIFER BARRY, LMSW ST. CATHERINES CENTER FOR CHILDREN DECEMBER 2015 What is a trauma assessment? Similar to a bio-psycho-social assessment, however focuses on trauma the child has experienced throughout the lifespan, can be specific to sexual trauma Is a clinical assessment, not forensic though is often used by Social Services or Child Protective workers for family court matters
Used to summarize traumatic experiences, assess childs readiness/appropriateness for treatment, and formulates treatment recommendations including level of care as relevant to supervision needs and permanency appropriateness Engagement Strategies. You are Not your abuse You are Not what they did to you You are Not your trauma You ARE the cleverness that survived You ARE the courage that escaped You ARE the power that hid and protected a tiny spark of your light! statistics show 25% of women and 16% of men have been sexually abused as children
Things to Avoid: gift giving, candy, distractions, other methods of bribery for compliance stickers or other prizes. being like the perpetrator and grooming the child to talk with us if this evaluation goes to court any type of prize or bribery will have the potential to invalidate your findings and recommendations as well your testimony.
This could lead to you being discredited as a professional and expert. Dont be a perp! Things to Avoidcontinued: Do not force a child into a session. It may take one or two introductions before the child is comfortable to speak with you. It also may be needed to defer the assessment/evaluation because it is important to not force the evaluation as this can be re traumatizing.
This does not mean you have not done your job or are not competent this actually means you are doing your job correctly!!!! Every 107 seconds another American is sexually assaulted (rainn.org) Things to Remember!!! Focus on the relationship, use the language and words the child uses to help them feel comfortable communicate empathy not sympathy
model resiliency watch body language, non verbal cues, facial expressions, tone of voice etc.. be comfortable when using words such as penis and vagina because this will come up frequently If you are uncomfortable your clients will be too!!! Things to remembercontinued
Use current terminology: no more good touch bad touch why not use good and bad???-this is labeling and sometimes bad feels good also leads to influence later relationships as sexual activity being bad it is helpful to ease into talking about touching, talk about less threating wrong things such as hitting, biting, kicking
talk about wrong touching and what it is, wrong implies it can be fixed, and bad implies black and white thinking no room for improvement. Things to Remember.continued Use appropriate interviewing techniques. provide rules for the assessment, inform child breaks are ok, make the child comfortable, explain process and validate the childs feelings Remind child you will not be mad at them, that you work with lots of kids that have talked about similar things
Be prepared have some toys, paper, crayons Keep it simple Normalize and neutralize! Delivering the Recommendations Its All in the DELIVERY..
Be strength based and validating dont say but lets use and display empathy Dont feel pressure to have all the answers, be Confident! its ok to be neutral from other people involved-objective is best
be the voice for the child take your time and take a breath It is easier to build strong children than to fix broken men Its All in the DELIVERYcontinued Acknowledge the elephant in the room- this is sensitive and difficult information
thank everyone for participating and encourage honesty remain focused on what is best for the child, no blaming, no shaming! build upon strengths and weaknesses will gradually take care of themselves Vicarious Trauma It is also called compassion fatigue, is the latest term that descries the phenomenon generally associated with the cost of caring for others Its the emotional residue from constant exposure to working with
people and hearing trauma stories Counselors become witnesses to the pain, fear and terror that trauma survivors have endured it is a State of tension and preoccupation with the stories and trauma experiences described by clients Burnout- something that happens over time and as it builds up a change, such as time off can take care of burnout or improve it Signs and symptoms
Hypervigilant (startle easy, being jumpy, sleep difficulty), feeling on edge Angry, irritated, blaming others Depression, loss of interest, loss of joy. Feeling hopeless associated with work Anxious, worried not doing enough for clients
Feeling NUMB Can impact counselors personal life, such as relationships as well as health both emotional and physical, this is why self care is IMPERATIVE! Self Care Self-Care Strategies Use humor and have fun!
Monitor yourself, track burnout and compassion fatigue Rest, eat healthy, take breaks (yes at work too) Yoga, cooking, meditation, attending religious services, going to sporting events, visit museums, going to the movies, hiking, painting or drawing use physical strategies such as: baths, walks, laughing, talking Trauma work isnt traumatizing unless you make it so, if you believe in resiliency
your clients will feel it as well, this is empowering as a clinician and as a client SEX does not have to all bad(at least lets hope not) When in doubt ask for help! Seek supervision, talk with peers References: Oneinfourusa.org
Rainn.org ACA.org Useful websites: Self care assessment website http://www.proqol.org/ProQol_Test.html Guided imagery and meditation website http:// www.innerhealthstudio.com
Engagement worksheets website http://www.therapistaid.com A little about us Jessica Luquis MA LMHC: is a graduate from Sage Graduate School in New York. She is currently a Trauma Therapist and clinical supervisor for the trauma treatment program at St. Catherines Center for Children. Ms. Luquis utilizes such modalities as TF-CBT and DBT in her treatment of children and adolescents with severe emotional disturbances who have endured trauma. Ms. Luquis uses yoga and meditation as her means of self care. Jennifer Barry LMSW : is a graduate from Fordham University in New York. She currently is the Intake Coordinator and Diagnostic Clinician for St. Catherines Center for Children. Ms. Barry also works with the sexual trauma treatment program, where she practices TF-CBT, play therapy and sand tray therapy with youth in need of specialized trauma treatment. Ms. Barry enjoys hot
QUESTIONS????? Thank you all for your hard work and dedication to helping children and families!!!!! Contact Info: Jessica Luquis, MA, LMHC: [email protected] Jennifer Barry, LMSW: [email protected]
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