Working With Women Survivors of Trauma and Abuse
For individuals in the U.S. & U.S. territories
In Working With Women Survivors of Trauma and Abuse, Dr. Laura S. Brown shows her approach to treating female clients who have been traumatized or abused. Women are more likely than men to experience interpersonal trauma, including sexual assault and partner violence, and they also process traumatic or abusive events in a distinct way, mediated by their biology and by women's socialization.
Dr. Brown discusses and demonstrates her approach of creating a safe environment for traumatized clients, teaching self-care, and helping clients to process and integrate the trauma.
In this session, Dr. Brown draws on her feminist theoretical orientation to treatment as she works with a woman from an abusive family system, focusing on empowering the client and validating the client's experiences.
Feminist therapy concerns itself with issues of gender, power, and social location in the lives of clients. As such it's unusually well-suited as a framework for understanding trauma and interpersonal violence because much of such violence occurs as a result of people's positions of relative powerlessness in the social realm.
Dr. Brown's focus in this session, as in all of her work, is on the empowerment of the client. Because women frequently receive messages that devalue their experiences, this empowerment centers around assisting the client to own and value her experience, rather than see it as problematic.
Laura S. Brown, PhD, is a clinical and forensic psychologist in private practice in Seattle. Her publications span the fields of feminist therapy theory and practice, ethics, multiculturalism, lesbian and gay issues, and trauma.
She is the winner of the 1995 American Psychological Association Award for Distinguished Professional Contributions to Public Service, and the Sarah Haley Award for Clinical Excellence from the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies.
For more information about Dr. Brown, please see her Web site.
- Brown, L. S. (1994). Subversive dialogues: Theory in feminist therapy. New York: Basic Books.
- Brown, L. S. (2003). Sexuality, lies, and loss: Lesbian, gay, and bisexual perspectives on trauma. Journal of Trauma Practice, 2, 55–68.
- Brown, L. S. (2004). Feminist paradigms of trauma treatment. Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training, 41, 464–471.
- Pope, K. S., & Brown, L. S. (1996). Recovered memories of abuse: Assessment, therapy, forensics. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
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