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Abstract

To be trauma-informed is to understand the involvement and impact of violence and victimization in the lives of most consumers of mental health, substance abuse, and other services. It is also to apply that understanding in providing services and designing service systems to accommodate the requirements and vulnerabilities of trauma survivors and to facilitate their participation in treatment. This lesson will explain the difference between trauma-informed care and trauma-specific interventions, briefly review trauma history prevalences among consumers of mental health services, describe the development of a trauma-informed perspective in mental health, and discuss how standard clinical practices may inadvertently retraumatize those with trauma histories. This lesson will also outline the central features of a trauma-informed organization/department and the 5 principles of trauma-informed practice. Given the prevalence of traumatic experiences, especially those during development, and their long-standing effects on patients’ lives, the trauma-informed perspective offers a compelling and humane organizing principle for conceptualizing and addressing many of the problems and challenges facing those seeking mental health and other services.
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... The consistent associations between early trauma and adult intimate relationships highlight a need to identify mediating pathways to identify points of interventions. Moreover, in clinical settings not considering how childhood maltreatment influence adult intimate relationships precludes a complete picture of the presenting problem which may lead to ineffective or retraumatizing interventions (Butler et al., 2011). Ineffective or retraumatizing interventions may result in client dropout from therapy, increased absenteeism from sessions, or a slowing of therapeutic progress (Butler et al., 2011). ...
... Moreover, in clinical settings not considering how childhood maltreatment influence adult intimate relationships precludes a complete picture of the presenting problem which may lead to ineffective or retraumatizing interventions (Butler et al., 2011). Ineffective or retraumatizing interventions may result in client dropout from therapy, increased absenteeism from sessions, or a slowing of therapeutic progress (Butler et al., 2011). ...
... Thus, clinicians should be aware of and integrate historical experiences of trauma when encouraging couples to cope together to resolve experienced stressors rather than simply advocating for coping together. Simply advocating for dyadic coping is a misattuned and likely ineffective modality due to ignoring historical experience of interpersonal betrayal that may be unresolved (Butler et al., 2011). Clinically, couple therapists may need to help the couples navigate historical trauma (e.g., recognizing the impact of past historical trauma on current relationship) before encouraging and helping couples cope together. ...
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Childhood maltreatment is associated with poorer quality relationships and attachment theory has proffered an influential framework. The role of dyadic coping remains unclear and may play an integral role linking attachment insecurity and relationship quality among adults who experienced maltreatment. Using a sample of 177 adults (56.6% racial minority) were recruited from a southern university a serial mediational model was examined using structural equation modeling. Childhood maltreatment was linked with relationship quality through greater attachment avoidance and lower levels dyadic coping. Focusing on dyadic coping among avoidantly attached individuals from a trauma-informed perspective may be a point of clinical intervention.
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