AINC Proudly Presents:
Cultural Ethics of Trauma-Informed Couples Therapy: The STRONG Model
with Kristal DeSantis, LMFT, CCCP
In the presentation, we will begin with an overview of the acculturation model of ethics and explore how we as clinicians can incorporate the latest science on the brain and relationships into our existing practices. We will review the fundamentals of trauma and attachment theories and examine the ethics of addressing and working with trauma in a couples’ session.
We will also explore the challenges of ethically working with couples who are experiencing ongoing trauma and the reality of living an unsafe world – including interracial couples, non-traditional couples, and any relationships that do not fit within societally accepted “mono/heteronormative” boundaries.
Next we will consider an integrative approach to working with relationships that is culture- focused rather than strategy-focused. We will explore the challenges currently faced by therapists and discuss the impact and ethical considerations of using the person of the therapist to model this culture within the therapeutic relationship.
The presentation is divided into two parts with the first 1.5 hours heavily focused on ethics, attachment, trauma, and an overview of the STRONG model of relational therapy. The second part will focus on application in clinical practice and will have opportunities for clinicians to dialogue, experience, and workshop the model.
Kristal DeSantis, LMFT, CCCP, is the founder of Austin STRONG: Relationship Building Center, a group practice with offices in Austin and Cedar Park, and the creator of The STRONG Model of Relational Therapy, a trauma informed model for working with couples, families, and relationships of all kinds.
Kristal is trained in Gottman Marital Therapy, PREPARE/Enrich Premarital Counseling, Solution Focused Brief Therapy, and EMDR for trauma and PTSD recovery. She is a Certified Clinical Trauma Professional and provides trauma counseling as part the Austin Police Departments’ First Responder Mental Health Program as well as for Victims of Sexual Assault and DV through the Response and Resource Team. Her specialties include: Couples’ Therapy (including desire discrepancy/ out of control sexual behaviors/recovery from infidelity/high conflict couples), and working with those with acute and complex trauma.
She is the current President of the Austin Association of Marriage and Family Therapists and also volunteers her time as a Court Appointed Special Advocate and Guardian Ad Litem with the Family Court system through CASA of Travis County.
3 CEU Ethics Credits will be provided for LPC, LMFT, LCSW, and psychologists.