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Digital Seminar

Trauma and Attachment in Children and Families: Play, Art and CBT to Reduce Symptomology and Repair Connection

Christina Reese, PhD, LCPC
6 Hours 14 Minutes
Feb 13, 2019
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Digital Seminar
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What came first, the loss of attachment or the diagnosis … Anxiety, ADHD, ODD?

For the child who is oppositional, did they respond with opposition after feeling disconnected from their primary attachment or have their oppositional behaviors put stressors on their primary relationships?

Imagine a client/family in your office and you’re hearing about the oppositional and defiant child’s behavior from frustrated parents – which came first, the behavior and then the rupture in attachment. Or did the attachment come first and is showing as a behavioral disorder?

Watch me to become more successful in helping identify and heal ruptured attachments in family and children. Learn the ways that attachment trauma and relationship dysfunction impacts a child’s ability to feel safe with adults, follow directions and be respectful.

Reframe the behaviors to identify the distress, learn how attachment trauma is related to every diagnosis, and how repairing the primary attachment relationship can reduce symptomology.

Discover attachment-focused interventions to:

  • Reduce symptomology for anxiety, aggression, opposition, inattention, and mood instability
  • Increase connection for better self-esteem, coping skills, and sense of belonging
  • Improve emotional and self-regulation for life-long attachment
  • Build attachment-focused therapeutic rapport

Bring life-altering change to the children that you are working with, repairing foundational relationships and giving them the skills they need for life-long relationships, health and stability.


- PESI Australia, in collaboration with PESI in the USA, offers quality online continuing professional development events from the leaders in the field at a standard recognized by professional associations including psychology, social work, occupational therapy, alcohol and drug professionals, counselling and psychotherapy. On completion of the training, a Professional Development Certificate is issued after the individual has answered and submitted a quiz and course evaluation. This online program is worth 6.25 hours CPD for points calculation by your association.



Christina Reese, PhD, LCPC's Profile

Christina Reese, PhD, LCPC Related seminars and products

Christina Reese, LCPC, PhD, has been working with children impacted by trauma and their families for the last 20 years. She is a licensed clinical counselor in Maine, Maryland, and Pennsylvania and is a licensed clinical supervisor. Dr. Reese is an internationally recognized trainer for mental health professionals in creating trauma-informed schools, working with mental health in the classroom and attachment and trauma in children. She is a TBRI practitioner and owns Felicity Counseling Services. Dr. Reese authored the books Attachment, Puzzle Pieces, The Attachment Connection, Trauma and Attachment, The Socially Confident Teen, and Leveling Up.


Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Dr. Christina Reese maintains a private practice and has an employment relationship with Sheppard Pratt Health System. She receives royalties as a published author. Dr. Reese receives a speaking honorarium, recording, and book royalties from PESI, Inc. She has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Dr. Christina Reese has no relevant non-financial relationships.


  1. Distinguish attachment patterns that are healthy versus those that are rooted in trauma.
  2. Recognize how maladaptive attachment impacts clients’ connections and exacerbates mental health symptoms including anxiety, depression, opposition, defiance and mood stability.
  3. Discover the risk factors of developing insecure attachment: parental substance misuse or abuse, a mental health diagnosis in the parent or child, a child with a history of abuse or neglect, and more.
  4. Reduce symptomology for anxiety, depression, aggression, opposition, inattention, and mood instability by repairing primary attachment.
  5. Determine the role that depression, anxiety, bipolar, ADHD, ODD and other traumas have in contributing to attachment trauma.
  6. Facilitate relationship building leading to strong foundations for future connections.


  • 4 Styles of Attachment
    • Research of Bowlby and Ainsworth
      • Secure
      • Ambivalent
      • Avoidant
      • Disorganized
    • Symptoms of Maladaptive Attachment
  • Neurobiology of Attachment
    • How the brain categorizes attachment
    • Changing the brain in attachment
    • Assessing Attachment Style
      • Adult Assessment Inventory for parents
      • Strange Situation Procedure for young children
      • Manchester Child Attachment Story Task for children
      • Child Attachment Interview for older children and teens
  • Psychosocial Assessment and Identifying the Impact of Trauma on Attachment
    • Recognize factors in the child’s history
      • Abuse and neglect
      • Abandonment
      • Impact of parent’s attachment style
      • Substance abuse in caregiver
      • Mental health disorders in caregivers
      • Foster care/adoption
      • Relation to other traumas
Trauma-Informed Attachment Symptomology
  • Attachment trauma that complicates and intensifies symptoms
  • Diagnosis that can contribute to attachment trauma
    • Depression
    • Anxiety
    • ADHD
    • ODD
    • Bipolar
    • Other Traumas
Attachment Focused Interventions – Play, Art, CBT
  • Repair Connection
    • The use of art/creative interventions
    • Talking points
    • Collaborative problem solving
  • Strengthen Relationships
    • Physical activities
    • Quality time activities
    • Face to face interactions
  • Increase Felt Safety
    • Trust building activities
    • Establishing safety plans
    • Identifying family system dysfunction and repair strategies
  • Trust-Based Parenting
    • Re-do’s
    • Time ins
    • Reframing
  • Establishing Supportive Attachments
    • Brainstorming effective supports
    • Clarifying needs
    • Building attachment-based support systems
  • Attachment as a Coping Strategy
    • Interventions to increase connections
    • Leaning on social supports
    • Groups – the force of understanding
The Role of the Therapeutic Relationship in Attachment
  • Building attachment focused therapeutic rapport
  • The role model
  • The cheer leader
  • Therapist self care

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychologists
  • Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Couples Therapists
  • School Guidance Counselors
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Teachers
  • Case Managers

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