EFT Couple Therapy Training: COUPLES AND TRAUMA, Sharing Emotions to Soothe the Brain and Heart

Working with the Echoes of Trauma
in Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy (EFT):

How Sharing Emotions Soothes the Traumatized Brain and Heart

T. Leanne Campbell, Ph.D., R. Psychologist, Certified ICEEFT Trainer
Kathryn Rheem, Ed.D., LMFT, Certified ICEEFT Trainer

In this workshop participants will gain an understanding of the key theoretical underpinnings of the EFT model as well as practitioner-relevant insights into the primary interventions used to transform couples both personally and relationally. In addition to the traditional didactic format, the training emphasizes session videos that demonstrate the process of quieting the echoes of trauma, and increasing resilience to future stress and/or trauma.

Emotionally Focused Therapy for couples and families (EFT, Dr. Susan Johnson) is an empirically validated treatment approach that meets the gold standard set out by bodies such as the American Psychological Association (APA) and has been shown to be effective in assisting couples in both addressing trauma, and improving their relationship functioning.

In this workshop, and with an emphasis on video/in-session demonstrations as well as more traditional lecture format, participants will gain an understanding of some of the key theoretical underpinnings of the EFT model, as well as practitioner-relevant insight into the interventions that are used to transform couples both personally and relationally, quieting the echoes of trauma, and increasing resilience to future stress and/or trauma.

The echoes of unresolved trauma are most likely to be loudest and most disruptive to individuals’ emotional and social functioning in the context of intimate relationships. As we clinicians know, the key to healing trauma is being able to seek comfort and protection from a loved one. But for trauma survivors, who usually have no template for safe connection, and their partners, coping with triggers can create escalations. Working to help the trauma survivor reach open-heartedly and the partner respond vulnerably is the focus of this two-day training in the application of EFT with trauma survivor couples.

Emotional dysregulation, known as the hallmark of trauma, scrambles communication, blocks intimacy, and amplifies distress. This training emphasizes three key features in working with emotional echoes: clinical assessment and identification of various personal and relationship factors that impact clinical decision-making, the how of pacing intrapsychic work, and key EFT interventions central to working with emotion both intrapsychically and interpersonally.

In this training, the importance of the clinician’s ability to monitor and respond to client’s moment-to-moment experiences, especially extreme states of numbing, will be highlighted. You will come away with the knowledge of how to work intrapsychically piece-by-piece with each partner in order to work interpersonally to create healing between them. Learn how to support the trauma survivor in cultivating courage to reach for comfort and protection (tension between fears and longings) and how to prepare partners to be responsive (an amazing privilege but also an extraordinary pressure for the partner of a trauma survivor). Learn how to stay in the process when clients become activated emotionally, a common outcome of trauma, and when, we, the clinicians, get triggered.

Through teaching, video presentation, and experiential learning, you’ll see how to use voice, reflection, and deepening interventions to help partners make contact, stay in contact in order to distill, and then share vulnerabilities with each other in order to break the familiar yet dreaded feeling of emotional isolation, a common result of enduring trauma.

Learning Objectives
By the end of the workshop, participants will have an increased understanding of:

  1. The impact of trauma from an attachment perspective, with attention to developmental factors, and with regard to mental health assessment and intervention more generally.
  2. How to work with trauma with couples, with attention to heightening and/or containing emotion, and working within the ‘therapeutic window’ both individually and relationally.
  3. How to work with emotion ‘moment-to-moment’ with the overall goal of facilitating bonding and trauma resolution, and positively and durably shifting affect regulation capacities, as well as models of self and other.

April 13 & 14, 2018

9 a.m.–5 p.m. each day.

Cost, Location, CEUs

Register early or be a
CCEFT member and save!

CCEFT Member:
Early Bird, by March 1, 2018:
Regular, after March 1st:

This workshop is open to all clinicians, EFT training is not required.

Loyola University*

Water Tower campus,
Corboy Law School building,
25 E. Pearson St.,
Chicago, IL 60611
*This program is not sponsored or endorsed by Loyola University

14 CEUs available for Social Workers, MFTs and LCPCs. (Psychologist CEUs pending)



Dr. T. Leanne Campbell, Ph.D.

Registered Psychologist
ICEEFT Certified Trainer

Dr. Campbell is co-director of the Vancouver Island Centre for EFT and Campbell & Fairweather Psychology Group, and is an Honorary Research Associate of Vancouver Island University.  Trained by Dr. Sue Johnson in the early 1990s, she has continued to focus on trauma, grief, and couple and family therapy since that time.  In addition to teaching and training in these areas, and working with hundreds of couples and families over the years, she also specializes in providing psychological assessments, as well as individual psychotherapy and crisis intervention services to client populations including active military and veterans and their families, first responders, injured workers, and individuals who have suffered various types of developmental trauma.  Known for her expertise in the area of trauma, Dr. Campbell has provided hundreds of psychological assessment reports for forensic/legal and personal injury matters being considered before various levels of Court.  She is also regularly called upon to provide expert opinion surrounding Canadian Forces Base, Veterans Affairs Canada, Royal Canadian Mounted Police/RCMP (and other first responder) cases, as well as consistently providing psychological evaluations for various insurance companies and bodies involved in adjudicating personal injury and other trauma-based claims.

K Rheem
Kathryn Rheem, Ed.D., LMFT

ICEEFT Certified Trainer and Supervisor

Kathryn is the Director of the Washington Baltimore Center for Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), where she also has a private practice. She works extensively with couples where one or both partners have endured trauma and has written and presented on the application of EFT with trauma numerous times.

In addition to teaching the special topics training of EFT + Trauma, Kathryn also is well known for teaching the Stage Two Change Events of EFT. After completing the first analysis of the Withdrawer Re-engagement Change Event for her dissertation, she teaches the process of coming alongside Withdrawers and their partners many times a year. She also recently released a Withdrawer Re-engagement Training Video and a Pursuer Softening Training Video.

Kathryn presents and teaches EFT and the Hold Me Tight Educational Program at many conferences such as the Psychotherapy Networker, AAMFT Annual Conference, and EFT Summit and trains mental health professionals in EFT many times a year in various locations across the U.S. and Europe (Dutch Defense Ministry; Danish, Swedish, Dutch, Flemish, & German mental health professionals). Kathryn has trained U.S. Army Chaplains & European Regional Medical Command in EFT and worked with military couples at installations in the U.S. & Germany. She consulted monthly with the Canadian Veterans Affairs for three years and continues to consult monthly for the U.S. Veterans Administration since 2011. Kathryn, along with the originator of EFT Dr. Sue Johnson, was a co-founder and co-director of Strong Bonds, Strong Couples, LLC, which provided EFT-based weekend retreats for Soldiers & Marines coming home from the wars Iraq and Afghanistan and their partners.

Kathryn was voted a Top Couples Therapist in Washington, D.C. by the Washingtonian magazine in December 2012. A clinical fellow and approved Supervisor of AAMFT, she has authored or co-authored ten articles/chapters on the application of EFT.