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Obsessions, Ruminations and Intrusive Thoughts

An online webinar 

Speaker: Christiane Sanderson

Date: 3 February 2022, Thursday
Location: Online streaming only (
all our webinar tickets now include complimentary access to a video recorded version for 1 year)
Times: 6:00pm to 9:00pm, London, UK time
CPD hours: 3

Early bird ticket price per delegate for online streaming + video recording of the event: £56

Webinar attendance links can now be downloaded directly from your ticket.

For more information on how to access webinar joining links, handouts and video recordings please click here

Obsessions, ruminations and recurrent intrusive thoughts are not just causative factors for both anxiety and shame, but also contribute to a continual increase in emotional discomfiture over a period of time. Our clients can experience an overwhelming fear of disintegration, struggle to distinguish reality from inner fears, prone to expect catastrophic events and also harbour a deep distrust for the therapist. In conspicuous manifestations they are compelled to perform physical rituals or in unseen manifestations, go through an endless loop of intrusive thoughts – hoping to gain some temporary relief.

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Full Course Information

As an example, up to 25 per cent of individuals with OCD are known to attempt suicide at least once. For therapists, the therapeutic process can actually be even more challenging for clients without overt behavioural rituals – where the manifestation is one of covert OCD or ‘Pure O’ and can consist of repugnant thoughts involving children, sex, violence and religion.

This engaging, intellectually stimulating and therapeutically oriented webinar by Christiane Sanderson draws on a range of perspectives from CBT, psychodynamic and trauma-informed practices – to explore how intrusive thoughts and ruminations could be ways of managing internalised negative childhood memories and experiences; and are attempts at self-soothing – essentially ways by which clients are attempting to gain control through rigid and inflexible thinking.

Specifically, we consider:

  • The spectrum & nature of obsessions, ruminations and intrusive thoughts
  • The key differences in manifestations between overt and covert OCD
  • The functions of OCD, covert compulsions and repugnant thoughts
  • Links to cognitive processing and early childhood experiences / trauma
  • Managing endless cycles of self-shaming strategies in which clients are held hostage to emotional reasons and catastrophisation
  • How shame and reasoning difficulties can lead to fear and distrust of oneself and others
  • The origin of reasoning difficulties and the reduced ability to differentiate between reality and fear
  • Therapeutic approaches drawn from CBT, psychodynamic and trauma-informed domains

About the speaker

Christiane Sanderson BSc, MSc. is a senior lecturer in Psychology at the University of Roehampton, of London with 26 years of experience working with survivors of childhood sexual abuse and sexual violence. She has delivered consultancy, continuous professional development and professional training for parents, teachers, social workers, nurses, therapists, counsellors, solicitors, the NSPCC, the Catholic Safeguarding Advisory Committee, the Methodist Church, the Metropolitan Police Service, SOLACE, the Refugee Council, Birmingham City Council Youth Offending Team, and HMP Bronzefield.

She is the author of Counselling Skills for Working with Shame, Counselling Skills for Working with Trauma: Healing from Child Sexual Abuse, Sexual Violence and Domestic Abuse, Counselling Adult Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse, 3rd edition, Counselling Survivors of Domestic Abuse, The Seduction of Children: Empowering Parents and Teachers to Protect Children from Child Sexual Abuse, and Introduction to Counselling Survivors of Interpersonal Trauma, all published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers. She has also written The Warrior Within: A One in Four Handbook to Aid Recovery from Sexual Violence; The Spirit Within: A One in Four Handbook to Aid Recovery from Religious Sexual Abuse Across All Faiths and Responding to Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse: A pocket guide for professionals, partners, families and friends for the charity One in Four for whom she is a trustee.


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