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Speaking the Unspeakable: When a client cannot give voice to their narrative: Video Course

Speaking the Unspeakable: When a client cannot give voice to their narrative: Video Course

Individuals who have been traumatised, shamed, stigmatised and / or marginalised are often rendered speechless. This manifestation can be present in our clinical settings across a spectrum of childhood and adulthood experiences including being sexually or physically abused, neglected, living with domestic abuse, having a parent with mental health problems, having survived severe bullying / subjugation, faced overwhelming racism and / or discrimination regarding gender and sexuality. In most cases, the client feels silenced by the perpetrator(s), feels burdened by the need to keep a secret, believe that they are living a double life and be firmly convinced that the risk of speaking the unspeakable can have severe consequence of further punishment, abandonment, exclusion, and shame.

Video course packs, including all notes are available immediately on booking. The access links are part of your ticket. Online video access remains available for 1 year from the date you receive the video course.

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There is no known commercial support for this programme.

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$152.52

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Course Credits

CPD: 5 / CE: 5

Speaker(s)

Christiane Sanderson

Course length in hours

5 hrs

Full course information

This one-day training workshop looks at the range of experiences in both childhood and adulthood that can prevent people from talking about what happened to them and explores:

  • The impact of being silenced and needing to keep secrets on individuals and how this compromises their sense of self and the lived experience of needing to lead a double life
  • The coercive and controlling tactics used by those who silence to ensure that the secret remains intact such as the use of power, deception, gaslighting, scapegoating and deflected shame to distort reality
  • How this impacts on the individual and what they have to do to adapt to keeping the secret and manage their own confusion about reality
  • How shame and self-blame make it hard to legitimise their experiences and how disavowing the experiences can lead to dissociation and denial
  • In addition, the fear of exposure and the concomitant shame can lead to complicity and duplicity, lying, manipulation and self-deception in the attempt to cover up – which can further compromise the sense of self, integrity and relationships

As practitioners we need to ensure we can provide a safe therapeutic space in which survivors of abuse and clients who have been marginalised through discrimination and stigmatisation can give voice to the unspeakable and make sense of what happened to them. Through our therapeutic endeavours, our goal is to help them give voice to the inchoate and develop a more coherent narrative and sense of self. To facilitate this, we will look at creating a supportive environment free from shame and judgement in which they can disclose their experiences and break the silence in order to reclaim reality and their authentic sense of self. We will discuss the range of experiences that render individuals unable to give voice to the unspeakable and look at how practitioners can encourage clients to give voice through sensitively timed and paced disclosure, how to work with dissociated and split off experiences or self-states, and to develop an integrated cohesive narrative in which they can give voice to what was once unspeakable.

Our learning objectives at this workshop are:

  • Describe the tactics used by perpetrators to ensure silence and secrecy, consider the role of shame and deflected shame
  • Describe the impact of being silenced on the self and relationships
  • Identify how to provide a safe therapeutic space to speak the unspeakable and give voice to their lived experience to facilitate disclosure and enable clients  to reclaim reality
  • Discuss how to work with dissociated and split off experiences or self-states

© nscience 2022 / 2023

What's included in this course

What you’ll learn

We will look at how practitioners can encourage clients to give voice through sensitively timed and paced disclosure, how to work with dissociated and split off experiences or self-states, and to develop an integrated cohesive narrative in which they can give voice to what was once unspeakable.

Learning objectives

  • Describe the tactics used by perpetrators to ensure silence and secrecy, consider the role of shame and deflected shame
  • Describe the impact of being silenced on the self and relationships
  • Identify how to provide a safe therapeutic space to speak the unspeakable and give voice to their lived experience to facilitate disclosure and enable clients  to reclaim reality
  • Discuss how to work with dissociated and split off experiences or self-states

About the speaker(s)

Christiane Sanderson BSc, MSc. is an Honorary Senior Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Roehampton, of London with 35 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. Her next book, The Taboo of Sibling Sexual Abuse: Working with Adult Survivors is out soon with nscience publishing house.

nscience UK is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. nscience UK maintains responsibility for this program and its content.

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