Workshops 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Please be aware that the schedule reflects the Eastern Time Zone. Be sure to mark your schedules according to your time zone. During our live event, the event platform, Juno, will automatically adjust to reflect session times in your time zone.
AAMFT Clinical Guidelines for LGBTQIA-Affirming Marriage and Family Therapy
Erica Hartwell, PhD
Christi McGeorge, PhD
AAMFT's Clinical Guidelines for LGBTQIA-Affirming Marriage and Family Therapy outline how marriage and family therapists practice in an affirming, inclusive, ethical, and competent way with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA) people. In particular, these guidelines provide instructions for what MFTs do or do not do in their clinical practice when working with LGBTQIA clients. These guidelines should be considered a starting point for MFTs. We have written these guidelines with the hope of illuminating what is possible and necessary in our field. Although we understand that many additional steps are needed for these practices to become commonplace, we hope to provide a vision of what systemic practices with LGBTQIA clients could be if, as a field, we committed ourselves to providing competent and ethical services to all clients.
The aim of the guidelines for clinical practice with LGBTQIA clients is to center the experiences of people most impacted by cisheterosexism in the practice of MFT and ensuring that they are treated as fully human by all MFTs.
The guidelines are organized into five pillars:
- Intersectional: People exist within interlocking and overlapping systems of identity, power, privilege, and oppression that inform their lived experiences. This pillar provides guidance on how to examine, understand, and provide awareness and acceptance of the unique intersectional identities of MFTs and the clients we serve.
- Systemic: A systemic worldview places the individual and their presenting concerns within the context of important relationships, larger systems, and intersecting power structures. This pillar considers the role of larger systems in the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of LGBTQIA clients.
- Relational: Individuals exist in relation to others and relational dynamics are influenced by factors across multiple social systems. This pillar acknowledges the influence of relationships across global, national, community, family, and individual levels.
- Liberatory: MFTs have engaged in practices that have done great harm to LGBTQIA communities due to the systemic forces of cisheterosexism, and thus this pillar requires that we liberate ourselves as therapists from these systems of oppression in order to provide competent, ethical, inclusive, and affirmative services to members of LGBTQIA communities. This pillar seeks to both acknowledge the important self-of-the-therapist work that all MFTs are called to engage in and discuss the importance of labeling and preventing practices that have and do cause harm to LGBTQIA clients.
- Transformative: A transformative paradigm is, by its nature, in flux and relational. In this pillar, MFTs are invited to dismantle internalized forms of supremacism through accountability and reflexivity. Because internal change is not sufficient without systemic change, this pillar empowers MFTs to transform the communities we live in, the educational systems we are trained within, and the policies that govern us.
This workshop, presented by Guideline authors, will explore these five pillars as a starting point for participants to practice in an affirming, inclusive, ethical, and competent way with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual (LGBTQIA) people.
This session will be followed with a Learning Lab from 12:15 – 1:15pm to give participants an opportunity for discussion and Q & A with the authors.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to understand the scope of the guidelines as it pertains to practice with LGBTQIA clients.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to distinguish the five pillars as outlined in the guidelines.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to establish a starting point in which to work confidently with LGBTQIA clients.
Medicare 101: Federal Healthcare Policy Changes and Treating Medicare Beneficiaries
Carol Podgorski, PhD
In this session, learn about recent federal regulatory and policy changes that will impact MFTs, including proposed changes to the Medicare “incident to” rule that allows MFTs to provide services under supervision to Medicare enrollees. The second part of this session will provide an overview of the various settings and populations available for treatment of Medicare beneficiaries; current national models of care for the age 65+ population and what systemic therapists can bring to them; and a snapshot of clinical and DEI considerations for MFTs to consider when working with this population.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to understand policies allowing some MFTs to treat Medicare enrollees under supervision and upcoming changes in these policies.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify ways in which MFT skill sets can enhance care for the Medicare population in a variety of clinical settings.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify at least 2 specific approaches to working with the Medicare population that promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Remote Therapeutic Monitoring: Increasing The Efficiency of Systemic Therapy
In this session, Alex will define remote therapeutic monitoring (RTM) and outline how it could be applied in systemic therapy, as well as discuss how systemic therapists are uniquely situated to implement and benefit from remote therapeutic monitoring. He will present multiple studies that outline the clinical benefits of RTM for clients, present how RTM could decrease burnout among therapists, and provide a business model that demonstrates how RTM could increase therapists monthly recurring revenue.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to educate attendees on the nature and potential impact of remote therapeutic monitoring on systemic therapy.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to provide attendees with a business model that would increase monthly recurring revenue by leveraging RTM.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to present evidence that RTM improves clinical outcomes and could reduce therapist burnout.
Use of Ecosystemic Structrual Family Therapy to Enhance Supervision
Pinky Mehta, LMFT
Systemic supervision strives to support the developing systemic therapist to work in the best interest of the child and family. Professionals must commit to a program of professional growth and development. Examining the supervisor, supervisee, and family’s social ecology guides supervisors to maintain a systemic focus, practice adherence, and develop competence within your professional role and function. First, The supervisor strives to craft a relationship where the supervisee feels secure, wanted, and cared for. Second, rather than reinforcing dependency, the supervisor as an effective leader creates a process that reinforces the clinician’s habit in adhering to Ecosystemic structural family therapy. Finally, the supervisor creates a process of deliberate learning by foster a collaborative relationship.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to maintain a systemic focus by understanding how my social ecology impacts the supervisory and therapeutic relationship.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to practice adherence by understanding what supervisees are doing or not doing based on their signature themes.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to support supervisees to develop competence within their professional role and function.
Rewriting the Mother & Teen Daughter Story
Hilary M. Truong, LPC
There are stages in the mother-daughter relationship that are passed through over the life of the relationship. Mothers and adult daughters reach out for support when they feel stuck in one of these life stages. Many mothers and daughters need to go back to the adolescence stage to work through the pain, shame and blame that they have carried for years. As a trained family and play therapist who worked with teen girls for 13 years, I knew there was an opportunity to heal this dynamic early on to prevent years of pain.
This session is the third in a three-part series on Mother-Daughter Attachment Dynamics. In this session, I will share why the adolescence stage of the mother-daughter relationship can be particularly challenging. General knowledge is that teen girls are difficult, and they feel every ounce of this belief. They’re moody, selfish, insecure, and hard to understand. Often mothers, who are already overwhelmed with pressure and high expectations, sacrifice their relationship with their daughter in favor of peace in the family.
In my work with hundreds of teen girls and their mothers I have flipped this script. Daughters feel understood, accepted, and honored for who they are at their core. Mothers feel understood for the sacrifice they have dutifully given in hopes that it will improve their dynamic. From here I give mothers the tools and understanding of how to protect their relationship through the teen years. Daughters are given the ‘why’ behind the wall they’ve hit with their mother to realize there are very real reasons why they struggle.
I will share how I help mothers and daughters release the blame and shame to become a team pushing back against the pressures society places on them. I will explain what mothers and teen daughters need from each other, so that they can move through the teen years feeling loved and understood.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify the causes of breakdowns between mothers and teen daughters.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to understand what teen daughters need from their mothers in order to have a healthy relationship through the adolescent years.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to apply knowledge about the pressure and expectations on women and how this affects the mother-teen daughter relationship.
Neurobiology and Treatment of Relationships
Harvey Joanning, PhD
This session on The Neurobiology and Treatment of Relationships wilI focus on how neurobiology and endocrinology drive intimate human behavior along with strategies for assisting individuals, couples and families to cope with relationships issues. Seven primal emotional brain systems and accompanying feelings and hormones will be outlined including detailed images. A brief life review of the neurobiology of parenting, sex therapy, and divorce adjustment therapy will be included.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to distinguish the seven primary human emotion brain systems.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify the affective feelings generated by primary emotion brain systems.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to outline strategies for treating relationships based on primary emotions exhibited by clients.
Working with Transgenerational Families in Hong Kong
Irene Kam, FHKCPsych., FHKAM (Psychiatry)
Cindy, Tam, FHKCPsych., FHKAM (Psychiatry)
Wai-Yung Lee, PhD
In this presentation, the presenters will feature Dr. Wai-Yung Lee’s keynote presentation, originally presented at the Australian Association for Family Therapy Annual Conference. This presentation will articulate her work with trans-generational families as indicated in her journal article, “Working Trans-generationally: A Clinical Discussion on Family Dynamics and Treatment”. This body of work is based on the clinical data obtained at the Trans-generational Center established by the Lee Kum Kee Family Foundation at the Asian Academy of Family Therapy. Following that, our Faculty Members, Drs. Irene Kam and Cindy Tam will conduct the discussion based on the issues that arose from the presentation and answer any questions from the audience.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to understand that many individual mental health problems can reflect unresolved conflict in transgenerational relationships.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to appreciate that transgenerational theory is useful in understand the link between generations.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to have insight into the treatment of process in working with transgenerational families.
Learning Labs 12:15 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.
AAMFT Clinical Guidelines for LGBTQIA-Affirming MFT: Practice Discussion
Erica Hartwell, PhD
Christi McGeorge, PhD
These guidelines are a call to action for the field and profession of marriage and family therapy (MFT), the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT), training programs, supervisors, educators, students, scholars, researchers, and clinicians. In addition, these guidelines can and will be helpful for anyone who practices from a systemic therapy lens.
Join our authors for this in-depth discussion on incorporating the AAMFT Clinical Guidelines for LGBTQIA-Affirming MFT into your practice.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify LGBTQIA-affirming practices.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able understand what to do and not to do when working with LGBTQIA clients.
- Based on the contents of this session, I am able to identify next steps to increase my own capacity for affirmative practice.
Medicare 102: MFTs in Medicare Legislation is Advancing and How to Help
This year, Congress is starting to move forward with legislation that would allow MFTs to serve as Medicare eligible providers. In this session, speakers will provide an overview of the mental health services offered by Medicare. Learn about recent progress with Congress in moving forward with legislation that would add LMFTs and counselors as Medicare providers. Learn how to take effective actions to support MFTs in Medicare, including how to call your Members of Congress. Finally, this session will end with an opportunity for attendees to contact their Members of Congress to advocate for MFTs as Medicare providers.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to understand the need to have MFT’s included in Medicare.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to speak confidently on the need for MFTs in Medicare and formulate and express my opinions regarding Medicare confidently to policymakers.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to move forward with an action plan to call Members of Congress on this topic.
The 10,000 Foot View: Leadership from a Systemic Perspective
Erin Schaefer, IMFT-S
Systems training has many applications, and one of those is to organizations as a whole. When operating as a leader within an organization, it is easy to become dominant (ignoring the needs of others) or to align oneself with specific people or groups. It is perhaps even natural to want to be liked or to simply do what you think is best while ignoring the potential impact on other people or aspects of the organization. It is much more difficult to continually maintain a sense of self while also understanding the organization as a whole and how decisions can impact overall functioning. Understanding the complexity of how to view oneself within an organization, how to respond to conflict, and how to make decisions while also holding the entire organization in sight is essential to being a good leader. Through a systemic perspective, these essential skills of good leadership will be explored.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to understand how to apply systems theory concepts to organizations as a whole.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify my role as a leader within an organization and how to use my systemic lens when addressing conflict.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to evaluate my skills as a leader in making decisions which impact my area of supervision or even the organization as a whole.
The Hormone Factor in Mental Health: Bridging the Mind-body Gap
Linda M. Rio, MA
The endocrine system affects nearly all aspects of the physical body and interacts with emotions, and cognitions as well. Disruptions in the functioning of this internal system can cause effects in many areas including the external family system as well. Infertility, sexual dysfunction, cognitive changes, emotional lability, depression, anxiety are commonly reported in a population of those with pituitary disorders but also seen by almost all mental health clinicians so there are definitely challenges in both physical and mental health diagnosis as well as treatment. The effects on the family and other external systems are enormous. Clinicians are often unaware of how to discuss physical ailments but recognizing some key endocrine concepts can help in bridging the physical and emotional treatment worlds.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to explain to all clients the physiology of the stress response system for the purposes of greater self- empowerment and anxiety and trauma management.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify populations who are high-risk for pituitary and other neuroendocrine disorders and how these disorders can affect internal physiological systems as well as external family relational systems.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to provide sound resources for clients to get further information, if necessary.
The Art of the Progress Note: Refining and Simplifying Documentation
Elizabeth Irias, MS
This interactive session is geared at increasing clinicians’ understanding of the importance of Medical Necessity in clinical documentation, regardless of pay source (insurance, funding sources like MediCare, private pay, etc.) or work context (agency, private practice, school-based, etc.). This engaging discussion provides handy and easy-to-use strategies about how to conceptualize Medical Necessity and efficiently and simply integrate it into progress notes.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to list three or more key components of high-quality clinical progress notes.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to provide one or more definitions for the term ‘medical necessity’.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to describe how appropriate documentation of functional impairment relates to medical necessity determinations during audits/investigations.
Therapeutic Mobility: What Improvisational Comedy Can Teach Us
John M. Robbins, PhD
Improvisation comedy is a form of comedy that relies upon what is happening in the moment to drive a conversation, and ultimately a scene. In the marriage and family therapy field, it has been suggested that Improv games can be used to alleviate many mental health struggles, such as anxiety and stress (Drinko, 2021). This learning lab will focus on the therapist and how learning improvisation concepts can assist a therapist in improving the basic and advanced counseling skills, how to build more effective and connected relationships, increase their range and maneuverability by thinking on your feet, as well as adding a self-care element to therapists’ practices.
In this learning lab, the participants are introduced to the 4 main principles of Improvisation comedy. These four principles are:
- Using “Yes/And” in a conversation and not denying someone’s statements. AND “Yes” isn't enough. It is suggested that therapist’s must “Yes, and…” add to the discussion, taking the discussion further on an effective path.
- You don’t have to be funny and you do have to listen. Listening is a key aspect of improvisation because you are building on to the last thing that was said in the scene.
- You can look good if you make your partner look good. In improv, you do not have to be the star of the conversation to be an important participant.
- Tell a story. And when another troupe member is telling a story, “yes/and” with curiosity and compassion.
The facilitator will then connect these principles to the training of a therapist and the skills that therapist’s can build through the practice of these principles. Participants will then join in on improvisation games designed to highlight building relationship through using “yes/and,” maintaining curiosity and flexibility as a story is being told, and most importantly, designed to laugh and have a great time, keeping in mind the biggest rule of improv is there are no mistakes.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to connect the main principles of improvisational comedy to the basic and advanced skills in counseling.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to practice improvisation games that build on my range and maneuverability as a therapist.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to generalize the process of an improvisation scene into the skills of relationship building in the therapeutic process.
Systemic Optimism in School-based Practice during Complex Times
Kathleen Laundy, PsyD
Erin Cushing, LMFT
Schools have been profoundly affected by the coronavirus pandemic, as well as many other current events. For systemically trained clinicians, new understandings and opportunities have emerged for school-based practice that are cause for optimism, despite the challenges of these current events. Schools are shifting from a traditionally individualistic focus to incorporating more systemic understanding of what affects students’ ability to thrive and achieve.
There is a growing understanding and support for the interplay among physical, mental, and cultural health factors that affect student behavior. There is growing governmental funding to support students within school settings, where they spend the bulk of their time outside of the home. There are increasing opportunities for systemically trained mental health clinicians to practice in multidisciplinary teams in schools. This session will trace the growth of the Family Therapy in Schools Topical Interest Network as MFTs have joined school teams across the U.S. to support student achievement and resiliency.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to better identify the systemic variables that affect student achievement and resiliency.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to consider new ways to support children and families through schoolbased practice.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to utilize new skills for entering school-based practice.
Tele-Supervision Challenges and Interventions with Therapist In Training
Bahareh Sahebi, PsyD
Neil Venketramen, MS
The following presentation will explore the challenges faced by clinical supervisors in analyzing video tapes and will provide guidance on how to preform therapy session video analysis and supervisory feedback through the lens of the common factors of supervision and/or a specific therapy model.
The workshop will include a summary of video supervision research from the last decade, an introductory guide on helping students select video segments for analysis by their supervisors (including selecting video segments to improve cultural competency and systemic therapeutic skills).
Specifically, guidelines for clinical supervisors will be shared as a means to provide best practice for analysis and providing feedback on recorded video segments irrespective of their theorical supervision orientations.
Additionally, telesupervision tools for providing live supervision during sessions will be discussed as a way to help the trainees learn identify markers and track the therapeutic environment with interactional sequences.
The current presentation will be helpful to both group and individual clinical supervisors and supervisors who conduct co-therapy with trainees as means to encourage the utilization of using session video feedback as a best practice training tool in an increasing versatile teaching environment that includes telesupervision, as a way to improve the clinincal supervision outcomes.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to observe and identify key moments in the therapy session that forms the basis for supervisee feedback.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to help supervisees identify and work on supervisee self of the therapist challenges.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to help supervisees identify best practices for using teletherapy interventions.
Workshops 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
EFT with L or G or B or T or Q or + Relationships
Robert Allan, PhD
Andrea Wittenborn, PhD
Caitlin Edwards, MA
Emotionally Focused Therapy is an attachment-based therapy that engages with underlying emotional and systemic processes which contribute to relationship distress (Johnson, 2019). The process of the relationship's journey through therapy is clearly outlined in three stages and nine steps, and a repeated intervention sequence—the EFT Tango—is relevant throughout all stages and steps. Systematic reviews and meta-analyses show EFT as effective in both facilitating change during treatment and in maintaining improvements following treatment (Rathgeber et al., 2019; Wiebe & Johnson, 2016).
Like all research about couple/relationship therapy approaches (Spengler, DeVore, Spengler, & Lee, 2019), EFT has not reported samples that include same sex/same gender relationships. Regardless, there is substantial clinical experience using EFT with L and G and B and Q and + relationships. This presentation reports on the expertise gathered from decades of clinical experience using EFT with LGBTQ+ relationships. Using a Delphi method, we surveyed over 30 therapists about what changes, additions, or adaptations they make in their EFT work with L or G or B or Q or + relationships.
The presentation will focus on what aspects of assessment need to be included when working from an EFT approach followed by a detailed review of what to consider at each step and stage of EFT with LGBTQ+ relationships.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify three elements to include in my assessment when working with LGBTQ+ relationships.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify two impacts of minority stress on LGBTQ+ relationships.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to implement three adaptations in my EFT work with LGBTQ+ relationships.
How Chronic Stress and Complex Trauma Impact Adolescents and their Families in the Juvenile Justice System
Domonique Rice, PhD
This presentation will focus on the adolescent population and their families involved in the justice system. We will explore ways to identify, treat, and advocate for adolescents and their families.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to: Understand and Identify the impact of Chronic Stress and Complex Trauma in the Juvenile Justice System..
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to: Identify ways to incorporate tangible skills and techniques to assist adolescents dealing with stress and trauma.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to: Identify ways to advocate for adolescents involved in the Juvenile Justice System.
Experiences and Meanings Among Couples in Online Therapy: Rethinking Telepresence
Alon Aviram, MS
In recent years, more couples and therapists have moved from in-person settings to virtual clinics. The purpose of this presentation is to examine this transition from the perspective of couples and therapists who have participated in online couple therapy. Using the findings from 36 in-depth, semi-structured interviews with 18 Hebrew-speaking couples living in Israel and abroad, as well as focus groups of a total of 15 therapists, we describe, analyze, and theorize the experiences and meanings of this transition. The therapeutic alliance is at the core of our analysis, leading to three aspects identified between couples and therapists: intimacy, limited care, and body language. Each aspect will be conceptualized and demonstrated using interview excerpts. Finally, clinical implications will be discussed.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to learn about the therapeutic relationship that couples may experience in online couple therapy.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to plan interventions to assist couples in online couple therapy who are having difficulty creating a bond with the therapist.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to engage in conversation, both with myself as a therapist and with clients about the meanings and influences of being in online couple therapy.
Resiliency Through Relationship: Helping Families Heal from Experiences of Developmental Trauma
Tara Byers, EdD
The current training is designed to provide foundational information on developmental trauma and its’ impact on children, caregivers, and parenting. The goal of the training is to support clinician understanding of Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and their impact on human development. Clinician and caregiver attunement/responsiveness will be explored as an important focus of clinical intervention pivotal in the development of resiliency and treatment progress. The hand model of the brain will be reviewed to conceptualize autonomic nervous system state changes. Finally, the 3 Rs (Regulate, Relate, Reason) and the window of tolerance will be explored to support clinician intervention effectiveness with children and families who have experienced developmental trauma.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify the 10 adverse childhood experiences and their impact on wellness.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to use the 3 Rs to intervene with family members.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to describe the importance of maintaining my own window of tolerance in working with family members.
Child Abuse and Neglect: A Comprehensive Approach to Trauma-Informed Care
Jennifer Vargas Pemberton, PhD
This workshop will present prevalence information and the developmental impact of sexual abuse and trauma on neurobiological, emotional, behavioral, and social functioning. A comprehensive approach to trauma-informed care will be discussed that includes evidence-based therapy models, innovative group treatment strategies, and a multidisciplinary service delivery model. Vicarious trauma will be addressed for clinicians working with child abuse and self-care strategies identified.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify the prevalence of child abuse and the impact of trauma on neurobiological, behavioral, emotional, and social functioning.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify what trauma-informed care means and implement innovative, holistic, and comprehensive treatment strategies for children and adolescents with traumatic experiences.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to incorporate self-care strategies to address vicarious trauma.
Honing Your Resilience, Fighting Compassion Fatigue: Self Care Practices That Work
Kyle Killian, PhD
What predicts our resilience vs. compassion fatigue and burnout in our work as clinicians? This presentation describes the impacts of social support, emotional self-awareness, work environment and self care on our ability to build resilience. Attendees will assess their vicarious resilience and learn effective self-care strategies.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to understand the phenomenon of vicarious resilience (VR).
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to assess my own vicarious resilience and use the information toward improving my own self-care.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to engage in effective self-care practices to sustain my well-being.
The Impact Of Hip-Hop Culture On Body Image In Black Women
Charlece Bishop, LMFT
While there are many studies on the impact of social media on body image, there is a dearth of literature referencing the influence of hip-hop culture on Black women’s body image. Hip-Hop’s depictions of Black women create a specific image of what is portrayed as sexually appealing and yet is unattainable for most black women. The evolution of hip-hop has led Black women's body standards to lean towards that for White women which is less consistent with Black culture's acceptance of a curvier ideal. This has led Black women to become more pressured to conform to hip-hop's exemplar of beauty.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to explain the historical and cultural influences of Hip Hop.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to explain how Black women are portrayed in Hip-Hop.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to utilize at least two psychoeducational tools and techniques when conducting therapy with Black women struggling with body image.
Workshops 2:45 p.m. – 3:45 p.m.
Under Pressure: Exploring the Importance of the Couple Bond for Complex Families and Remarriage
Jay S. Daughtry, MMFT
Training will focus on complex family dynamics, healthy communication and conflict resolution, as well as the facilitation of a strong couple bond and the development of family identity, all in the context of remarriage and step families.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to understand the importance of strong couple bonds to the success of remarriage and will be prepared to facilitate the intentional cultivation of intimacy through healthy communication and conflict resolution.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to recognize familial “hot spots” by applying knowledge of competing attachments in assessing negative interactional patterns.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to facilitate the process of family definition through empowering couples/families to construct an Identity Pyramid that leads to actionable family function.
Focus on Family Systems in Elder Care: A Critical Social Determinant of Health
Carol Podgorski, PhD
Family functioning and relationships have been shown repeatedly to be predictors of health outcomes across populations and health conditions. While family support is often an integral component of care for older adultl., most elder care models focus almost exclusively on the older adult with little regard for the relationships in which they are embedded. Using case examples this presentation will highlight the utility of conceptualizing the family system as a social determinant of health and will describe how family factors affect health equity and health outcomes In elder care.
The presentation will include a discussion of barriers to incorporating family assessment into elder care as wen as potential strategies that could facilitate adoption of this practice.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to define social determinant of health and explain how the family system fits into this paradigm.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to provide at least two examples of how family systems influence health care outcomes in elder care.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify at least two facilitators and two barriers to incorporating assessment of family systems into health care delivery practices with older adult populations.
Creating Effective Safety Plans: Safety Planning as Treatment Planning
Nathan D. Croy, LCMFT
It is time to think about safety in a new way. A holistic idea of safety that includes spiritual, sexual, economic, social, relational, physical, and psychological aspects of people allows for the creation of more effective and personalized care. The idea of safety planning is not disparate from treatment planning and, as research has shown, is only effective when integrated with treatment. This presentation will teach practitioners how to create meaningful treatment/safety plans that will increase insight and autonomy in individuals and families by looking at the history of safety planning, obstacles to successful implementations, current research, and instruction on how to create their own safety plan
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to describe the history of safety planning.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to get buy-in from clients to actively engage in the creation of the safety plan.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to complete a meaningful and individualized safety plan with individuals and families.
Association of Pregnancy-related Stigma and Intimate Partner Violence with Anxiety and Depression Among Adolescents: Opportunities for Systemic/Family Interventions with Teenage Mothers in Uganda
Ronald Asiimwe, MS
Chi-Fang Tseng, PhD
Teenage pregnancy and its associated psychological and health consequences is an important challenge that continues to affect many families in sub-Saharan Africa. Globally, research shows that teenage pregnancy is one of the most devastating reproductive health issues for women, contributing 23% of the overall burden of disease due to pregnancy and childbirth. Teenage mothers are at higher risk of developing various mental health problems. In this proposal, we present findings from our study that examined the associations between pregnancy-related stigma, sexual and physical violence, and psychological distress among pregnant adolescents in Tororo, Uganda. Data come from a convenience sample of 100 teenagers who were pregnant and attending care at a pre- and postnatal clinic in Eastern Uganda. Results show higher levels of anxiety and depression symptoms are associated with higher report of pregnancy-related stigma (Beta= -.24, SE = .12, p < .05, β = -.21). Further, pregnant adolescents who reported being victims of physical violence also reported higher levels of anxiety and depression symptoms. The effect of contextual factors (e.g. socio-cultural factors) on mental health among teenage mothers and the need to design family interventions for these mothers will be discussed in our presentation.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to describe socio-cultural drivers of teenage pregnancy as well as drivers of stigma, anxiety, and depression among teenage mothers in rural a Ugandan context.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to examine available evidence-based systemic interventions for reducing stigma, anxiety, and depression among teenage mothers in Uganda.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to apply the tenets of systemic family therapy to examine how evidence-based family/relational interventions can improve the psychological and relational wellbeing of teenage mothers and their families.
Therapy that Works: A Unifying Framework for Family Therapy
Diane Gehart, PhD
The Therapy that Works Unifying Framework is a comprehensive framework that synthesizes the theoretical and research knowledge base of the field. This framework is not a theory that explains why or how psychological or relational problems develop and are resolved. Instead, it is a system for doing that provides an easy-to-use roadmap for how to do therapy well. The system involves six key components:
- Self-of-the-therapist development: Cultivating personal wellness and clear, reflective states of mind
- Collaborative connecting: Entering the client’s meaning-making system with minimal bias
- 4-level conceptualization of the problem: Assessment of problem patterns at the behavioral, emotional, cognitive/Identity, and societal levels
- Evidence-informed treatment planning: Using the evidence-base to inform treatment options
- Evidence-informed intervention: Identifying interventions that align with client needs and preferences
- 4-level conceptualization of solutions: Assessment of “what works,” solidifying preferred identities within larger relational and community systems, and fostering long-term whole-person wellness
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify the six elements of the Therapy that Works Unifying Framework for Family Therapy.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to describe the four levels for conceptualizing interactional cycles related to the “problem” and “solution.”
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to better articulate how to relate to clients in ways that minimize therapist bias and increase understanding from within the client’s meaning-making system.
Walk-in/Single-Session Therapy in Family Therapy Services
Monte Bobele, PhD
This workshop offers a unique model for providing extremely brief family therapy services that takes advantage of clients’ readiness for change and increases accessibility to mental health services. Researchers have suggested that psychotherapy can be most effective if begun at the point that clients are most motivated to change; however, many current models of service delivery unintentionally place barriers between clients and family therapists. “Walk-ins welcome” signs are so common our everyday lives that we barely give them our attention. Yet, for many therapists, walking in may seem an unusual way to deliver services. I will provide a brief overview of “walking in” as a service delivery model that uses single-session therapy as an effective way to reduce waiting lists, counter the down-time no-shows cause, and provide needed services to the community. This model aims to provide a useful, single therapeutic encounter in the initial contact with a client. The aim is for workshop participants to leave able to organize and conduct culturally sensitive, cost-effective WI/SST in their home agencies and practices. Participants will learn: how to establish WI services in their practices; the principles of SST in WI services; and how to set appropriate client goals for SST.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to understand how WI/SST can be implemented, modified, and expanded in working with individuals, couples, and families my practice.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to leave the training with enough of a beginning understanding of SST's therapeutic principles to begin to try them out in my own work with individuals, couples, and families.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to discuss the concept of single-session services and describe research that supports the rationale for their development.
Increasing Family Acceptance and Support with LGBQ+ Youth
Sabrina Valente, MA
This training explores how therapists can clinically support LGTBQ+ youths and their families by understanding the impact of “coming out,” belonging, and acceptance. Participants will come to understand common themes in an LGBQ+ youth’s coming out experience, understand how social ecology informs family response, understand how to create a safe space for youth in therapy, and understand how to work with caregivers who are rejecting.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify 4 common themes in the experience of coming out for LGBQ+ youth.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to Identify how social ecology informs past and current family assumptions and convictions regarding sexual orientation and gender identity.
- Based on the content of this session, I am able to identify how to work with caregivers who are rejecting their LGBG+ child.
Advancing Licensure Portability: The Path Ahead
In AAMFT’s recent MFT Workforce Study, multi-state licensure, easier portability, and interstate compacts were all issues heavily identified by respondents as areas of interest and needed attention. Join AAMFT staff for this session where we examine:
- Data from the workforce study as well as AAMFT’s study regarding the feasibility of an MFT Compact
- The various options as well as myths and misconceptions about them
- AAMFT’s proposed path forward
By attending this session, I will be able to:
- Identify legislative and policy approaches towards increased portability and parity for the MFT license
- Review data from recent industry studies regarding workforce trends and patterns
- Understand myths and misconceptions related to interstate licensure compacts and portability legislation