90 Minute Workshop

“i Love You, My Killer”: “invisible” Attachment Trauma Resulting in Adult Traumatic Bonding, and Healing Strategies

Monday, March 26
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Location: Salon 12

It has been observed that the quality of early parenting is linked to the infant's attachment security.
Growing research shows that adult inappropriate interactional patterns often find their roots in adverse childhood experiences that can be identified as “invisible” attachment trauma's.
Bowlby ( 1973) suggested that children suffering from insecure attachment internalize unintegrated internal working models of the caretaker as well as of themselves.
As a result of “invisible” attachment trauma, insecure attachment is reflecting the chaotic nature of these representations and the lack of integration.
Due to their immature copingmechanisms, children are identifying with the perpetrator and internalize both the “good” and the “bad” objects, as an act of defense and to maintain the attachment relationship.
James (1994) described this relationship between child and perpetrator as a subcategory of a disorganized attachment: a trauma bond.
Hazan and Shaver (1987) argued that adult romantic relationships are attachments in which the different attachment styles of infants continue to exist into adulthood.
In these adult relationships, embedded in “invisible” attachment trauma, partners have the compulsion to repeat the trauma in which fear deepens attachment, and these feelings of intense attachment strengthen and maintain the trauma bond.
We can consider adult traumatic bonding as an unresolved form of insecure attachment (Saunders and Edelson, 1999).
In these matters, healing strategies include both attachment and trauma therapy.
Because trauma arousal may be neurologically addictive, neurobiological interventions are imperative.

Learning Objectives:

Doris D'hooghe

Traumacenter Belgium
Gent, Oost-Vlaanderen

As a psychotherapist, I am trained in Gestalt therapy, Group Therapy, Transpersonal Psychology and my training in child therapy was based on the integrative psychology.
Later on I became intrigued by trauma and its effects and took trainings in psychotraumatology. These different courses turned me into a therapist with a broad vision on pathology, its causes and opportunities to heal.
As I felt deeply interested in attachment issues, I became specialized in early childhood trauma in an attachment relationship.
Up till today, I’ve been working in my own private practice for 26 years, where I work with children, adolescents, adults, parents and elderly.
My work is based on attachment and trauma theories, therapy and a blend of integrative psychotherapy and neuroscience.
In my work, I carry a strong belief in the uniqueness and healing capabilities of my client, and focus on the therapeutic relationship, as I find it an important tool within the work I do.
I am also the founder of Traumacenter Belgium, a unique project in Belgium that mainly focuses on working with traumatized clients, on short term or in the long run, to help them recover and reestablish their daily lives. (www.traumacentrum .be)


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“i Love You, My Killer”: “invisible” Attachment Trauma Resulting in Adult Traumatic Bonding, and Healing Strategies

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