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A lot of people wonder if trauma therapy is possible if we dissociate. Many of us need support because we are dealing with PTSD from an accident, or an assault or something entirely different. Today, Dr. Alexa Altman and I talk about how important staying present is when working in trauma therapy. If you remember from our last few videos we talk about how we need to stay in the resilient zone in order to reprocess, so if we are dissociating that can definitely slow the process.

But to answer the question, yes we can be in trauma therapy if we struggle with dissociation or derealization, but we should be working with a trauma specialist. Alexa states how important it is that we work with a specialist because they need to know how to keep us present and understand that moving too quickly in trauma therapy can be harmful.

I also talk about my experience and that I refer out when we get stuck and aren’t making any progress or if we are stuck in a cycle of trying to talk through the same traumas over and over. That would be your own signal as well, to know when you maybe need to find someone else, preferably a specialist.

The most important thing to remember is that you have the right to see someone who specializes in what you are working on! Don’t be afraid to ask what a therapists specialization is or if they have worked with a certain issue before. That way you can ensure that you are getting the help you need and deserve! And yes you can work in trauma therapy if you dissociate. Just make sure you are seeing someone who understands it. I know many of us worry about who we need to see and why, and I hope this video answered some of your questions. Xox

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I’m Kati Morton, a licensed therapist making Mental Health videos – Depression, Eating Disorders, Anxiety, Self-Harm and more! Mental health shouldn’t have a stigma attached to it. You’re worth the fight!

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