Strategies and Practices for Effective Intervention in Bereavement
Broadly speaking, we know that attachment style, and in particular, the security or insecurity of early attachment bonds, is a factor that helps us account for the considerable variation in people’s adaptation to loss. The connection between how people attach and how they respond to the loss of attachment is something that makes intuitive sense, and something that has been corroborated by research.
In this presentation, we will look at grief, and grief therapy, through the lens of attachment theory as formulated by John Bowlby and expanded by researchers and theoreticians in psychology, neuroscience, and related fields. We will look at how an understanding of our bereaved client’s attachment style can help us think through our approach to helping them grieve their loss, while also maintaining and strengthening their involvement with ongoing roles and relationships.
In this workshop we will discuss the implications of an attachment informed approach to grief therapy, with an emphasis on identifying elements that are specific to this approach, and those which are common to all effective grief therapy. Throughout the day, clinical vignettes will be used to illustrate the concepts presented, along with videotapes of client sessions.
Models of psychotherapeutic change are increasingly emphasizing the importance of emotional engagement in psychotherapy. We will consider what this means for the practice of grief therapy: that is, how do we cultivate emotional engagement with our clients? Are there specific skills that can help us do this? What does it mean to support the enhancement of people’s capacity to manage painful emotions, and how do we do this?
Professionals working with those experiencing grief and bereavement, such as community support workers, counsellors, therapists, psychologists, social workers, pastoral care workers, palliative care workers and other allied health professionals who are offering grief and loss support to clients.
At the conclusion of the workshop participants will be able to:
- Discuss research concerning the impact of early attachment experience on the capacity to establish and maintain healthy interpersonal relationships;
- Identify the role of attachment security and self- regulatory capacity in adaptation to loss;
- Describe the difficulties in adaptation to loss that have been associated with insecure attachment;
- Understand the obstacles that can arise in forming a strong and effective therapeutic bond with insecurely attached clients and how to address them to improve therapy outcomes;
- Learn about how to design treatment strategies that address specific attachment related impediments to the integration of loss.
Dr. Phyllis Kosminsky, PhD, FT, is a clinical social worker in private practice and at the Center for Hope in Darien, Connecticut, where her work focuses on grief, loss and trauma. Dr. Kosminsky has written on a range of topics related to bereavement and loss and lectures frequently on these subjects to professional and lay audiences. Her first book, Getting Back to Life When Grief Won’t Heal, draws on her fifteen years in the field and provides a description of the challenges that often accompany the loss of a loved one, as well as resources for moving through complicated grief. Dr. Kosminsky is a member of the International Work Group on Death, Dying and Bereavement and an active member of the Association for Death Education and Counseling and is a former Director of the association.
Dr. Kosminsky received her social work degree from Columbia University and her PhD in social welfare from Brandeis University. She is trained in Eriksonian hypnosis and in EMDR, a clinically proven method for treating trauma. A former member of the faculty at Northeastern University, Dr. Kosminsky continues to enjoy sharing her experience and knowledge with others. Dr. Kosminsky provided counselling services to grieving family members and survivors following the attacks on the World Trade Center, and her expertise is often sought by clinicians working with clients who have suffered a traumatic loss. Dr. Kosminsky, along with Dr. Jack Jordan is the author of the 2016 text, Attachment-Informed Grief Therapy: The Clinician's Guide to Foundations
ACGB member $260.00
Non-member price $330.00
Cancellation and Refund Policy
The Australian Centre for Grief and Bereavement reserves the right to
cancel education programs that do not achieve minimum participation, in
which case all fees will be refunded.
Registration cancellations will not be accepted unless made in writing
to the centre. Cancellations made more than thirty (30) days prior to
the event date will be refunded less 25% of the registration fee to
cover administration costs.
No registration refunds will be made after this date. Please note: The
full invoiced amount will still be payable in the event of
non-attendance on the day.