ETM-TRT Reference Letters and Testimonials
THE BEST Combat Trauma Management:
From The Military PTSD Study Group
Researching ETM TRT as Particularly
Applied to Combat and EMS Personnel
For both personnel and organizations, Etiotropic Trauma Management (ETM) is the most effective and comprehensive crisis and trauma treatment program in the country.
My interest in crisis debriefing and trauma treatment dates back to working with soldiers on the battle field in Vietnam, returning prisoners of war, and medical personnel in hospital trauma settings. Since the Vietnam War, I have continuously worked with victims of trauma and their families. My studies in crisis and trauma resolution include: Harvard University, the International Society for Traumatic Studies, the programs of Dr. Jeff Mitchell (author of Critical Incident Stress Debriefing), National Organization for Victim Assistance (NOVA) and others.
Etiotropic Trauma Management is a program with integrity. It provides quality treatment and delivers on all of its claims. Other programs tend to decrease anxiety in the debriefing process and the crisis worker tends to feel better for awhile. Later, issues arise, and trauma symptoms may go unrecognized and unattended. Only Etiotropic Trauma Management provides a method for dealing with the acute trauma manifestations. This trauma management system greatly reduces the chance of a crisis experience affecting their professional and personal functioning. My thoughts are that this system would minimize the worker's compensation claims from traumatic reactions (PTSD) and the acting out behaviors of traumatic stress symptomotology.
When conferring with several professional colleagues who are well versed in crisis debriefing and trauma treatment, all agreed that Etiotropic Trauma Management offers the only complete program for emergency medical service personnel. I am a career Army Officer and currently assigned to Brooke Army Medical Center, San Antonio, Texas. Etiotropic Trauma Management is the program we are considering for use in our medical center. We recently trained personnel so that the program can be recommended. ETM does not create victims; it resolves the impact of crisis and trauma. I urge EMS (Emergency Medical Services) organizations to give their personnel the best program possible, Etiotropic Trauma Management (ETM) and Trauma Resolution Therapy (TRT).
Very truly yours,
Gerald W. Conner
CH (LTC) US Army
I studied or practiced in the mental health professions for 12 years before becoming trained in the ETM and Trauma Resolution Therapy (TRT) models in 1985. At that time, these trauma management and clinical treatment methods were then fully applied in my private practice. The clinical results of that application were identical to those reported in this book and those results also reported in the professional training program entitled the ETM School; this book serves as the text for that School.
Shortly after completing that training and then applying the ETM/TRT models, I became an ETM School trainer. Like the ETM/TRT models, themselves, the School too is an extraordinary experience. By 1994, one thousand forty-five of one thousand forty-six qualifying professionals completing the School had elected ETM/TRT certification, in the process validating my experience of the special quality of the educational aspects of that training.
From time to time, I speak with graduates from the ETM School; they always affirm my own experience ETM/TRT training provides the best professional education program ever and the clinical results of the ETM and TRT models not only validate, but in many cases even exceed, the claims made in both the book and the School. In fact, I have never heard of a single complaint made by a graduate that the School did not reflect accurately the value of the treatment, management, and prevention models described; moreover, most graduates have expressed similar awe of the Models' effectivenesses and efficiencies to mine that I have now experienced for a decade.
Without hyperbole, Etiotropic Trauma Management and Trauma Resolution Therapy are phenomenons in the mental health clinical world. They replace skepticism with certainty of belief, disillusionment with hope, and confusion with clarity of purpose and direction. Most importantly, these models accord professionals the means to succeed at virtually every try; expectations are always high when using ETM and TRT.
Because I have not known how to tell the ETM and TRT stories in a way that conveyed the exceptional contributions made by both the models' applications and the professional training School, I asked some of the School graduates with whom I periodically speak to help. They did, and their letters of reference, some of which are personal, are reprinted in this forward; they paint a picture of the ETM/TRT training and the ETM/TRT models' myriad uses and great values.
Craig Carson, M.Ed.
Licensed Professional Counselor
Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
Certified ETM/TRT Trainer Supervisor
Ref: ETM Training for
Hays Consolidated I.S.D.
On behalf of our counseling, nursing, and social work departments I want to thank you for the extraordinary training and resources you have provided our district this week. The Etiotropic Trauma Management Program will serve our district well regarding our role in meeting the needs of our children, our parents, our teachers and our larger community.
Rarely have I come across a counseling tool as comprehensive, intelligent, and yet common-sense as this. You have given us an entire systematic approach to assist our children in the thorniest of scenarios and you have provided our people with the confidence to face even the most demanding circumstances. Our personnel are relieved to have the confidence with them as they go forward to calm trauma and create an improved learning environment.
I have great confidence and appreciation for the ETMN Internet program that you have provided and that I now have at my fingertips on my computer. Help is only a few keystrokes away! Our district is on its way to establishing computer and technology linkages in each office and classroom and your home page will bring comprehensive expert assistance into each counseling, nurse, administrative, and social work office. This tool is remarkable and we will be using it extensively.
We look forward to having you back in September for another week’s training and we will continue to work with you to assure that our district personnel have had every opportunity to go forward with the ETM model. You have brought us something we can use, can afford, and about which we can be confident.
When we looked at the five-day commitment that your training involves we had multiple logistical concerns. We did not know how we could pull the days together but we are pleased that we took the initiative to do that and we will make it a priority to have two more five day training in the 1996-1997 school year because the program warrants that type of commitment.
No district wants crisis or trauma, but every district faces it. Our district is now prepared thanks to you.
John Hall M.A., J.D., L.P.C.
DIRECTOR OF SPECIAL PROGRAMS
Over the last two decades it has become clearer to authors in the addictions and mental health fields, as well as to practicing clinicians, that unresolved traumatic experiences in one's past can cause a variety of emotional symptoms.
As my professional interest turned to the area of adult children of alcoholics and then to the area of sexual abuse, I became more and more frustrated in my search for an effective approach that could neutralize post traumatic stress and other types of emotional pain due to trauma. When I discovered Trauma Resolution Therapy, I found the model for which I was searching. A number of approaches that address the treatment of PTSD incorporate abreaction and catharsis. But all too often that is all they include. The five phase TRT model not only incorporates abreaction and catharsis (in phase one), but goes on to help the survivor to understand and emotionally experience how a false self, an artificial personality, has developed because of the traumatic experiences they have endured. Then working through the model, phase by phase, the survivor goes through a therapeutic process which dismantels their false self and returns the person back to a pre-traumatized state. I am not aware of a model and approach which is anywhere near to being as comprehensive and effective as TRT.
The authors of this model have wisely limited its availability to those who attend the ETM/TRT training program. It is not a clinical approach that can be completely taught and fully appreciated just by reading about it. It needs to be experientially as well as didactically learned. I found the training program, and the TRT school, to be both uncommonly interesting and informative. The training director is skilled in his ability to teach professionals in both a sophisticated and practical manner. I think the most outstanding quality of the training program is its skill building. Many workshops and training programs teach facts and concepts, but the implementation phase is left to the participant. The TRT training program focuses on building in the clinical skills necessary to provide specific therapeutic services. Even beyond that, there is a personal growth aspect to the training. The participants connect with their own emotions and confront their own limitations in their training roles as both a survivor and a therapist.
Since being certified as a TRT counselor, my clinical practice has changed significantly. Not only do I conduct ongoing TRT groups in both my work settings at a university counseling center and private office, but I approach individual clients in a different manner. I have come to appreciate how much unresolved trauma is the foundation for emotional disorders. Appreciating that is important, but having the tools to help clients resolve those underlying issues is paramount. The TRT training and literature has provided me those tools.
I am forever grateful.
Robert B. Mandell, Ph.D.
Director of Medical and Psychological Services
The University of Texas at Dallas
Licensed Psychologist in Private Practice, Texas
Etiotropic Trauma Management (ETM) and Trauma Resolution Therapy (TRT) training and use of the ETM/TRT models has been an invaluable tool in our school district and our community in the area of crisis management and in dealing effectively with psychological trauma both individually and in groups. La Joya I.S.D. is a 5A district with a student population of about 13,000. Our school district is located in the very Southern tip of Texas and many of our campuses are located as close as two miles from the U.S./Mexico border. The area of the Rio Grande Valley has become a major corridor for drug trafficking into the United States. We have a high unemployment rate, a large percentage of migrant students and students with limited English proficiency, and a high dropout rate. These are not unique conditions in this area. Alcohol and other harmful drugs are available, cheap, and easily obtained by both adults and minors.
During my first year as Substance Abuse Counselor with La Joya I.S.D., it became apparent very quickly that we would be faced with problems not only of students involved with or affected by chemical dependency, but also sexual assault and abuse, depression, suicidal students, traumatic death of significant others and other types of crime, parental abandonment and imprisonment issues, gang related activities and other psychological trauma of students on the elementary and the secondary levels. As my duties expanded to crisis counseling and coordination of the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Program after a short time, both I and other professionals such as nurses or counselors had no real solution for some of the problems presented by the students we were responsible for serving. Many of our administrators also felt at a loss to assist some students who were experiencing serious problems and who were failing to achieve their potential.
This background is a preface to a significant positive change which took place in our district four years ago when the district head nurse and I participated in the initial and advanced ETM/TRT training. We recognized that the TRT model which is a very structured process based on sound research on post-traumatic stress disorder offered hope and a solution to resolve the psychological trauma some of our students had experienced. We trained eleven more counselors and nurses in Trauma Resolution Therapy within the next year and developed a Crisis/ Trauma Team to cope with large traumatic situations such as the death of a student or a staff member. This team has responded to these situations and others in a very organized, efficient, and caring way to meet the needs of the persons affected at the time of the crisis as well as follow-up to those in need of further services after the initial trauma. There has been no chaos, hysteria, or disruption of classes or in continuing the regular school day except for the absence of students or staff who are receiving trauma counseling services. These individuals have been assigned a designated place on campus to receive services.
In assisting students individually and especially in group settings using the TRT model, those of us who facilitate this process have had great success in seeing students who participate in this therapy make significant positive changes in their life and get back on the track to success. This model allows for an abbreviated form of the process for recent trauma as well as skills to lift repression of past trauma, express appropriate feelings in a safe environment, grieve the losses they experienced as a result of the trauma and resolve these losses so they do not continue to affect them in a negative, sometimes destructive way.
In our geographic area we have very few resources for those who are without insurance or financial means to avail themselves of counseling outside the school setting. Administrators often request that new counselors or nurses on their campus participate in the training although these staff members are absent from their regular duties for more than a week. They report they have observed such significant professional growth and improved skills and services these staff members can provide after the training that the investment in time and money is worthwhile. The TRT training is one tool we have to help meet the needs of the students or staff on the campus or within the district rather than being completely dependent on often ineffective or non-existent resources available to our students and their families.
The TRT training school is highly organized, well presented and provides information we could have received from no other source. A large part of the training is experiential which the participants feel is especially valuable when they return to their campus or respond to a district or campus crisis. We in our district feel this training offers participants such unique skills in assisting our clients, staff, and sometimes community members to resolve psychological trauma that we have recently trained 17 additional counselors and nurses in this model. This training has been funded in our district through the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Program and has been supported by all district administrators. Those of us who have participated in the training feel strongly that now we can not only effectively evaluate the problems but can assist our clients in resolving them rather than merely applying a bandaid.
I sincerely recommend without reservation the ETM/TRT training and the ETM/TRT models to school personnel and any others working in the mental health field.
M.S.(G&C), LPC, LCDC, CCDS, CTRTC, NCAC I
La Joya Independent School District
Substance Abuse Counselor and Coordinator of the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Program
In the last four years Hope Center has sent over forty staff to TRT Schools. Each participant has expressed a profound change in their view of trauma and our clients. In addition, because we were able to have direct care staff, supervisors and administrators attend, we have made fundamental changes in our treatment approach. We use TRT in treating chemically dependent clients and victims of sexual abuse. We also use the near term trauma program for assisting our staff.
A problem for us has been the ability to train large numbers of our staff in a convenient and cost effective manner. It is important for us to have a pool of staff that can actually conduct TRT and who are familiar with ETM concepts. Because we are a private not for profit organization, we must use our training resources very carefully. Timing, travel, scheduling, and convenience are critical issues for us.
Thus, when we were informed that a trainer certification program was available, we leapt at the chance to purchase it. The trainer program will allow us to train our own staff at a time and place that is convenient to us. It will make it much easier to make sure that we always have adequately trained staff in both direct care and administrative positions to provide the program wide support for TRT. Finally, the trainer certification program will provide a greater degree of "in-house" expertise to provide support for every aspect of TRT.
Now that I have completed the trainer program, I want to offer my thanks and appreciation. The manuals, slides and other training material were excellent. We found it easy to present the concepts to our staff, facilitate the role plays, and answer questions. Your supervision provided valuable guidance for us. Most importantly, it was obvious that the staff we trained understood all aspects of TRT/ETM at the end of our school.
Jeff Jamar, Director, Hope
Youth and Family Services
LMSW-ACP, LCDC, Certified TRT Counselor
It is my pleasure to write this letter regarding my experience with Trauma Resolution Therapy (TRT). TRT is a highly structured therapeutic approach to helping people resolve psychological trauma. The TRT School introduces the student to the theoretical underpinnings of the TRT model and provides excellent hands on experience in applying the model. Craig Carson skillfully guides participants through the various phases of treatment using a series of extremely powerful role play situations. The TRT training provided me with a much deeper understanding of psychological trauma and the process of trauma resolution. It was highly practical training experience which left me better equipped to help my clients. Etiotropic Trauma Management (ETM) focuses on the special problems faced by those people and organizations who care for trauma victims. This aspect of the TRT training was particularly helpful to me in my consultations with a local hospital. I was able to help staff and administration understand and process the deleterious effects of psychological trauma on themselves and the organization for whom they work. In sum, I found my TRT training to be a valuable addition to my professional training and highly recommend it to any professional who works directly or indirectly with victims of psychological trauma.
Alan A. Kellerman, Ph.D.
I attended the week long ETM/TRT school in November 1992. I had heard about the value of TRT from other therapists and I quickly began to see that value as I participated in the training program.
I have worked as a counselor for seventeen years. Most of my clients have been severely traumatized. After attending the TRT school, I clearly saw why victims act the way that they do. As I reflected back on client behaviors, thinking patterns, and coping skills, it was apparent that they needed further therapy. As I attended the school, I knew TRT was what had been missing from the myriad therapies that had been available.
I continue to work with victims of trauma. I am in private practice. Since attending the ETM/TRT School, I have worked with more currently affected patients; the trauma has recently been caused by rape and other crimes. TRT is a practical, thorough and concrete way to help them. Patients have responded to TRT with much hope and expectation of getting through the trauma's effects.
I have worked with patients who have witnessed hideous crimes that defy description. I began to see these individuals shortly, within weeks, of the traumatic experiences. They've now completed TRT and the results were as astonishing for them as they were for me; they now have new lives, views that before TRT's application were impossible even to consider. I'm grateful for this additional tool in my practice.
For a short time, I have also used TRT in an inpatient setting, working with Vietnam veterans. For the first time in decades, these people could progress past previous attempts at reconciling the PTS. Not only were these positive experiences for the vets, but they provided me with a most rewarding experience as well.
I have been affected personally by trauma and TRT has helped me. One month prior to my attending the ETM/TRT school, I was a victim of an attempted robbery. I caught the would-be robbers in a frightening way. Going through the TRT school one month later helped me personally. I could accept myself and the feelings I had. Prior to the school, I'd tell myself, "don't be stupid, it's all over," not realizing the trauma was still reverberating in my system.
Six months later, my family was again, victimized by a random drive-by shooting. Once again, with the help of a TRT trained counselor, I was helped through this experience. Personally and professionally TRT has been and is an invaluable asset.
RN, MSCS, LCDC
I have found TRT to be very effective in assisting clients in their pursuit of true resolution of the anxiety and pain they have often long experienced as a result of trauma. TRT has two important characteristics that I admire. First it has a well-defined structure that is highly effective. If followed, the structure combines a number of dynamics that provide for recall and abreaction necessary for resolution, but in a least threatening manner. Second, I find the process shows respect for the client by informing them of the process itself. Rather than embarking on a possibly amorphous journey subject to much avoidance and resistance, the client has a clear picture of the route, means, and destination. This gives them more of a stake in the decision to partake of the journey, lessens anxiety about the process, yet maintains the energy necessary for the therapeutic experience itself.
One interesting aspect I have observed is that clients themselves intuitively pick up on the effectiveness of the approach. Some look over the process and inform me that they do not believe they are really ready for the trauma resolution. They prefer to wait and work around the issue or other issues for awhile, then later, when they are ready, will tell me so and the work on TRT begins. I find less likelihood of therapy dropout in these situations, because the client has some control over the pace and timing and are better aware of their own role in the overall process.
John P. White, MSW, BCSW
Since my original TRT training in 1991, I have continuously conducted TRT groups in my private practice. Victims vary from those affected by incest, physical abuse, ritual cult abuse, and other sexual abuse to the more publicized rapes, muggings, murders, stalkings, robbery, and beatings.
TRT is the most powerful tool I can offer to these victims. Through this process, they can clearly see how their survivor skills no longer function to help them, and this is the beginning of control lost following the traumatic event.
When clients complete the final phase (they call it the Celebration Phase), they understand how they had cognitively blocked the grieving of losses. After completing this grief process they express a feeling of control returned.
As I see each client grow in hope and self-esteem through each phase, I, too, am energized with them by this process and can bring more enthusiasm to the TRT group and to my work in general.
Thank you for this much needed structured and empowering tool.
Joy Smedick, M.A., LPC, LMFT, Cht.
I wanted to let you know how much I appreciate the TRT Institute and the TRT process itself. After completing the 5-day training I felt ready to begin a group <197> not my usual experience after a continuing education experience, no matter how good! It was of course helpful to have the ongoing supervision.
My group consisted of 4 young women who had all experienced alcoholism, either of a parent or a spouse. All 4 had been my clients in individual therapy and I was feeling <169>stuck<170> with more than one of them. I had seen one of the women for 5 years before TRT! While they were all somewhat apprehensive about a group experience, they were all supportive of each other. I was amazed and gratified at the difference in these young women at the termination of the group. The Phase Five experiences were very touching. I continue to hear occasionally from these young women and they seem to be doing well, being the people they were created to be instead of the survivors they became.
Carolyn G. Pace, MA, LPC,
Interface-Samaritan Counseling Center
I have been using TRT in many different settings since becoming ETM/TRT trained. When TRT is applied to the most difficult of situations, for example, chronic PTSD resulting from myriad childhood sexual assault, and even where such patients have been exposed to various (other) therapies for long periods, years, the outcomes are extraordinary; such patients are able to resolve the trauma completely and exit therapy altogether. I have seen wonderful things happen for people who have completed TRT.
Some different types of settings I have used TRT are inpatient for women substance abuse patients who have relapsed and did not disclose their sexual abuse upon first admission; outpatient, and on the adolescent unit.
TRT is very versatile and can fit many types of treatment. The therapy works for itself, my job is to facilitate the process. Nothing else gets to the core or the <169>wound<170> like TRT; and nothing else heals like TRT. TRT takes the place of any medication.
I will continue to use TRT because it works and I have seen benefits among my patients. They are different people now, and they did the work themselves.
I recommend this therapy highly! Other types of treatment for trauma are mere bandaids; this is an actual healing.
Cathy Milliger, L.P.C., C.S.A.C.
I was certified in August of 1993 in Trauma Resolution Therapy Counseling as a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor and a Certified Christian Counselor. I began using TRT with my chemical dependency clients immediately and have found it to be profoundly effective in not only relapse prevention, but in turning around relapse prone clients from long established relapse patterns to a new hope of continued sobriety.
Prior to my use of the TRT modality, my continuing care programs for chemically dependent clients consisted of relapse prevention planning, process group, confrontation, increased knowledge of coping skills, and recognition of solutions to life's problems. Although this combination is effective in relapse prevention, many of the clients seem to continue to have wide mood swings and stay in emotional turmoil.
After a few weeks of client participation in TRT, I began to see positive emotional and social changes in my chemical dependency clients. Their mood swings became less erratic and easier to manage. The emotional turmoil became less likely to cause relapse into chemical use or return to unhealthy relationships. A new ability to make appropriate decisions became apparent in the areas of self care, boundary setting, responsibilities, and relationships within a relatively short period of time. They became more willing to trust others.
I am highly impressed with the positive results I have seen in my clients with the use of TRT and would like to thank you for the gift I have received through the increase of effectiveness in my work as a mental health professional. Please keep me informed of any changes or additions you may make in the future.
Trish Listi, MA, LCDC, TRTC
TRT has been in use at Nueva Vista Development Center since May of 1991. In the almost three years that we have used TRT as a treatment modality, there are several factors that come to mind. As you know, NVDC is a Residential Treatment Center for boys and girls and is located on two campuses in deep South Texas. The children that we work with have been placed in treatment by various agencies including probation departments in Bexar County, Dallas County, Hidalgo County, El Paso County, Nueces County and others. Also, children are placed here by the Texas Youth Commission and by the Texas Department of Protective and Regulatory Services.
Beginning with my tenure as Clinical Director in late 1990, I began searching for a therapeutic modality that I felt would be of benefit for the youth in our care. I was particularly looking for a treatment modality that would benefit children who have many common problems. Among the problems that we saw on a regular basis, then as now, were physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, substance use and abuse, difficulty with family relationships due to the above stated causes as well as others, problems with various juvenile authorities for a wide variety of reasons and assorted other issues including divorce, separation and abandonment.
To say the least, all of the above noted problems make it difficult for the children to deal with their lives given the extent of the traumas that they have had to deal with. We noted that the various traumas caused a variety of survival behaviors that were maladaptive rather than adaptive and that each child's ability to adapt as a result of the trauma was unique to that child, though there was a great deal of commonality.
With the advent of TRT and the certification of our therapeutic staff we have noticed some changes in the children's ability to graduate from the program rather than wash out of the program due to the ongoing use of the maladaptive survival skills. This change can be attributed, in part, to the ability of the children to effectively resolve the trauma surrounding their personal circumstances.
As is often the case with children in long term care, they have gone from placement to placement as their survival behaviors have caused them to be adversely discharged from various facilities. Some children having as many as 20 or 30 placements by the time they arrive at our facilities. What we have found is that as children resolve traumas using the TRT system, they are able to stabilize, retrench and learn adaptive survival skills. This has enabled a fairly large number of children to graduate from this facility to a less restrictive setting, and, as they contact us later to let us know how they are doing, indicated that the resolved traumas are no longer impinging on their ability to deal effectively with other people and with life's situations.
There is no doubt in my mind that TRT is one of the most useful and effective methods of helping clients deal with life's traumas.
M.A., LPC, C.T.R.T.C., L.C.D.C., L.C.C.A.
I am pleased to endorse Trauma Resolution Therapy and the Trauma Resolution Therapy School as valuable in my work as a Rehabilitation Counselor for GAB Business Services, Inc.
I find the structure to be very valuable especially with our clients and the payment administrators. I have used the principles of TRT extensively with victims of crime, persons who were injured on the job, and veterans.
As a Doctoral Candidate in Counseling, I have had much training in counseling theory and techniques, and even specific graduate courses in Crisis Counseling. TRT provides a succinct, ethical and structured format which complements my training and allows short term, resolution work without confounding the process with issues that might be suitable for long term therapeutic work. The blending of cognitive and affective therapeutic modalities is especially appealing to me, since many of the shorter term models do not do this.
The ETM School provided the experience necessary to build my confidence in using the model, while refraining from special self-disclosure. The school is well organized and provides significant amount of theory and theoretically based information. The audio/visual information and the manual facilitated a good learning experience.
Lynn J. Friedman, M.Ed., CRC,
NCC, LPC, LRC
Senior Rehabilitation Consultant
GAB Business Services
Trauma Resolution Therapy has been a program track at this one hundred twenty-five bed psychiatric hospital (Columbia Behavioral Center in El Paso, Texas) for nearly three years. The program has been a great value to our physicians, clinicians and our patients. The Trauma Resolution Therapy structured program has brought about dramatic changes in the lives of patients whose survival responses had reduced the effectiveness and the quality of their lives.
The TRT program has moved from an inpatient program to our partial hospital program. Our outpatient program allows our patients to complete all five phases of TRT. I have been the therapist on our TRT track for nearly two years. I am now the TRT coordinator working exclusively in TRT. Our discharge evaluations confirm that TRT is an effective tool in resolving trauma and reconciling its effects.
Daryl C. Van der burgh
Four years ago I decided to retire after twenty years as a School Psychologist to follow my dream, to have my own clinical practice. I knew I would have to develop my clinical skills so I consulted a colleague about good workshops in my area of the state (Louisiana). I was told about the TRT workshop to be held in Natchitoches and signed up. The TRT workshop was the best training I ever had! It was intensive, I was exhausted by the end of the week but left feeling that I could handle most anything! Because of my years as a School Psychologist, I gravitated towards children and adolescents as I began my private practice; I began applying TRT in therapy with my young clients. The most effective method I found was for the children to dictate their stories to me. I would then type the stories and the kids who wanted to would illustrate them. Then we would read and process. During this time, I was working at the Alexandria Mental Health Clinic on a contract to supplement my income while I tried to build a private practice. My work with the kids at clinic was so effective that I soon became the clinician who was assigned the most difficult cases. I loved it and would probably still be there except that my contract was cut due to state financial problems. So in May of 1993 I began full time private practice in a town full of starving private practitioners. Now, less than a year later, I have more clients than I can handle and am looking for good therapists to hire. I see children, adolescents and adults and get many trauma patients. TRT is so effective! I do not think my practice would be where it is today had I not been trained in TRT techniques. Any therapist that I hire will be sent for TRT training because I want to maintain my corporation's good name.
Sherrye K. Smith, MS, LPC
McAllen Independent School District has really benefited from the Trauma Resolution Training (TRT) and has been able to respond to situations that we otherwise would not have been prepared to deal with. Crisis situations are handled with confidence and understanding by a team of TRT certified professionals in MISD.
We appreciate the curriculum, the philosophy, the delivery and you.
Director for Educational/Prevention and Student Assistance Programs
In 1992, my associates and I attended the ETM Professional Training School. It was, simply, the best professional education and training ever. Application of the TRT model to our patients has been an even more rewarding experience, especially the application to children affected by psychological trauma. I and my entire staff highly recommend the ETM School; it is a must for all professionals who are interested in the best welfare of their patients.
Judy Laurendine, MSW, BCSW
McAllen Independent School District has been pleased to use the Trauma Resolution Training (TRT) as part of our crisis management plan. The skills, knowledge, and techniques gained in TRT have enhanced the effectiveness of MISD support staff.
Presently thirty-eight counselors, nurses, and social workers have received training. When crisis situations arise within the district, a team made up of TRT professionals goes into the schools to provide crisis counseling. We have utilized this process on numerous occasions with the death of students.
Counselors also use their TRT skills within small groups or individual settings. As students are exposed to more and more traumatic situations daily, the use of supportive groups becomes more necessary. The general information provided during the training is very helpful during parent conferences and parenting sessions.
Craig, you provided sensitive, organized and excellent training. We are very pleased with TRT and hope to train more staff.
Coordinator of Counseling and Guidance
McAllen Independent School District
How do I ever put into words the impact TRT has had on me both personally and professionally.
My personal experience dealing with multiple traumas in my own life through TRT was life changing and has given me such peace.
Professionally, I have been facilitating ongoing TRT groups for the last three years. This structured program is phenomenal in the way it works, and the end result is consistently positive. It is the most effective method for addressing trauma I've ever used.
The TRT Educational Program Presenter's Handbook is of great benefit in guiding me as I present the information to my clients. It's also of great assistance when I have questions regarding TRT application or theory. The handbook has also been helpful as a resource when I have given presentations to groups (nurses) about what TRT is.
Again Craig, my heartfelt thanks to you, as well as to Jesse Collins and Nancy Carson. I continue to provide this therapy to my Chemical Dependency clients and their families with the utmost confidence in the process and all of you.
Merry Elliott Gandy, RNC,
Certified Trauma Resolution Therapist
I am happy to have the opportunity to talk about the value of the Trauma Resolution Therapy training. As you know, both Nydia Corzantes and myself completed both TRT Schools. Since we have become Certified Trauma Resolution Therapy Counselors, we have designed the NOAH TRAUMA MANAGEMENT PROGRAM. This is envisioned to be a voluntary employee assistance program for NOAH staff who have experienced trauma on duty while managing patient crises. We completed some initial training sessions with NOAH staff last fall. Due to logistical problems in borrowing the Crisis Manager slides, and then bureaucratic difficulties in obtaining our own slides for NOAH, we had a period of "down" time. However, we are recommencing with the training of staff on Friday, 4 February 1994. We are initially concentrating on nursing staff, since they are most impacted by patient crises. After Nursing Services, we will proceed to inservicing other staff. We are also presenting the concept of the programs to newly employed staff during their initial orientation to the hospital.
Our goal is that the Trauma Management Program will provide staff an opportunity to discuss and to resolve their feelings regarding the traumatic event, so that these feelings will not adversely affect their personal or professional lives. The concept of the program is based on the Crisis Manager series of the Trauma Resolution Therapy model. We feel that the Crisis Manager model has tremendous application to the work we are trying to do with NOAH staff. Although we are only in the initial stages of implementing this program, the response from our staff has been very positive. We feel that the Crisis Manager model is an extremely effective method of intervention with which to assist staff who are continually dealing with trauma in carrying out their job duties. We feel that the implementation of this model will prevent the intrusion of the effects of the trauma into both their personal and professional lives. As far as we know, this would be the first program of its kind in a state psychiatric hospital in Louisiana.
Thank you for your time and assistance to us.
Julie Savoy, BCSW
Clinical Social Worker Director
Nydia Corzantes, BCSW
Clinical Social Worker Specialist
Editor's comments: This letter was initially written in 1992 to the EMS division of the Texas State Health Department; it was planning a training program based on another trauma management approach. Upon request, the letter's author, an ETM trained crisis manager with a long and distinguished career in the field of psychological trauma management, explained to the government group why it should also consider ETM/TRT in addition to the competing model.
I am a Crisis Counselor with HPD assigned to the Homicide Division/Family Violence Unit. I would like to share a few of my thoughts with you: a comparison of popular trauma management models to Collins' and Carson's Etiotropic Trauma Management (ETM), an abbreviated form of their Trauma Resolution Therapy Model. I use TRT with victims of family violence and have proposed a program to provide ETM to our Crisis Counselors.
Trauma Resolution Therapy is a highly structured model that I have found to be very effective in reconciling the negative impacts of trauma. It goes a step further and addresses the individual values and beliefs that are contradicted by the experience, a process which is absent in most models.
Because of the very high degree of structure provided by the TRT model, very little assessment or intervention on the part of the facilitator is required. The normal diversionary processes present in our family and social systems are simply removed, allowing the affected person to fully experience their losses and integrate them.
TRT is just as effective in dealing with near-term trauma as long past trauma. In fact, it has been my experience that when people begin TRT, they often become aware of buried traumas that they have not been consciously aware of in the past.
I think you will find upon close examination of the ETM/TRT models and then comparison of them to other trauma management programs, that the use of other models alone will limit the benefit that you can offer to crisis managers; the following explains the reasoning underlying this conclusion.
First, where the other models lack structure, emergency responders will continue to divert conscious attention away from the trauma and stay in shock. This is absolutely not possible with TRT. Secondly, other models are only of value if applied within a very short time of the traumatic event. Not so with TRT. Finally, the other models totally miss identifying the personal losses associated with contradicted values and beliefs. Since we as crisis managers tend to hide behind our professional identities, the damage to personal identity is often overlooked. I think this is really where the other models fall short, as the trauma continues to negatively impact personal identity in spite of efforts to aid the professional.
I hope you will find these comments useful in your examination of the TRT and ETM models. As you can tell, I have a lot of faith in them and am very excited about the results I have achieved with them.
Homicide Division/Family Violence Unit; HPD