Workshop Onno van der Hart .. 20, 21 November 2020


The Haunted Self: Understanding and Treating Trauma-Generated Dissociation, With an Emphasis on Working With Dissociative Parts

When otherwise experienced clinicians apply general effective therapeutic approaches to people with complex trauma-related (dissociative) disorders, the result may be an unexpected crisis and even decompensation. In one sentence, the aim of this workshop is educating partiicpants to prevent such disasters and, instead, to foster adequate treatment. Within the cognitive context of the theory of structural dissociation of the personality, traumatic experiences can be regarded as breaking-points, dividing one’s personality into dissociative parts functioning in daily life (Apparently Normal Parts; ANPs) and dissociative parts stuck in trauma-time (Emotional Parts; EPs).

The earlier in life the traumatization—often involving attachment trauma inherent in emotional, physical and sexual abuse--starts, and the more intense and frequent it takes place, the more complex this dissociation of the personality becomes, and the more phase-oriented therapy aiming at increasing the patient’s/client’s integrative capacity should be the treatment of choice. In principle, phase-oriented treatment consists of three recurring phases: (1) stabilization, symptom reduction, symptom reduction, and skills training; (2) treatment of traumatic memories; and (3) personality (re-)integration and rehabilitation. Such therapy needs to include: a clearly-defined collaborative therapeutic relationship; a systematic plan of overcoming the various phobias which maintain the dissociation of the personality; and the thoughtful application of a systems approach, involving working with dissociative parts—also in the treatment of the traumatic memories. This workshop also highlights, in particular, the dynamics of complex trauma-generated dissociation of the personality, its manifestations, and the challenges of working with dissociative parts in Phase 1. Although not required, it would be helpful to read prior to the workshop some of the clinical books mentioned below.

Bio: Onno van der Hart, PhD, is Emeritus Professor of Psychopathology of Chronic Traumatization at Utrecht University, the Netherlands, and a former psychologist/psychotherapist in private practice, Amstelveen, the Netherlands. He acts as a consultant, educator and supervisor in the treatment of complex trauma-related disorders, in partiuclatr dissociative identity disorder (DID). He is a past-president of the International Society for the Study of Traumatic Stress (ISSTS). He has co-authored : Van der Hart, O., Nijenhuis, E.R.S., & Steele, K. (2006). The haunted self: Structural dissociation and the treatment of chronic traumatization. New York/London: Norton; Boon, S., Steele, K., & Van der Hart, O. (2011). Coping with trauma-related dissociation: Skills training for patients and therapists. New York/London: Norton; and Steele, K., Boon, S., & Van der Hart, O. (2017). Treating trauma-related dissociation: A practical, integrative approach. New York/London: Norton. With G. Craparo, and F. Ortu, he is co-editor of Rediscovering Pierre Janet: Trauma, dissociation, and a new context for psychoanalysis. London & New York: Routledge, 2019. His website is:

  • 20 , 21 November 2020
  • Amsterdam, The Netherlands
  • In English.
  • Price: € 550.-- Euro.

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We do not offer refunds for cancellations within two months of the training date.

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Workshop Onno van der Hart nov. 2020