How to Prevent Relapse: The FST Red Flags Checklist

When treatment ends, how do we prevent our traumatized children and families from relapsing? And how do we help our families recognize the early signs of relapse before they occur? There are many articles and books written on how to begin treatment through proper assessment and diagnostic tools. But surprisingly, in comparison, there is very […]

How to Prevent Trauma Treatment Failure: FST Troubleshooting and Dress Rehearsals

Treatment with traumatized families and children will often fail when the trauma therapist fails to both troubleshoot “what will you do if?” scenarios with the FST Trauma Playbook (i.e., what will you do if your child refuses to go on a special outing with you?) and conduct dress rehearsals with both the parent or caregiver […]

FST Trauma Playbooks to Unstick Your Families

Traumatized families with traumatized children often remain stuck in “now what?” After identifying the traumatic event and telling their story, the question is “now what?”. “What do we do in the here and now to heal our child’s trauma to move forward?” Trauma therapists often lack the tools to answer this question. In response, the […]

How to Do Root Work in Trauma Treatment Using Feedback Loops and Playbooks

Sixteen-year-old Lucy and her family are hopelessly stuck in the weeds. Lucy is in treatment due to self-harming behaviors (cutting), symptoms of depression, and anxiety. She was bullied through 9th grade at school. Since this traumatic event, her grades continue to plummet, her attendance is sporadic, and she suffers from depression and anxiety. To add […]

Trauma and Nutrition: The FST Nutrition Strategy

Why is Nutrition Not Typically Part of Trauma Treatment? Despite the advances of nutritional therapy over the last 30 years, there is often limited to no inclusion of nutrition as part of the trauma treatment for children and families with PTSD. However, diet and nutrition can serve as powerful tools to influence change in both […]

Safety First Before Trauma Treatment

The FST Trauma Safety Playbook I will never forget the phone call. Sarah, a highly competent trauma therapist, contacted me and said: Scott, I am stuck with this family. I have been seeing them for over ten months with little to no significant change. Fifteen-year-old Leon is now involved in both the juvenile justice system […]

Client Feedback Improves Trauma Outcomes: The FST Ethnographic Technique

Why Feedback from Clients Matter Feedback comes in different forms, positive and negative, however, no matter what, it should always be constructive. Sure, it’s mostly subjective, but whenever I ask for feedback, I am “amazed” by how often people use absolute terms and words during sessions I’ve been a part of. They are eye opening […]

How to Engage the Extended Family in Trauma Treatment

It Takes a Village to Raise a Child It takes a village to raise a child is an old African proverb. It means that a child needs both the immediate and extended family to overcome adverse experiences like trauma and to grow up in a safe and secure environment. Unfortunately, traditional trauma treatment often only […]

FST Stabilization vs. Active Trauma Technique: Setting the Goals of Therapy

Which Came First, the Chicken or the Egg? The chicken-and-egg expression refers to situations in which it is unknown what happened first, or what situation caused the other. In trauma treatment, a critical chicken-or-the-egg decision occurs after the diagnostic assessment. Trauma therapists must choose to begin with one of the following goals for therapy: Stabilize […]

Family Trauma Treatment
Root Work: FST Seed Tree Technique

We Have to Get Out Of the Weeds   Weeds return when roots are not pulled. In the same way, our clients’ traumatic symptoms (the weeds) return when we fail to identify and treat the root causes.  When this happens, our traumatized children and families in family trauma treatment experience first order change or change […]

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