Phase 1: Safety and Stabilization in Trauma Work
In this chapter, we discuss the first phase of the tri-phasic model, which focuses on developing the client’s safety and stabilization. This phase of treatment establishes the critical building blocks upon which effective trauma treatment is conducted. Safety, which includes clinician attention to conditions in the therapeutic environment, the development of trust, practices of predictability, and enrichment of client empowerment, provides the necessary components for clients to begin engaging in the process. Safety is accompanied by a focus on client stabilization, and these critical elements involve work towards the client’s identification and expression of emotion, ability to regulate, and effective use of self-awareness. The chapter also provides case examples to illustrate the concepts, and the chapter concludes with a keyword assessment, list of experiential activities, and supervisory discussion topics.