Wisdom, Attachment, and Love in Trauma Therapy: Beyond Evidence-Based Practice, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Wisdom, Attachment, and Love in Trauma Therapy

Beyond Evidence-Based Practice, 1st Edition

By Susan Pease Banitt


196 pages | 8 B/W Illus.

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Wisdom, Attachment, and Love in Trauma Therapy focuses on the creation of the therapist as healing presence rather than technique administrator—in other words, how to be rather than what to do. Trauma survivors need wise therapists who practice with the union of intellect, knowledge, and intuition. Through self-work, therapists can learn to embody healing qualities that foster an appropriate, corrective, and loving experience in treatment that transcends any technique. This book shows how Eastern wisdom teachings and Western psychotherapeutic modalities combine with modern theory to support a knowledgeable, compassionate, and wise therapist who is equipped to help even the most traumatized person heal. 


"Wisdom, Attachment, and Love in Trauma Therapy provides a sophisticated and compassionate understanding of how trauma therapists experience, train, and contribute to the healing of their heroic clients. In this well-written and integrated book, Susan Pease Banitt conveys a conceptual framework integrating principles extracted from contemporary neuroscience, psychology, and philosophic orientations to emphasize the features of successful therapy. Through her personal experiences, she emphasizes the importance of the therapist being present with and accepting of the client. Perhaps most relevant to the trauma therapist, she provides a deep understanding of the vulnerabilities of the therapist, who may be a survivor of trauma."

Stephen W. Porges, PhD, distinguished university scientist and founding director of the Traumatic Stress Research Consortium, Kinsey Institute, Indiana University, and author of The Pocket Guide to The Polyvagal Theory: The Transformative Power of Feeling Safe

"Susan Pease Banitt offers us more than a book; this is a mission statement on how many of us who work to bring healing to the wounds of trauma really feel about the state of our field. Pease Bannit, an expert at her craft, shares her much-needed voice as she teaches on one of the great clinical imperatives: it’s the relationship that heals. Practical, useful and integrative, any clinician working in trauma healing ought to have a copy of this book to develop in the art of this work."

Jamie Marich, PhD, LPCC-S, LICDC-CS, REAT, RMT, author of EMDR Therapy and Mindfulness for Trauma-Focused Care, Dancing Mindfulness: A Creative Path to Healing and Transformation, Trauma Made Simple, Trauma and the 12 Steps, and EMDR Made Simple

"In this book, Susan Pease Banitt is able to integrate psychosocial history, cultural diversity, interdisciplinary sciences, interfaith spirituality and good old-fashioned common sense. She synthesizes complex information in ways that make sense of clinical chaos without resorting to reductionism. Her work has very practical applications beyond theory and empowers healing processes for clients and therapists alike. Pease Banitt's brilliance stands out above the rest because her personal and professional lives are congruent and lived with a high level of integrity."

Ericha Scott, PhD, LPCC, ATR-BC, keynote speaker,creative arts psychotherapist, consultant, globally published researcher, and theorist in peer-reviewed journals

"Susan Pease Banitt bravely challenges outmoded mindsets that have never served us as we work to heal trauma survivors. She asserts that our clients need to feel loved, that there is a place for touch in psychotherapy, that dissociated and later recovered memories are normal responses to trauma, and that we need sit in belief of what our clients tell us, including ritual abuse and trauma-based mind control."

Ellen Lacter, PhD, licensed clinical psychologist, registered play therapist, marriage and family therapist, past president of the California Association of Play Therapy, academic coordinator of the Play Therapy Certificate Program at the University of California, San Diego Extension

Table of Contents

Foreword Preface Part I: Wisdom 1. What Makes a Great Therapist?2. Neuroscience and Trauma-Informed Practice3. Ego Development and Traumatic Defenses Part II: Attachment 4. Fostering Attachment in Psychotherapy5. Preventing Relationship Rupture: Countertransference and Thresholds6. Repairing Relationship Ruptures7. Qualities of the Advanced Trauma TherapistPart III: Love 8. Superhuman Empathy and Trauma Work 9. Self-Care for the Trauma Therapist10. Awakening to Wisdom, Love and Compassion

About the Author

Susan Pease Banitt, LCSW, is a social worker and psychotherapist who specializes in the treatment of severe trauma and PTSD. She has worked in the field of mental health for more than four decades in diverse settings and teaches classes on healing from trauma in Portland, Oregon. She is the author of The Trauma Tool Kit: Healing PTSD from the Inside Out.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
PSYCHOLOGY / Psychopathology / Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
PSYCHOLOGY / Psychotherapy / General
PSYCHOLOGY / Mental Health