Dissociation of the personality: The key to understanding chronic traumatization and its treatment
EMDR treatment of complex trauma-related disorders may benefit from a clear understanding of the dissociative nature of these disorders. Dissociation is an undue division of the personality among two or more psychobiological systems or “dissociative parts” that comprise the survivor’s personality. One or more of them function in daily life; others are fixated in traumatic experiences. The more severe the traumatization, the more dissociative parts, involving more complex trauma-related disorders, can be expected to exist. Dissociative parts have psychobiological boundaries that are maintained, to a large degree, by different trauma-related phobias, which should be systematically resolved in phase-oriented treatment. Participants will be able to describe structural dissociation of the personality as a specific form of integrative failure that needs to be overcome in phase-oriented treatment, identify ways of relating dissociative symptoms to the underlying dissociation of the personality, and identify targets for EMDR interventions in each of the three treatment phases in terms of overcoming specific phobias.
Original Work Citation
van der Hart, O. (2010, September/October). Dissociation of the personality: The key to understanding chronic traumatization and its treatment. Plenary presented at the 15th EMDR International Association Conference, Minneapolis, MN
“Dissociation of the personality: The key to understanding chronic traumatization and its treatment,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed May 8, 2021, https://emdria.omeka.net/items/show/20139.