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Land Mines and Booby Traps: Navigating Re-enactments in Treating Patients with Trauma

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Video and Event Recap

A Special Presentation given by Dr. Kim Dennis, MD, and Marcia Nickow, Psyd, CADC, CGP

This presentation (recorded November 7th, 2019) explored the trauma reenactments that can happen in all forms of institutions, including treatment settings, how to avoid it, how to identify it when it happens and what to do about it when we see it. The short clip below describes the issue.

When those institutions serve people with histories of abuse, many safeguards need to be in place in order to manage and detect re-enactments of abuse playing out between and among staff and patients.  The responsibility we have as professionals is awesome. The short video below describes why this issue matters to SunCloud Health.

There are examples of systems that have been riddled for decades with unchecked abuse, that finally have been exposed by virtue of victims speaking out in recent years (i.e., the Catholic church, in government, in the entertainment industry, the treatment industry, etc.). Where do we go from here? What do we do from here? ‎The short video below describes the SunCloud Health approach.

The healing we can impart as clinicians come with a responsibility to both see and appropriately respond to re-enactments in therapeutic settings. It is on all of us in the professional community to build treatment settings that are healthy, safe, well-boundaried, at all levels of our organizations.

Below is a link to the full presentation.

SunCloud Health is a private outpatient treatment center with four locations, Northbrook, Naperville and Chicago, IL. We  provide highly individualized and compassionate care for people struggling with complex co occurring substance use disorders, eating disorders, mood disorders and underlying trauma.

Our Presenters

Dr KimDr. Kimberly Dennis:Dr Kim,” as she is known, has been treating addiction, mood disorders, substance use disorders, eating disorders, PTSD, and personality disorders for over ten years, most recently as CEO and Medical Director of SunCloud Health, an outpatient treatment center with 3 locations throughout the Chicago area. She is a board-certified psychiatrist who specializes in treating addictions, eating disorders and co-occurring disorders.  She believes in and maintains a holistic perspective in the practice of psychiatry, incorporating biological, psycho-social and spiritual approaches into the individually-tailored treatment programs for each patient at SunCloud.

Marcia Nickow: An addictions psychologist, group psychotherapist and trauma specialist, Marcia Nickow, Psy.D., CADC, CGP, empowers patients to tap into their insight, intellect, creativity and spontaneity to achieve therapeutic breakthroughs. With 25 years of clinical experience, she treats alcohol and drug addiction; relationship, sex, pornography and internet addictions; eating disorders; trauma and inter-generational trauma; personality disorders; and anger and anxiety issues. Dr. Nickow has designed, implemented and directed an integrative intensive outpatient group treatment program for addictions and trauma in downtown Chicago.

Event Location

Weinberg/Newton Gallery
688 North Milwaukee Avenue
Chicago, IL 60642
Website and Directions

Weinberg/Newton Gallery is a non-commercial gallery with a mission to collaborate with nonprofit organizations and artists to educate and engage the public on social justice issues. Through artwork and programming, the gallery provides a vital space for open discourse on critical contemporary issues facing our communities. Connecting artists with social justice organizations, we work to drive change and cultivate a culture of consciousness.

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