The Meadows Blog

The Meadows' Senior Fellow, Alexandra Katehakis, MFT, CSAT-S, CST-S, along with Dr. Sonnee Weedn and Jill Vermiere, are the recipients of the 2013 Clark Vincent Award from the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists (CAMFT) for their role in writing sections of the textbook, Making Advances: A Comprehensive Guide for Treating Female Sex and Love Addicts. The award was presented at CAMFT's 49th Annual Meeting in Sacramento, Calif. on May 16-19, 2013.

Katehakis is the Founder and Clinical Director of the Center for Healthy Sex in Los Angeles, Calif. She is an expert in the treatment of sexual addiction and other sexual disorders and has incorporated interpersonal neurobiology into her Psychobiological Approach to Sex Addiction Treatment (PASAT). Katehakis was the 2012 recipient of the Carnes Award, a distinguished acknowledgment for her significant contributions to the field of sex addiction. She is author of "Erotic Intelligence: Igniting Hot Healthy Sex after Recovery from Sex Addiction" and is currently writing a book for the W.W. Norton Interpersonal Neurobiology Series edited by Allan Schore and Daniel Siegel titled, Sex Addiction as Affect Dysregulation: A Holistic Healing Model (2014).

"The Meadows is thrilled that Alexandra Katehakis was presented with the prestigious Clark Vincent Award honoring a literary or research contribution to the profession of marriage and the family," said Jim Dredge, CEO for The Meadows. "We also applaud and congratulate Dr. Sonnee Weedn and Jill Vermiere."

The Meadows is an industry leader in treating trauma and addiction through its inpatient and workshop programs. To learn more about The Meadows' work with trauma and addiction contact an intake coordinator at (866) 856-1279 or visit www.themeadows.com.

For over 35 years, The Meadows has been a leading trauma and addiction treatment center. In that time, they have helped more than 20,000 patients in one of their three inpatient centers and 25,000 attendees in national workshops. The Meadows world-class team of Senior Fellows, Psychiatrists, Therapists and Counselors treat the symptoms of addiction and the underlying issues that cause lifelong patterns of self-destructive behavior. The Meadows, with 24 hour nursing and on-site physicians and psychiatrists, is a Level 1 Sub-Acute Agency that is accredited by the Joint Commission.

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The Meadows' Senior Fellow, Dr. Shelley Uram, and Meadows' Psychiatrist, Dr. Jon Caldwell's presentation at the International Trauma Conference on Friday, May 31 can be accessed live via a webinar. For more information visit (outside link is no longer active) .

Dr. Uram and Dr. Caldwell's workshop "A Neurobiological Perspective on Trauma and Attachment and the Role of Mindfulness in the Healing Process," will be presented on Friday afternoon, May 31. In a manner that is easy to understand, they will identify ways that psychological trauma affects brain development and attachment relationships across the lifespan. Additionally, a mindfulness-based approach will be introduced for promoting attachment security in individuals with a history of trauma.

Dr. Uram, a Harvard trained, triple board-certified psychiatrist, is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. She speaks nationally and internationally and is best known for transforming the complexity of the brain and traumatology into interesting and easily understandable explanations. Dr. Caldwell is a board certified psychiatrist who specializes in the treatment of adults with relational trauma histories and addictive behaviors. For many years he has been teaching students, interns, residents, and professionals in medicine and mental health about how childhood adversity influences health and wellbeing. In November 2012, Dr. Caldwell was the recipient of a research grant from the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies (ISTSS) for his research proposal entitled "A Wait-List Controlled Study of a Mindfulness-Based Workshop for Promoting Attachment Security."

The focus of this year's conference is "Psychological Trauma: Neuroscience, Attachment, and Therapeutic Interventions." The conference goal is to present current research findings on how people's brains, minds, and bodies respond to traumatic experiences; how they regulate emotional and behavioral responses; and the role of relationships in protecting and restoring safety and regulation.

Published in Blog
Tuesday, 21 May 2013 20:00

Not This Time

By: Kevin Becker, Psy.D.

As a psychologist who has worked solely in the field of trauma for 24 years I am accustomed to getting phone calls and emails about tragedies that are happening somewhere in the world. But not this time. This time was different. I've lived in Boston since college and I've been all over the world to help people prepare for and respond to the awful things that happen in an unpredictable world. Those who know me and the type of work I do, will often ask me "so are you going to (fill in the blank)?" when they hear news reports of a particularly horrid disaster or violent incident. Usually of course I'm not going, there are just too many to respond to. But this time it was my town and I didn't have to go far to make use of my training

Within six hours of the bombing I had a first request for help from an agency who knew me from a previous tragedy they had suffered. In those first few hours we in Boston weren't really sure just how bad it was going to be. But it quickly became apparent that there were going to be many victims who had been deeply affected on many different levels. There would be no delay in the need for ongoing response and services that are still unfolding over a month later. I've been to disasters that have so devastated areas that it would be decades until they completely recover. That is not what I expect here but the true ripple effect of these tragic bombings is still unknown, as it continues to ripple.

The most unusual aspect of this crime, for me as a trauma professional, has been the unexpected twists that come with having it happen in my town. Usually when I spend day after day after day focused on a single tragic event, I am in someone else's town. But not this time. This time I would hear story after story of fear, life threat, anger and the like and then instead of retreating to a hotel room or debriefing with a team of others who were also away from home, I had to come home, to my house and my neighborhood. I had to be dad and husband and neighbor. Usually I'm afforded at least the length of a plane ride to make that transition. But not this time. Every day for two weeks I listened to stories and provided the education and support that we know helps the healing proceed. And at the end of the day I came home, turned it off and prepared for the next day. Of course after all these years my family recognizes the weight of the work I do. And thankfully they are caring, understanding, and terrifically therapeutic.

Ironically, one of my primary stress management tools is running. I've run the Boston Marathon twice and I have a wide circle of friends and running buddies who took part in this year's race. My extended family hosts a huge marathon party every year. My brother has made it a priority to only buy homes that are located on the marathon route because the race and race day are so special to us. So as often as I've seen someone else's special place or special event tragically altered by some form of violence or disaster, unfortunately for me and many others that's not how it went...not this time.

Kevin Becker, Psy.D. is former Director of The Trauma Center in Boston. He will moderate a panel of providers who were engaged in supporting marathon bombing victims at this year's 24th Annual International Trauma Conference. The conference, co-sponsored by The Meadows trauma and addiction treatment center and the Trauma Center at Justice Resource Institute, is adding a new workshop to its roster entitled "Marathon Bombing: Supporting Victims Across Systems." The conference is being held May 29, through June 1, 2013, in Boston at the Seaport World Trade Center. For more information visit http://www.themeadows.com/events/detail/international-trauma-conference.

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By: Nancy Bailey, PhD, Clinical Director at The Meadows

As we enter into the beautiful desert summer - I was reflecting on my professional journey with The Meadows. When I was hired at The Meadows in 2008 as a Workshop Facilitator, I knew that I was entering into a program of excellence and world recognition. After being in the field of mental health and addiction treatment for almost 20 years, when I stepped foot on the serene surroundings of the campus, I knew I was going to be part of something special.

The significance of the deep work offered to the patients at The Meadows is profound. During those first few years here, I was astounded week after week to see miracles occur and inner shifts transform peoples’ lives. I had been part of providing education and treatment for several years prior and spent many of those years focusing on treating complex women's issues. This work was deeper.

Transitioning from Workshop Facilitator to Intake Interventionist was the next step for me at The Meadows. This position offered me additional experience and multi-faceted perspectives in working with the referral resources, families, and patients at onset of their journey to find healing. This journey had many paths; often hearing and working through challenges of anticipatory anxiety, denial, minimization, extreme pain, and sadness; hoping that the loved one would take that huge step toward healing. Working side by side with the Intake Coordinators provided me with a newfound respect for the skill set needed to be relational from a distance while still engaging with therapeutic alliance and boundaries. Once again, The Model proved to be a hands-on and ongoing tapestry of daily living skills.

As The Meadows leadership continued to recognize the need for excellence, not only in patient care, but also in customer service - my position morphed into a clinically based business development role of Senior Clinical Liaison. Providing the bridge between business development, referral resource, interventionist, and clinical department again offered opportunities for personal and professional growth. Once again, Pia's Model provided a foundation for communication and boundary skills.

After a brief sabbatical to complete my PhD, I was honored to return to The Meadows in my current role of Clinical Director. Since taking the position as Clinical Director in September, many program enhancements have occurred and I continue to work with our Program Development team to assess and integrate better programming. I have the opportunity to work directly with some of the best thought leaders in the world in the areas of clinical excellence and research, as well as the pioneers who blazed the trails for family, codependency, and trauma treatment.  I also have the support of a forward thinking and extremely accessible administrative leadership team and board of directors to help me to integrate new treatment modalities and program enhancements to the already world renowned program The Meadows has been for over 35 years. Pia Mellody's Model still lays the foundation of The Meadows treatment. Cutting edge research and Senior Fellow advisors help me to develop and enhance our program to even higher levels of excellence. I am so excited to be a part of such a system of healing!

Professional journey imitates recovery journey - Life journey imitates recovery journey. As we remain engaged in a program of recovery, one day at a time, we will realize life "beyond our wildest dreams." Please stay tuned to our website and blog for ongoing events, announcements, and educational outreaches. Thank you to our Alumni and business professionals who continue to put your trust in The Meadows for excellence in patient care.

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The Meadows will offer Healing Intimate Treason: For Partners of Sex Addiction workshop the week of June 17 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday at The Meadows' campus.

This workshop was developed in collaboration with Meadows' Senior Fellow, Dr. Claudia Black, with a core foundation from her latest book Intimate Treason: Healing the Trauma for Partners Confronting Sex Addiction. Working from a clinical model based on addiction and trauma, participants will learn about the biology and the behavior of sex and love addiction and will explore their own relational templates.

The Partners of Sex Addiction workshop is an experientially-based workshop that will assist partners to move through their grief and loss, break free from the attachment to fantasy, and enhance emotional self-regulation. Developing both internal and external and sexual boundaries, participants will learn how to move from a position of victimization to personal empowerment.

"I am so pleased to collaborate with Dr. Claudia Black on this intensive new workshop," said Jean Collins, Director of Workshops at The Meadows. "It is very exciting that workshop participants are now getting the benefits of Dr. Black's return to The Meadows, as well as inpatients and their families."

To learn more about the Healing Intimate Treason: For Partners of Sex Addiction workshop, visit http://www.themeadows.com/workshops/healing-intimate-treason-workshop-for-partners-of-sex-addiction/.

Attending a Meadows' workshop offers an individual many benefits. A workshop can be a cost-effective alternative when long-term treatment is not an option. Individuals who cannot be away from their work or families for an extended period of time can attend a workshop and work on sensitive issues in a five-day concentrated format. This allows individuals to jump start their personal recovery by gaining insight into patterns and practicing new relational skills within a safe environment.

The Meadows is an industry leader in treating trauma and addiction through its inpatient and workshop programs. To learn more about The Meadows' work with trauma and addiction contact an intake coordinator at (866) 856-1279 or visit www.themeadows.com.

For over 35 years, The Meadows has been a leading trauma and addiction treatment center. In that time, they have helped more than 20,000 patients in one of their three inpatient centers and 25,000 attendees in national workshops. The Meadows world-class team of Senior Fellows, Psychiatrists, Therapists and Counselors treat the symptoms of addiction and the underlying issues that cause lifelong patterns of self-destructive behavior. The Meadows, with 24 hour nursing and on-site physicians and psychiatrists, is a Level 1 Sub-Acute Agency that is accredited by the Joint Commission.

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