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90 Minute Workshop Series

Applying Mentalisation-Based Therapy (MBT) With Dissociative Difficulties


Mentalising is the imaginative activity of thinking about mental states (thoughts, feelings, dreams, desires) in ourselves and other people. Mentalisation-Based Therapy has an expanding evidence as an effective therapeutic approach for people with complex mental health difficulties, across the age-range. Its focus on the impact of attachment difficulties, traumatic experiences, affect regulation, and neurobiological underpinnings, mean that it can offer a highly relevant formulation and therapeutic approach to working with people who dissociate. This workshop will outline how MBT can help to understand complex dissociation, and therapeutic strategies which can be applied.

Presenter: Helena Crockford,

Helena works as a Consultant Clinical Psychologist in adult mental health services in Norfolk. She has worked in a range of settings including community mental health teams, acute mental health wards, an acute day hospital, and low secure ward. She specialises in working with people with personality difficulties, complex trauma and dissociation and has found MBT particularly helpful when working with clients with these difficulties - also supporting multi-disciplinary staff to work with them.

She is registered with the British Psychoanalytic Council as an MBT Practitioner, having trained at the Anna Freud Centre, and also trained as a trainer, delivering regular training and supervision in MBT in her trust. She leads a Trust strategy for improving services for people with trauma-based dissociation, and values the partnership with experts-by-experience, who have helped co-produce this. She is a former chair of the Personality and Complex Trauma Network in the Psychosis and Complex Mental Health faculty of the Division of Clinical Psychology, BPS, and has recently edited a special edition of Clinical Psychology Forum on “Improving Services for Trauma-Related Dissociation”.