Love on the Spectrum: EFT and Autism Spectrum Disorder
Presented by Dr. Braden Josephson
Emotionally focused couple’s therapists often measure the success of therapy by a couple’s improved ability to send and to respond effectively to emotional cues. These emotional cues signal distress, longing, pleasure, care, and so much more. When the cues are sent out clearly and responded to effectively, couples experience an increase in their sense of connection and relationship satisfaction, and they use their relationship and their partner(s) as secure bases.
The presence of autistic features within one or both partners can be a unique challenge for therapists and couples to navigate, in part because neurological differences may disrupt emotional attunement, leading to attachment ruptures without repair and challenges with perspective taking. Partners may feel unseen and alone, and they may become resentful when their emotional needs are unmet. Couples become stuck in a cycle of pursuit via blame and withdrawal activated by shame. Further, therapists can find themselves drawn into the cycle via feelings of helplessness, hopelessness and a lack of direction for intervention.
This training is designed to educate therapists about the basics of autism and common ways that it presents within couples’ dynamics, and then to demonstrate why Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) remains an effective course of treatment. Therapists will walk away with a treatment map that helps them locate and connect with couples in the EFT stages of treatment, utilize the 5 steps of the Tango, and assist couples in creating new, positive cycles where partners become more accessible, responsive, and engaged.
Join the Philadelphia Center for Emotionally Focused Therapy (PCEFT) and presenter Braden Josephson for this 2-hour online training on Monday, March 20, 2023, 12-2PM EST.