Full Course Description

2-Day: Healing from Toxic Relationships: Help Your Clients Recover from Gaslighting, Narcissism, and Emotional Abuse

Toxic relationships come in all types— romantic partners, business partners, parents, siblings, friends…

and everyone, at some point in their lives, has experienced a toxic relationship.

As a therapist you’ll encounter at least one client a month who is preparing to leave or has left a toxic relationship. They’re emotionally fragile, so being well-educated on how to provide the best care for your client is a must - as well as how to deal with your own feelings of frustration when your client returns to the toxic relationship.

Stephanie Sarkis PhD is the author of the best-selling books Gaslighting: Recognize Manipulative and Emotionally Abusive People— and Break Free and Toxic Relationships: Help Your Clients Recover from Gaslighting, Narcissism, and Emotional Abuse.

Watch Dr. Sarkis, for this LIVE two-day webinar where she shows you, through evidence-based practice: trauma-informed therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, solution-focused therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy, case studies and her 20 years of experience, how to help clients rebuild their lives after the trauma of a toxic relationship:

  • Knowing what to do when your client gets “hooked” on the cycle of abuse & reconciliation
  • Client who continues to seek out similar toxic relationships
  • Moving on without closure
  • Letting go of anger and self-blame
  • Establishing boundaries
  • Practicing self-care
  • Grief – working through the loss
  • Rebuilding emotionally healthy relationships

Don’t miss out on getting answers to an all-too common but underdiscussed personality type!

Purchase today!

Program Information


  1. Employ evidence-based practice from trauma-informed therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, solution-focused therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, and cognitive-behavioral therapy to assist clients in rebuilding their lives.
  2. Assess suicidality effectively and treat it through integrative psychodynamic psychotherapy and dialectical behavior therapy.  
  3. Determine a diagnosis of complex PTSD through trauma-informed interviewing skills. 
  4. Evaluate the research-based benefits of altruism through volunteering in increasing self-esteem and self-efficacy.
  5. Analyze how parental alienation further traumatizes clients and their children.
  6. Build 10 tools to help clients reestablish healthy boundaries via research-based activities.
  7. Utilize clinical strategies to uncover and heal client’s family-of-origin trauma.
  8. Minimize symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder through trauma-informed therapeutic techniques.
  9. Prescribe individualized therapeutic care to improve client engagement when discussing experience of abuse.
  10. Determine level of family-of-origin pathology in order to inform choice of treatment interventions.
  11. Demonstrate knowledge of vicarious trauma for purposes of reducing clinician burnout.
  12. Diagnose complex post-traumatic stress disorder in a clinical setting.


Neurochemical Cycle of Abuse: Every Day is a Recovery

  • Harder to leave when trauma bonding has occurred
  • Abuse = cortisol levels and adrenaline increases
  • Reconciliation = dopamine and oxytocin increase
  • Client’s brain can get addicted to this cycle
  • Withdrawal and/or reframing grief after the relationship (i.e., drug withdrawal)

Phases of Toxic Relationships – Cycle of Abuse

  • Attachment Style – Predictor of abuse vulnerability
  • Idealizing - Relationship begins - seems too good to be true, pressured commitment
  • Devaluing - Toxic person starts emotional abuse, eventually ramps up into physical abuse
  • Discarding - Client discovers toxic person’s infidelity, “financial cheating” or toxic person leaves

Results of Toxic Relationships

  • Complicated grief
  • Questioning what was “real” in the Relationship
  • Complex PTSD
  • Dissociative episodes
  • Brief psychotic episode
  • Dissociative identity disorder
  • Suicidality
  • Case study: Sarah, a 52-year-old female who is experiencing complex grief as a result of an abusive family of origin and abusive relationship

Returning to the Toxic Relationship

  • Leave toxic relationships at least three times before they leave for good or are killed
  • Abusers “hoover” victims to get their “narcissistic supply”
  • Therapists may start “fixing” rather than supporting client – codependent behavior

Solution-Focused Therapy to Relearn Self-Care

  • Creating future plans
  • Emotional and physical safety
  • ADL’s – in extreme cases
  • Reconnecting with healthcare (infidelity, etc)
  • Seeking injunction – restraining order
  • Reframing self-care as a necessity rather than a luxury
  • Case study: James, a 53-year-old male relearning basic life skills that were lost as a result of severe abuse and depression

Trauma-Informed Therapy to Break Free from Codependence

  • Multicultural therapy’s view that codependence is a culture-bound term
  • Multi-cultural implication – divorce, religious, traditional gender roles/abuse
  • Determining clients “secondary gain” from codependent behavior

Toxic Family of Origin

  • Abuse can be intergenerational
  • Family of origin substance abuse
  • “Splitting” - golden child and a scapegoat child
  • Siblings may maintain dysfunctional roles into adulthood
  • Using genograms to identify client’s familial behavior patterns
  • Transgenerational family therapy
  • Caregiving and elderly toxic parents

Existential Therapy Tools to Manage Suicidality

  • Best way to assess for suicidality according to research
  • Myths about suicidal behavior
  • Hidden signs of suicidality
  • Evidence-based treatment of suicidality resulting from abuse
  • Case study: Emma, a 17-year-old who has ended an abusive relationship

Coparenting with a Toxic Personality

  • Parental alienation
  • Using detailed parenting plan
  • Resources available - parent coordinator, family law attorney (some do pro bono work)
  • Communicate via a coparenting app
  • Case study: Ian, a 48-year-old who is learning how to coparent with their ex-partner who has been diagnosed with narcissistic personality disorder.

DBT & Grief Therapy Techniques to Redefine Closure

  • Toxic person will not give closure
  • Toxic people keep exes and friends “in rotation”
  • Helping clients find their own closure
  • Forgiveness is not necessary for closure
  • Dangers of pushing an agenda of forgiveness on clients
  • Sometimes closure is not possible
  • Clients can have fulfilling lives without closure or forgiveness

Reconnecting with Trusted Friends and Family

  • Reassessing emotional health of client’s loved ones
  • Client’s level of disclosure about the abuse to friends and family – how much is too much
  • Case study: Jimmy, a 28-year-old male reconnecting with family after going no-contact with his mother

ACT & Trauma-Focused Techniques to Help Client Forgive Themselves

  • Forgiving can be a continual process
  • Empty chair and writing techniques
  • CBT – changing inner dialogue (to non-violent communication)
  • Altruism as pathway to healing volunteerism – increase self-esteem and self-concept

The Power of Language in Session

  • When to refer to a relationship as “abusive”
  • Go at same pace of your client
  • Ask client what words they prefer
  • Some words can be triggers
  • Case Study: Sheila, a 38-year-old mother of two who feels she is the cause of the difficulties in her marriage

Trauma-Informed and Solution Focused Therapy - Prepare for Life After a Toxic Relationship

  • Helping clients identify signs of a healthy person
  • Addressing client’s concerns about a healthy relationship feeling “boring”
  • Addiction to the excitement of a toxic relationship
  • Reviewing client’s progress

TIPS for Therapists

  • Attend regular therapy sessions and clinical supervision
  • Beware of client’s experiences triggering your trauma
  • Expect to be contacted by abuser
  • You may be involved in litigation
  • Protecting yourself and your practice
  • Look for signs of burnout
  • Practice proactive self-care

Target Audience

  • Mental health professionals who specialize in women’s issues, work in domestic violence shelters, work with LGBTQIA+ clients, marriage and family therapists, and therapists that work in private practice, group settings, inpatient, and at schools.
  • Members of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, American Psychological Association, American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists, and American Mental Health Counseling Association would benefit.

Copyright : 11/10/2022

Disarming the Narcissist in Couples Therapy

Is successful couples therapy even possible when one of the partners won’t admit their flaws or reflect on how their behavior impacts the other person?

In this can’t miss session, best-selling author, therapist and narcissist expert, Wendy Behary guides you through the techniques you can use to disarm these clients in couples work and give their partners the tools they need to set limits and draw the line on unacceptable behavior.

Program Information


  1. Use empathic confrontation to gain leverage and maintain consistent treatment.
  2. Develop skills to set limits with narcissists and hold them accountable in the therapeutic environment.
  3. Use the therapeutic relationship to help generalize adapted behaviors from the treatment room into the narcissist’s life.


  • Empathic confrontation for leverage
  • Limit setting
  • Accountability and meeting unmet needs

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychologists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners
  • Therapists
  • Art Therapists
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Physicians
  • Nurses
  • Other Mental Health Professionals

Copyright : 01/27/2022

Disarming the Narcissist in The Treatment Room: A Clinician’s Guide to Overcoming Manipulation, Aggression, and Resistance

Narcissists are notoriously difficult clients. While often intelligent, charming, and self-confident, they also tend to be highly self-absorbed, arrogant, demanding, condescending, incapable of empathy, and possessed with a sense of entitlement. As therapists, the complexities of the narcissist can arouse our curiosity but treating them can arouse our sense of inadequacy.

While their exploitative and arrogant demeanor can leave you weary, irritated, intimidated and even defeated—all you really want is to feel competent, confident, and effective with making a difference in their lives; and even more so, in the lives of the narcissist’s family.

Watch best-selling author and narcissist expert, Wendy T. Behary, MSW, LCSW, as she guides you through highly effective techniques that have transformed her clinical practice!

Wendy’s innovative techniques will help you navigate and breakthrough narcissistic self-defeating patterns and achieve enduring change! Learn how to skillfully:

  • Set healthy limits, bypass obstacles, hold the client accountable
  • Confront avoidance, approval-seeking, entitlement, and aggression
  • Connect with the vulnerable part of the narcissist
  • Conquer the most challenging moments in sessions

That’s right, no more feeling frustrated with the lack of treatment progress. No more feeling intimidated and defeated. No more feelings of dread in the pit of your stomach when their name is on your schedule!

Purchase today, to learn how to transform your treatment approach to these challenging clients!

Program Information


  1. Demonstrate specific clinical strategies to apply with narcissistic clients.
  2. Integrate concepts from interpersonal neurobiology as powerful tools for accelerating treatment effectiveness.
  3. Categorize personal schemas and modes accurately to overcome major obstacles to treatment.
  4. Utilize self-work to bypass intense personal triggers, activated by the narcissist.
  5. Create and adapt custom-fitting scripts to fortify leverage, to utilize “empathic confrontation” and to set limits…under a variety of conditions relevant to narcissism.
  6. Utilize the “Therapy Relationship” as an effective strategy for changing maladaptive reactions; and as powerful agent for change – generalizing newly adapted behaviors from the treatment room to the narcissist’s world.


Narcissism Along a Spectrum: Origins and Subtypes

  • Conceptualization of narcissism and early unmet emotional needs
  • Narcissism, DSM® and Schema Theory
  • Entitled types
  • Full-blown character pathology
  • Sociopathic profiles
  • Imbedded states of mind
  • Limitations of related research and risks
Connecting with Your Narcissistic Client
  • Root causes of unmet needs and maladaptive coping styles
  • Develop compassion and empathy for your client
  • How to attend to your client’s deepest vulnerabilities
  • Safely disarming highly effective defense mechanisms
  • Modes and schema of the narcissistic client
  • Manage countertransference
Treating the Narcissist: From Assessment to Enduring Change
  • Linking problematic behavior with early maladaptive experiences
  • Identify/bypass the detached modes in order to access the lonely child
  • Address intellectualism, avoidance, and approval-seeking barriers
  • The power of candid “realness” to build trust
  • Confront overcompensating grandiosity
  • Effectively tackle aggressiveness – taking the “high road”
  • Specific assessment tools to guide treatment
  • Establish agreements regarding mutual respect
Overcoming the Challenges of Treating a Narcissistic Client
  • Ways to remain sturdy, credible, and empathic to masked vulnerability
  • How to respond when being provoked
  • Avoid sabotaging impulses: How to reconcile our own schemas and modes when activated
  • Gaining leverage—Identify meaningful consequences to maintain consistent treatment
  • Working with the narcissist’s spouse or significant other
How to Implement Interventions: Demonstrations and Role Plays
  • Video presentation/case discussion
  • Imagery
  • Cognitive and emotion-focused chair work: Mode dialogues
  • Empathic confrontation
  • The power of the therapeutic relationship
  • Limit setting

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Psychotherapists
  • Psychologists
  • Social Workers
  • Case Managers
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Nurses
  • Physicians
  • Mental Health Professionals
  • Occupational Therapists

Copyright : 07/16/2021

Schema Therapy Strategies: Treat Hypersexual Narcissism, Trauma, Gaslighting, Shame & Attachment Wounds

It can be uncomfortable for you… but it’s essential for therapy…

When working your narcissistic clients you likely encounter shame, maladaptive coping patterns, gaslighting, hypersexual tendencies & more.

You need to get the skills to apply strategic, targeted techniques to decrease defensives, change underlying themes & challenge problematic personality traits.

Learn the skills to compassionately confront your narcissistic clients. Watch Wendy Behary, MSW, LCSW, and get strategies from Schema Therapy to help your narcissistic clients meet early unmet needs. Get techniques to work with:

  • Early maladaptive schemas by applying emotion-focused techniques
  • Clients’ self-demands for extraordinary performance, special entitlements, overindulgence & more
  • Sexual preoccupations – pornography, cyber relationships, affairs, sadomasochism & other eroticism

YOU can improve your clients’ relationships, treat shame & heal early traumatic attachment wounds to change their lives.

Purchase now and make your toughest cases easier!

Program Information


  1. Conceptualize the primary mode responsible for seeking hypersexual stimulation, i.e., understand motivational drivers behind early unmet needs.
  2. Appraise client’s develop and narrative related to emotional distortions (i.e., arousal fantasy).
  3. Construct schema therapy interventions for clients’ compensatory and detached coping modes, rigid rationalizations and defiant denial of the harmful impact on self and partners.
  4. Apply effective emotion-focused strategies designed to meet the primary unmet needs related to shame, failure, and unconditional love/acceptance.


Prepare for Therapy & How to Assess

  • Identify hallmark signs of betrayal trauma
  • Assess and explore sexual patterns & experiences
  • Explore different expressions of narcissism in men & women
  • What to do when the partner is the perpetrator 
Treatment Strategies & Interventions
  • How to break through defensiveness
  • Treat sexual preoccupations – pornography, cyber-sexual relationships, affairs, sadomasochism & other eroticism
  • Emotion focused strategies to correct early maladaptive schemas
  • Deconstruct clients’ self-demands for extraordinary performance, special entitlements, overindulgence & more
  • Help clients re-appraise devalued emotional vulnerability
Helping Clients’ Beyond the Therapy Room
  • Confront clients’ bullying, critical attitudes & approval seeking modes
  • Help narcissists understand how hypersexual affects their romantic partner
    • Help re-establish trust
    • Slow down the inner-critic
    • Engage partner in treatment process
    • Support partner experiencing betrayal trauma
    • Undo toxic shame, resentments & regrets
Plus case studies, video demonstrations & troubleshooting therapy obstacles & more!
Sign up today!

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychologists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners
  • Therapists
  • Art Therapists
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Physicians
  • Nurses
  • Other Mental Health Professionals

Copyright : 05/11/2022

Narcissism and Intimacy: Coming Down from Grandiosity and Up from Shame

People think narcissism is a disorder of too much self-love; actually it’s too little. Lacking self-esteem, narcissists filter their sense of wellbeing through admiration, external success, acquisition, and power.  In this session you’ll view Terry Real, internationally recognized therapist, best-selling author and one of today’s most innovative voices in treating men and their relationships as he shows you how healing comes from emotional reconnection to themselves and those around them.

Program Information


  1. Analyze the treatment implications of the different types of narcissistic clients.
  2. Evaluate the impacts of family of origin on narcissistic clients.
  3. Employ clinical strategies to teach relationality in the context of current relationships.
  4. Utilize techniques in therapy to help couples rebalance power differentials.
  5. Use non-judgement therapeutic strategies to shift the grandiose client’s understanding of relationships from power and control to collaboration and intimacy.


  • Identify the difference between shame and grandiosity
  • The roots of grandiosity: shame and false empowerment
  • Strategies to bring narcissists down from grandiosity, up from shame and into connection

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychologists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners
  • Therapists
  • Art Therapists
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Physicians
  • Nurses
  • Other Mental Health Professionals

Copyright : 01/28/2022

Grief and Narcissistic Relationships: Clinical Skills to Process Past, Present and Future Losses

From grieving a childhood of neglect, to mourning the loss of the rosy-colored glasses that kept them in a cycle of abuse as adults, grief echoes through the lives of clients who are in, or have left, narcissistic relationships. And processing that grief is a crucial element in their healing.

In this session watch licensed therapist and best-selling author Amy Marlow-MaCoy, LPC, and discover how to help clients identify losses of the past, present, and future, and come to terms with the ambiguity of grieving a person or relationship that may never be resolved.

Program Information


  1. Employ a past, present and future perspective to help clients facing ambiguous loss manage the pain of the past, find closure, and envision a future after the “death” of a relationship.
  2. Support clients in exploring all dimensions of grief, including what did and did not happen.
  3. Use trauma informed interventions to help clients manage feelings of shame and guilt after the death of an estranged loved one.


  • How grief manifests in the therapeutic relationship
  • Sticking spots for clients grieving past, present and future losses
  • How ambivalence, ambiguous loss, and complicated bereavement impact client recovery
  • Clinical skills to process grief and guilt that occurs when relationships end or change due to estrangement rather than death

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychologists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners
  • Therapists
  • Art Therapists
  • Marriage & Family Therapists
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Physicians
  • Nurses
  • Other Mental Health Professionals

Copyright : 01/27/2022