Story Healing Therapy: Addressing Intergenerational Trauma and Internalized Oppression

Live Broadcast Date*:
Friday, November 3, 2023

Live Broadcast Time*:
1:00 pm – 4:15 pm ET

Convert to your local time here

*Can’t Attend Live? This webinar will be recorded and archived. All registrants will be given unlimited access to the recording for a full year after the live broadcast date.

Intergenerational trauma refers to the transmission of historical traumatic and oppressive events from one generation to the next, impacting an individual’s mental health. This workshop explores the effects of intergenerational trauma and internalized oppression, particularly how systemic violence perpetuates within families, leading to the repetition of survival patterns.

For example, in the context of colonial violence, survival strategies such as “keeping one’s head down,” “trying to pass without unnoticed,” or “assimilating to prove oneself” have been ingrained within families. These dynamics manifest as feelings of inadequacy, shrinking oneself, and experiencing impostor syndrome.

Unfortunately, these survival strategies may have prevented our ancestors from fully embracing their natural ways of being and traditions, which could have provided a path to safety for future generations. Internalized oppression contributes to a sense of rootlessness and disconnection from one’s ancestry and family, leading to experiences of displacement and feeling invisible. This can result in isolation and depression.

Clients who experience internalized oppression may feel anxiety due to the constant need to prove themselves in a society that fails to recognize their whole and acceptable identities. Hyper-vigilance becomes a coping mechanism for personal safety in an unsafe society (e.g., African American individuals interacting with the police or Latino/a/x individuals interacting with Immigration Customs Enforcement).

In one BIPOC client’s case, she only recognized the impact of domestic violence on her family’s mental health after witnessing her children’s symptoms of PTSD. Previously, she and her relatives had accepted domestic violence as a normal part of family life, stemming from a survival response. Witnessing her child’s struggles transformed her perspective on the abuse.

Research indicates that intergenerational trauma affects psychological well-being, family dynamics, social-cultural traditions, neurobiology, and genetic structure (DeAngelis, 2019). It becomes ingrained in our stories and influences how we perceive ourselves. However, trauma is not our origin story; it serves as a filter to our narrative. Our true origin story lies in our inherent dignity, deeply embedded in our bodies.

Story healing, a therapeutic framework explored in this workshop, equips clients with tools to heal and embrace their stories. It incorporates an understanding of intergenerational trauma and internalized oppression, identification of survival responses and symptoms, and holistic approaches to connecting with and honoring one’s narrative of dignity.

Therapists attending this course will gain essential knowledge and skills in assessing and treating intergenerational trauma and internalized oppression. By recognizing that depression or anxiety in BIPOC clients may stem from their experiences with intergenerational trauma, therapists can provide more comprehensive and effective treatment. This course empowers therapists to join clients on their healing journey, deepening their understanding of intergenerational trauma and building trust. Therapists will acquire therapeutic techniques to assist clients in processing trauma and promoting healing.

  • Develop a working definition of intergenerational trauma and internalized oppression.
  • Identify the signs and symptoms of intergenerational trauma.
  • Incorporate a neuropsychological framework for the impact of intergenerational trauma.
  • Incorporate genograms in story healing work.
  • Develop resourcing through the integration of embodiment.
  • Identify the resiliencies, blooms, and frames rooted in dignity for self and story.

This training offers 3 hours of direct contact (not counting breaks or lunch). It is the participant’s responsibility to check with their individual state boards/regulatory body to verify CE requirements for their license to practice.

For Live Broadcast Attendees

Webinar attendance by participants is automatically tracked, documented and archived for future reference. Upon confirming you have attended 100% of the webinar and upon completion of a course evaluation, you will be issued a certificate of participation (see below).

For Attendees of the On-Demand/Recorded Version

If you cannot verify 100% attendance of the Live Broadcast or if you are watching the on-demand/recorded version of this webinar, you will need to complete a Post-Webinar Quiz with a pass of at least 80% in order to verify your attendance.

For US Participants

  • Instructions on how to obtain your Certificate of Attendance will be distributed either upon completion of the Live Broadcast or after participants pass the Post-Webinar Quiz following the On-Demand/Recorded version of the webinar.

Click here for more info about CEs for US participants

For Canadian and International Participants

Upon fulfillment of the above requirements, Canadian and international participants will be issued a Certificate of Participation that includes:

  • Name of Participant
  • Title of Training
  • Name of Presenter plus their credentials
  • Number of hours of training
  • Date of training
  • Confirmation that you have passed a quiz with at least an 80% grade to verify your attendance

Please check carefully with your regulating body/organization that this certificate is sufficient proof for you to claim CEUs.

Click here for more information about continuing education for Canadians and non-US international participants.

  • DeAnza Spaulding, PhD
1:00 - 2:00 pm

- Understanding and defining the signs and symptoms of intergenerational trauma and internalized oppression
- Q&A

2:00 - 2:30 pm

- Apply a neuropsychological approach to comprehend the effects of intergenerational trauma
- Q&A

2:30 - 2:45 pm


2:45 - 3:15 pm

- Integrate genograms into narrative healing practices
- Q&A

3:15 - 4:15 pm

- Resourcing through embodiment integration
- Defining and understanding the strengths, growth opportunities, and frameworks centered around self-value and narrative
- Q&A and wrap up

Event Detail

November 3, 2023 1:00 pm
November 3, 2023 4:15 pm

Who Should Attend

  • Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Clinical and Counselling Psychologists
  • Psychiatric Social Workers
  • Pastoral Counsellors
  • Psychotherapists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Physicians
  • Nurse Practitioners
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Counsellors
  • Graduate Students in accredited programs in the above fields
  • Case Managers
  • Licensed Professional Counsellors
  • All other professionals who would like to develop, update or expand their skills and knowledge in mental health practices

Recommended level of knowledge: