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Digital Recordings

Breaking the Bonds of Sexual Trauma: Using Resiliency-Based Clinical Strategies to Help Survivors Restore Their Lives

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Melissa (Missy) Bradley-Ball, MS, NCC, BCETS, FAAETS
5 Hours 44 Minutes
Audio and Video
Sep 28, 2017
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Digital Recordings


A Restored Life is Within Reach for Survivors of Sexual Trauma

The statistics are startling. Every 2 minutes in the United States, a person is a victim of a sexual assault. Over the last twenty years, 4.2 million Americans have been sexually traumatized. This is a seismic event that crosses racial, gender, and socioeconomic lines to impact every facet of a person’s being.  It is at the heart of many presenting issues that clinicians encounter in their practices, including relationship challenges, substance abuse disorders, and chronic health problems. Current clinical approaches often miss the mark, overlooking the most essential and complicating factors of treatment.

This contributes to clients regressing and identifying even more strongly with their trauma. 

Now there is hope for these survivors and those who love them. Melissa Bradley-Ball, an esteemed trainer and speaker on issues of trauma and resiliency, guides you through a resilience-based, multi-modal approach that emphasizes the possibility of post-traumatic growth. Help your clients identify and avoid the activation rituals in their lives. Involve the larger family as important team members in the healing process. Use proven somatic grounding, energy psychology, and cognitive-behavioral techniques to help clients in their heroic journey toward restoration.



This online program is worth 5.75 hours CPD.



Melissa (Missy) Bradley-Ball, MS, NCC, BCETS, FAAETS's Profile

Melissa (Missy) Bradley-Ball, MS, NCC, BCETS, FAAETS Related seminars and products

Melissa (Missy) Bradley-Ball, MS, NCC, BCETS, FAAETS, is a nationally recognized clinical educator, corporate consultant, family mediator, and author with over 37 years of experience as a psychotherapist, providing individual, group, and family therapy. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Music Education and Master of Counseling Psychology from the University of Tennessee. Her extensive EMDR training (Level I, II, and specialized protocols) helped her become a trailblazer in the field of sexual trauma through a Resilience and Post-Traumatic Growth model and she often trains personnel at medical/mental health agencies, universities, school systems, and other facilities. An in-demand Child Sexual Abuse Investigator, expert court witness, and subject matter expert on sexual assault with the Pentagon, Mrs. Bradley-Ball has conducted seminars for more than 300,000 medical, behavioral health, law enforcement, educators, clergy, and military personnel, as well as members of the public throughout the U.S., Canada, and Central America. She was a primary speaker for the first National Conference on Post-Traumatic Growth in 2011. 

Her frequent keynote addresses at regional and national conferences – as well as television and radio news broadcasts – have won her the Scripps Howard Award for Broadcasting Excellence, the Edward R. Murrow Award, and numerous other accolades. She is currently working on a PBS special about the heroic journey of children healing from divorce. 


Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Melissa Bradley Ball is the owner of The Heroic Journey. She receives a speaking honorarium and recording royalties from PESI, Inc. She has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Melissa Bradley Ball is a Fellow and Diplomat of the American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress and a member of the American Counseling Association.


  1. Determine appropriate treatment protocol based on the client’s level of functioning
  2. Explain sexualized trauma composites and how to dismantle them as it related to case conceptualization
  3. Describe how to incorporate resources in to the therapeutic session when working with victims of sexual trauma
  4. Describe how to incorporate the heroic journey resiliency model in to the therapeutic session when working with victims of sexual trauma
  5. Apply macro and micro aspects of a client’s story to promote safe and effective trauma processing in-session
  6. Choose a treatment plan that addresses the unique needs of victims of military sexual trauma and human trafficking



  • Assessing the client’s trauma composite
  • Effectively and safely working with the micro and macro story
  • The #1 factor contributing to PTSD and long-term intimacy disruption, and how to deal with it


  • Victim
    • Creating safety, support, therapeutic alliance, & skills
    • Building the resilience bridge 
  • Survivor
    • Helping clients integrate the trauma into their life narrative
    • Grieving and mourning well
  • Thriver
    • The heroic narrative is integrated
    • Trust in self and in the life process is restored


  • Trauma activation rituals, trauma composites, and sexualized trauma composites
  • Repetition and why it happens
  • How to direct the ritual
  • Recognizing and dismantling trauma composites
  • Themis: the often hidden PRIMARY trauma
  • Somatic, cognitive, behavioral, emotional, and sensory details
  • Sexual trauma reactivation over the course of a lifespan
  • Developmental (possible) “flare up” times
  • Medical: reactivation of sexual trauma
  • When medical issues mimic sexual trauma


  • Assessing strengths and deficits of post-traumatic growth
  • Considerations and implementations with different approaches
  • Group
  • Couple
  • Individual
  • Family
  • Setting up resources
    • Somatic grounding-creating safety and resetting natural survival responses
    • Energy psychology approaches
    • Cognitive-behavioral approaches and creation of positive portfolios
    • “Preparing the team”
    • Making sense of the trauma, and finding purpose from it
      • The “heroic journey” resilience narrative
      • Utilizing movies and literature as resources
      • Assisting the client to incorporate resources from their spiritual tradition
      • Memories (micro or macro)-titrating the pain and incorporating the narrative

    Adjunct Therapies

    • Bodywork: Breema, Reiki, massage, acupuncture, and more
    • Appropriate timing for encouraging the use of other resources

    Special Topics for Consideration

    • Working with sexually avoidant clients and their partners
    • Working with “promiscuity”: is it trauma re-enactment?
    • Working with trauma clients with BDSM lifestyles
    • Working with victims of military sexual trauma and human trafficking

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Psychologists
  • Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Counselors
  • Psychiatrists
  • Educators
  • Case Managers
  • Chaplains/Clergy
  • Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners


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