Cultural Betrayal, Sexual Abuse, & Black Women: Healing Perspectives from Relational Cultural Therapy, the Liberation Health Framework, & Dreamstorming

October 26, 2024

Abstract
In this three-hour workshop, Dr. Gómez will center U.S. Black women as relates to their lifetime histories of sexual abuse. In the first half of the workshop, she will provide a basic primer on structural racism (Neblett, 2022) and intersectional oppression (e.g., interlocking racism and sexism; Collins, 2017) that impact Black women. She then will detail her research with cultural betrayal trauma theory (CBTT; e.g., Giroux et al., 2023), which she created as a Black feminist scientific framework for examining the unique cultural betrayal harm of within-group violence in marginalized communities, including specifically Black male perpetrated sexual abuse against Black women. According to CBTT, (intra)cultural trust, such as solidarity in the Black community, is a protective factor against racism and intersectional oppression. As a violation of (intra)cultural trust, within-group violence is a cultural betrayal trauma. Research has shown that cultural betrayal trauma is associated with mental health outcomes, such as dissociation, and cultural outcomes, such as internalized prejudice (Howard Valdivia et al., 2023). Building on this foundation, Dr. Gómez will then discuss relational cultural therapy (RCT; Jordan, 2017), an evidence-informed therapeutic approach that centers both the therapeutic relationship and the client’s context in healing. She will close this first half of the workshop by applying the tenets of RCT to a Black woman survivor of cultural betrayal trauma, Nikiya (pseudonym). The second half of the workshop will focus specifically on systems-level harm and avenues for change. First, she will introduce the liberation health framework from Belkin and Martinez as a model for incorporating cultural competency into therapy: 1) connecting clients’ mental health with their social conditions, such as oppression and trauma; 2) focusing solutions on both individual and societal levels; 3) centralizing the client’s worldview and understanding of their life into treatment; 4) promoting critical consciousness and agency within clients, while focusing on the impact of oppression in their lives; and 5) engaging in collaboration with clients in all facets of treatment. Given the role of institutions in both harm and healing, Dr. Gómez will shift to focusing on institutional change. From her book, The Cultural Betrayal of Black Women & Girls: A Black Feminist Approach to Healing from Sexual Abuse, she will share an excerpt of a U.S. White woman doctor’s sexual violence and negligence against Nikiya (pseudonym), a Black women patient and survivor of cultural betrayal trauma. Within this example, she will identify the institutional betrayals, institutional courage steps to remedy the harm, and dreamstorming of a world in which all doctor’s visits could be culturally competent and trauma-informed. Finally, Dr. Gómez will close by discussing the necessity of hope amidst belonging to institutions and societies that remain violent and unequal.  

Video: Introduction to the Liberation Health Model- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fn5EnbeBIK0&t=246s 

Potential to Distress: Yes

Timed Outline
20 Minutes - Racism, Intersectional Oppression
20 Minutes - Cultural Betrayal Trauma Theory
30 Minutes - Relational Cultural Therapy
20 Minutes - Discussion
30 Minutes - Break
20 Minutes - Liberation Health Model
30 Minutes - Institutional Courage
10 Minutes - Conclusion
30 Minutes - Discussion
 

Target Audience

Advanced

Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of this presentation participants will be able to:

  • Define three primary aspects of cultural betrayal trauma theory: (intra)cultural trust, cultural betrayal trauma, and cultural outcomes
  • Identify examples of therapeutic strategies at the structural, interpersonal, and individual levels
  •  Define institutional betrayal, institutional courage, and dreamstorming within the context of health care settings
Course summary
Available credit: 
  • 3.00 APA
    The International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation maintains responsibility for this program and its content.
  • 3.00 ASWB ACE
    The International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISSTD), #1744, is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved as ACE providers. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. ISSTD maintains responsibility for this course. ACE provider approval period: 08/20/2021 – 08/20/2024. Social workers completing this course receive 3.00 continuing education credits.
  • 3.00 ISSTD Certificate Program
    This program is eligible for 3.00 credits in the ISSTD Certificate Program.
Course opens: 
05/01/2024
Course expires: 
12/31/2024
Event starts: 
10/26/2024 - 2:00pm EDT
Event ends: 
10/26/2024 - 5:30pm EDT
Rating: 
0

Jennifer M Gómez, PhD
Jennifer M Gómez, PhD, earned her doctorate in clinical psychology from the University of Oregon in 2017. She is an Assistant Professor at the School of Social Work and Faculty Affiliate at the Center for Innovation in Social Work & Health at Boston University. Additionally, she serves on the Boards of the Center for Institutional Courage and End Rape On Campus. At ISSTD, she is a member of the Board, Scientific Committee, and Annual Conference Committee, and is a co-editor of the upcoming special issue of Journal of Trauma & Dissociation on intersectional oppression, dissociation, and healing in diverse marginalized people. Dr. Gómez’ research centers around cultural betrayal trauma theory (CBTT), which she created as a Black feminist theoretical framework for examining the impact of violence within the context of inequality on Black and other marginalized populations. Her research has been published in over 100 peer-reviewed journals, books, newsletters, regional and national media outlets, and the Open Science Framework. Her work has been funded by the Ford Foundation Fellowships Program, administered by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, & Medicine (NASEM), the Michigan Center for Urban African American Aging Research (MCUAAAR)—National Institute on Aging (NIA), and the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS) at Stanford University. Her transdisciplinary book, “The Cultural Betrayal of Black Women & Girls: A Black Feminist Approach to Healing from Sexual Abuse”, published by the American Psychological Association, won the 2024 ISSTD Frank W. Putnam Outstanding Book Award. In her book, Dr. Gómez centers Black women and girls through incorporating basic research on racism, intersectional oppression, and cultural betrayal trauma theory, as well as application in the form of culturally competent trauma therapy, radical healing in the Black community, and institutional courage to promote systems-level change. https://jmgomez.org 

Available Credit

  • 3.00 APA
    The International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation maintains responsibility for this program and its content.
  • 3.00 ASWB ACE
    The International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISSTD), #1744, is approved to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Organizations, not individual courses, are approved as ACE providers. State and provincial regulatory boards have the final authority to determine whether an individual course may be accepted for continuing education credit. ISSTD maintains responsibility for this course. ACE provider approval period: 08/20/2021 – 08/20/2024. Social workers completing this course receive 3.00 continuing education credits.
  • 3.00 ISSTD Certificate Program
    This program is eligible for 3.00 credits in the ISSTD Certificate Program.
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