Promoting Healthy Attachments: Hands-on Techniques to use with your Clients

Presented and developed by Deborah Gray, MSW, MPA

Attachment security is fundamental in building healthy families. This workshop describes the latest thinking in attachment practice, as well as what to do in the therapy hour when working with children or adult’s attachment issues. We will discuss ways to assess attachment, both in children and adults, with methods to facilitate healthy attachments and better stress regulation in families.

Deborah will describe body-based techniques to help with the formation of attachment. She will provide case examples of therapy approaches that move families into more satisfying patterns of attachment. The class will analyze the realities of dysregulation and attachment difficulties due to parents’ past traumas or attachment insecurity—as well as the way forward into better attachment patterns.

The day’s training includes scripts and examples that are effective accommodations for children after toxic stress and/or prenatal exposure to alcohol or drugs. Prevention of future attachment problems will be addressed as the class learns about attachment-informed transition schedules when children must move between families.

We will also  look at the therapists’ own attachment histories, the patterns of engagement or avoidance as a result of their histories, and methods to work with countertransference. This workshop will be fast-paced, practical, and positive--equipping therapists with skills and concepts to use in their own practices

Continuing Education (CE) Information

6 CEs

Deborah Gray, MSW, MPA

Deborah Gray, MSW, MPA described as "attachment guru" by Adoptive Families Magazine, specializes in attachment, grief, and trauma issues of children in her practice, Nurturing Attachments. Her passion is to help families develop close, satisfying relationships.  A clinical social worker, she has worked over 25 years in foster and adopted children's therapies and placements.  She has also been a therapeutic foster parent.

Deborah is core faculty for the award-winning Post-Graduate Certificate Program in Foster and Adoption Therapy at Portland State University.  She is main faculty in the ATTACh-recognized Post-Graduate Attachment Therapy Certificate Program through Cascadia Training.  She has taught in the Trauma Certificate Program at the University of Washington and was the 2008 Henry W. Maier Practitioner in Residence at the School of Social Work at the University of Washington.

Deborah Gray is a popular presenter due to her practical and positive approaches.  She has keynoted conferences ranging from the Joint Council of International Children's Services to Orphan Conferences.  She continues to work in a clinical practice with parents and children, who help to teach her new approaches and techniques every day.  Visit her website at

Upcoming Dates and Registration

No dates have been scheduled for this course. Please check back soon.

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