Psychedelic Somatic Trauma Work
"We are leaving the paradigm of symptom suppression and management and focusing on resolving root causes with psychedelic therapy. Your ability to feel and engage these symptoms is integral to healing them." www.psychedlicsomatic.org
What is Psychedelic Somatic Interactional Psychotherapy*?
Psychedelic Somatic Interactional Psychotherapy* (PSIP) is a medicine assisted, somatic modality that helps transform traumas held in the subconscious layers of the nervous system. The core programs that drive maladaptive behaviors and limit our capacities for joy, love, pleasure and intimacy can be profoundly processed through this work.
Unlike other medicine assisted paths (e.g. the sitter model), PSIP is very relational, dynamic and embodied. You won't be journeying through the cosmos on a solo journey. You will have somebody right there with you to help you stay in your body as you profoundly meet challenging memories, feelings and defense patterns with healing presence.
The PSIP model centers the client's autonomic nervous system's ability to integrate old traumatic material stored in the body. The medicine simply acts as an amplifier of one's innate healing capacities.
(*Please note that while this method uses the term psychotherapy, I do not claim to be a psychotherapist.)
Address Core Attachment Wounds
Attachment theory acknowledges that our childhood caregivers' presence (or lack thereof) shaped the instincts that our adult relationships are built upon. In an ideal world, we all would have been given a safe, nurturing and supportive environment that lovingly honored our nature, pleasure, creativity, agency, gender, bodies, boundaries, desires and needs. Many of us were not gifted with this reality,
In the absence of the quality of love we longed for, we developed coping mechanisms: self-abandonment, avoiding intimacy out of fear of being hurt, compulsively reaching outside of ourselves and unconsciously recreating our core attachment wounds in our adult relationships.
The PSIP model can bring awareness to your unconscious attachment material and offers beautiful opportunities to rewire your core relational programming. More pleasure, presence and potency naturally arise within our intimate relationships with self and others when greater degrees of integration is cultivated in this work.
"I was always aware of Lorina’s presence, sitting across from me like a lighthouse, keeping me anchored to this dimension. It was incredible to be able to give myself so completely to such highly charged memories, without being swept away by them. Suffice it to say, it was a truly powerful experience, which led to some incredible results in my life. To say I am grateful to have had the opportunity to do this powerful work with Lorina is an understatement. " ~ Z Craig (read more)
The PSIP model can be used with a wide variety of medicines. In fact, it is an evolution of a method called Trauma Dynamics that existed long before medicine was introduced. The inclusion of medicine happened when Saj Razvi, the Director of Education of PSI, was invited to the MAPS clinical research team and the efficacy of medicine assisted therapy became undeniably apparent.
Cannabis was woven in when clients and practitioners of Trauma Dynamics reported that their ability to process traumatic material was surprisingly amplified when they used it. The combination of modality and marijuana proved impressively effective for clearing out dissociation. Working with cannabis prepares one for greater degrees of success with more classic psychedelics like psilocybin. In fact, when PSI holds retreats in locations where psilocybin is legal they will use cannabis for 3 days prior to working with mushrooms.
Cannabis is legally available in all the contexts (to varying degrees) that I offer PSIP sessions. This has some obvious benefits in terms of accessibility, liability and safety. In the way I work, clients source their own medicine while I provide the skill of facilitation.
What Does a Session Look Like?
This video is produced by the Psychedelic Somatic Institute. It shows a cannabis assisted PSIP session to help address attachment trauma while also giving some theoretical context. Here's a link to a shorter (8 mins) video that gives a taste of the work without the theory.
Please note that every session and person's healing process is unique and no two sessions are alike. That said, you can expect encounters with highly charged unprocessed sensations, emotions, body impulses, belief systems and memories. This is all explored in a container of care, connection and awareness.
One significant goal of this work is to complete incomplete self-protective strategies like fight, flight and freeze. When we give space for our bodies to release those survival strategies somatically we can let go of those outdated defense mechanisms and intimately engage life and others from a more empowered, connected and heart open space.
I live in Maui, HI and Oakland, CA where in-person intensives can be arranged. (You can learn more about PSIP intensives here.) I also offer virtual sessions where people can do this work in the comfort of their own home.
Please know that this work is potent medicine. Preparation and integration are essential for this work to have palpable, lasting and life enhancing benefits. Certain levels of stability, resources and skill development need to be in place for this work to be more fruitful than destabilizing. As such, I offer this work on a case by case basis.
PSIP is one tool of many in my possession. I support people with a wide range of healing modalities that I have acquired over two decades as a professional healing arts practitioner.
If you are interested in receiving this work, I suggest contacting me to schedule a 30 min complimentary discovery call.