Exploring Trauma from a Person-Centered Perspective – Danielle Fitzhenry

Workshop Details This workshop introduces the basics of a trauma informed approach to counselling. It...

Last updated 3 May 2024

Workshop Details

This workshop introduces the basics of a trauma informed approach to counselling. It also explores how trauma can be seen through a person centered lens and what this means for the work we do with clients.

2023 Conference – TRAUMA and the Person-Centred Approach

Fiona’s aim with this series of events is to bring together a range of practitioner voices for lively discussion and exploration of the challenges and benefits of person-centred practice when working with traumatised people.

Trauma & The Person-Centred Approach

The appropriateness and sufficiency of the person-centred approach to working with trauma is a topic of debate and controversy. On one hand, some argue that the approach is not appropriate or sufficient, because it doesn’t specifically address the unique needs and issues that individuals who have experienced trauma may face. These might include chronically intrusive traumatic memories and flashbacks; bodily and emotional reliving of the trauma; troubling somatic symptoms; difficulties with highly dysregulated emotions; experiences of dissociation, including structural dissociation of the self; chronic dysregulation of the nervous system; sleep disturbance and nightmares. Questions arise for some, as to whether the person-centred approach is a holistic enough approach to working with the extensive repercussions of trauma, or whether it works actively enough towards ‘resolution of trauma’.

Conversely, others argue that the person-centred approach is highly effective and uniquely powerful, because it prioritizes safety in relationship – the very thing that trauma undermines. What’s more, it is founded on the principles of unconditional positive regard and empathy for all parts of the person, including traumatized parts who feel the urge to protect by (reflexively or deliberately) disconnecting from relationships with self and others. Importantly, the person-centred approach also promotes self-exploration and autonomy, leading to a reconnection with organismic valuing, which we know tends to be stifled in traumatic childhood relationships, or can be lost through the experiencing of a traumatic event as an adult.

The question of whether the person-centred approach can be helpful in counselling for trauma survivors is an important one that requires further examination from different perspectives, which is the purpose of this series of events.

Fiona has sought out a range of speakers, from well-known writers and trainers in the field, to newer, emerging voices, as well as some practitioners from outside the field of person-centred practice. She would like to extend the invitation to anyone interested in speaking in 2023, so if you would like to speak on a topic related to person-centred practice and trauma, please get in touch with Fiona at therapistfionagregory@protonmail.com.

Course Content

Exploring Trauma from a Person-Centered Perspective - Danielle Fitzhenry


Danielle Fitzhenry

My name is Danielle and I am a trauma informed person centered therapist. This means that during a therapy session I will strive to meet you in a non-judgmental way, while offering you empathy in a genuine manner. I draw from a variety of techniques to tailor therapy sessions to suit your needs. I have an MSc in Counselling Psychology with specific interests in bereavement and trauma. I am also able to provide support using brief solution focused therapy and hypnotherapy. 

I hold a certificate in supervision and offer clinical supervision for the helping professions. For more details please visit the supervision portion of this website. 

I have received training in safeguarding and working with autistic spectrum disorders as well as training in trauma, dissociation and recovery and working with relational trauma. I have had the privilege of working with individuals from various backgrounds through the journey of loss and bereavement, bereavement by suicide, depression, low mood and self-esteem, anxiety, post traumatic stress disorder and sexual abuse.For more information about booking a consultation please use the form on my contact page to get in touch. 

If you have made immediate plans to end your life please contact your GP or go to A&E. You can also contact the following organisations:

Fiona Gregory

Fiona is a UKCP registered person-centred psychotherapist with a special interest in trauma. She works predominantly with clients who are struggling with the complex long-term impact of adverse childhood experiences and abuse, as well as people who have experienced single traumatic events and are experiencing post-traumatic stress.

She holds an MSc in Contemporary Person-Centred Psychotherapy and Applications from Metanoia Institute and is also an EMDR practitioner. She has her own private practice in Surrey, volunteers for Mind as a therapist, and is the creator/facilitator of the Person-Centred Association’s Trauma Special Interest Group.