Relational Depth and Trauma: A Panel Discussion with Mick Cooper

The experience of profoundly stressful, frightening, or distressing events can leave lasting scars. Traumatic scars...

Last updated 20 May 2024

The experience of profoundly stressful, frightening, or distressing events can leave lasting scars. Traumatic scars can also be passed down through generations, as children internalise the threats and terrors that their predecessors faced. This panel discussion will explore the role that relational depth can play in helping clients address such trauma. Creating a deep bond with clients has the potential to forge a safety and a trust that may allow clients to go into their darkest, most terrifying places. But what is it, specifically, that relational depth can do, and is it enough? Do we need more than a deep connectedness to help facilitate trauma work with our clients?

Attendance at this panel (CPD Certificated) will be on a donation-only basis, with all funds going towards a film project by Mick Cooper’s daughter, Maya. Maya is preparing to make a short film about her own great-great grandfather, Moishe, who was kidnapped as a young Jewish boy from his home in Ukraine, tortured to convert to Christianity, and then forced to serve in the Russian army for 25 years. Maya’s film is about Moishe’s trauma, and the courage and relationship that helped him to stay true to his faith. Moishe return to the bosom of his family but, as Mick Cooper (his great grandson) will discuss, the legacy of his trauma is something that has cast a long shadow over subsequent generations.

Members of this panel will discuss the relationship between trauma work and relational depth from a range of different perspectives. Panellists include Mick Cooper, co-author of Working at relational depth in counselling and psychotherapy (co-authored with Dave Mearns, Sage, 2017). Following brief statements by each panel member, there will be discussion amongst the panel. We will then have a short break, followed by contributions and Q&A with all participants.

Course Content

Relational Depth and Trauma: A Panel Discussion with Mick Cooper


Dr. Kalanit Ben-Ari

Kalanit Ben-Ari, Ph.D. is a senior psychologist, psychotherapist, and author with over 20 years of experience working with couples, individuals, and parents. With a private clinic in Hampstead, London, she is an international speaker, trainer, and supervisor of therapists. Kalanit is a member of the Faculty at the Imago International Training Institute and served as the Chair of Imago UK from 2013 to 2023. Dr. Ben-Ari’s expertise is well-recognised; she has trained thousands of therapists worldwide and is frequently featured in professional journals and the media.

Workshop for couples: Getting The Love You Want, 25th-26th February 2023, London. Limited number of participants. Sign up here

Clinical Imago Relationship Therapy training (Module 1, for therapists), 6th - 9th March 2023, London. Info- https://www.kalanitbenari.com/training-for-therapists A link for the future trainings | https://www.kalanitbenari.com/training-for-therapists Parenting platformGet The VillageParenting community empowered by experts.
Helen Cruthers

Helen Cruthers is Clinical Lead (Children and Families) with Beacon House Therapeutic Services and Trauma Team. Helen is a trainer, and an Integrative Arts Psychotherapist with over 30 years’ experience of working with children, young people, adults, and families. She specialises in therapeutic parenting work where there is a history of trauma, struggle, and relational challenges. Her work is informed by the fields of neuroscience, neurodiversity, attachment, sensory processing, systemic thinking, positive psychology, mental health, epigenetics, child development, and compassion-focused therapy. Helen’s interest is in the connective threads between our own traumas (as therapists), those of our clients, and our ability to work with relational depth.

Kate Williams

Kate Williams has been in therapeutic practice since 2009 with a background in counselling in further education. She currently runs a busy private practice, works with NHS clients and enjoys running workshops for onlinevents and staff wellbeing workshops for NHS Hull & Humberside.

Kate is centre manager for the Bedfordshire Centre for Therapeutic Studies where she teaches on the CPCAB L5 in Somatic Trauma Therapy course & L2 Award in Breathwork Coaching as well as the Level 4 in Therapeutic Counselling.

Kate has a passion for bringing the body into her practice supporting clients to release the trauma that is held within their bodies. Kate is know for her relaxed teaching style, experiential somatic practices and skill of bringing theory to life and making it applicable.

Maya Katherine Cooper

Maya has been working in the film industry since 2016. She has written and directed previous short films with her most recent project being a web series; ‘Controversy’, which was produced with support from the National Youth Theatre. Maya has a very personal connection to the story, Moishe Gralnick is her great-great grandfather, his perseverance in keeping his faith has led to her continuing Jewish Identity. She wants to tell her family’s story.

Mick Cooper

Mick Cooper is an internationally recognised author, trainer, and consultant in the field of humanistic, existential, and pluralistic therapies. He is a Chartered Psychologist, and Professor of Counselling Psychology at the University of Roehampton.

Mick has facilitated workshops and lectures around the world, including New Zealand, Lithuania, and Florida.

Mick’s books include Existential Therapies (Sage, 2017), Working at Relational Depth in Counselling and Psychotherapy (Sage, 2018), and The Handbook of Person-Centred Psychotherapy and Counselling (Palgrave, 2013).

His latest work is Integrating Counselling and Psychotherapy: Directionality, Synergy, and Social Change (Sage, 2019).

Mick’s principal areas of research have been in shared decision-making/personalising therapy, and counselling for young people in schools.

In 2014, Mick received the Carmi Harari Mid-Career Award from Division 32 of the American Psychological Association. He is a Fellow of the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy and the Academy of Social Sciences.