Understanding Post Induction Therapy
Psychologist Pia Mellody of The Meadows of Wichenburg, a trauma and addiction inpatient treatment facility, first developed Post Induction Therapy (PIT) in the 1970s. PIT, also referred to as the Meadows Model, is a therapeutic modality that was initially developed to treat the effects of childhood trauma and resulting issues of developmental immaturity. After surviving childhood trauma herself, Pia Mellody sought to improve upon the treatments she received when she was younger. Further through her work, “Pia found that she was encountered with an increasing number of patients who identified less than nurturing, abusive family systems in their childhood—leading to adulthood behaviors of codependency. The codependency patterns translated into addictions, mood disorders, and physical illness.” Hence, the PIT model was designed to help patients understand the core issues arising from one’s family of origin dynamics that resulted in symptoms of addiction, mood disorders and relationship struggles. Post Induction Therapy is currently considered an effective psychotherapeutic method of treatment for a variety of mental health conditions and substance use disorder.
Depending on an individual’s nuanced needs, mental health providers may use a variety of methods to facilitate the PIT approach. There are, however, several components that will always be included in Post Induction Therapy. These include the following:
- Rapport building: in order for PIT to yield success, it is imperative to establish a comfortable rapport between therapist and client. Facilitating an emotionally safe environment and fostering a strong therapeutic relationship is essential.
- Incident debriefing: Through as many sessions as needed, clients are asked to retell and reflect upon the incidents of abuse in as much detail as possible. This component is often the most uncomfortable part of PIT, as it can be highly emotional and exceptionally difficult.
- Preparing an address: In order to release the adverse effects that occurred as a result of childhood trauma, clients are advised to compose a letter to those that inflicted the trauma that outlines the personal effects of the incidents and includes one’s thoughts and emotions surrounding the trauma.
- Addressing the perpetrator: The final component of PIT is to go through an exercise that allows the client to address his or her perpetrator. The clinician will place an empty chair in front of the client and ask the client to visualize the perpetrator sitting in the chair. This provides the client with an empowering opportunity to address the perpetrator while being in full control of the situation.
Post Induction Therapy integrates elements of psychotherapeutic approaches such as Person-Centered Humanistic Therapy, Family Systems Theory, Gestalt Therapy, and more. PIT is an eclectic trauma therapy approach that utilizes both individual and group therapy techniques.
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