Robin Day 

Licensed Professional Counselor

Developmental Needs Meeting Strategy (DNMS) - Healing Childhood Wounds

Developmental Needs Meeting Strategy (DNMS) was developed to help clients recover from childhood wounds and traumas. Many clients’ present-day problems originated with unmet childhood needs and traumas. DNMS has been found helpful for treating depression, anxiety, panic disorder, social phobias, substance abuse, complex post-traumatic stress disorder, relationship problems, obsessions/compulsions, eating disorders, dissociative disorders, borderline personality disorder, sexual addiction, self-injurious behavior and complicated grief.

In DNMS I use special guided meditations to help clients develop and connect to three Resource parts of self: a Spiritual Core Self (or Core Self), a Nurturing Adult Self, and a Protective Adult Self. These Resources keep clients “grounded” in the safe present while they explore and reprocess difficult memories.

Throughout many of the DNMS protocols I communicate directly with individual wounded parts of self and facilitate communication between those parts and the Resources. Because this is not the way people usually talk to each other, it can seem odd at first, but clients get used to it when they see how effective it is.

Overall, DNMS is a safer approach to childhood memory resolution than many other forms of therapy. Clients have less risk of increased symptoms due to exploration of memories. 

DNMS can be a long-term therapy. For clients with severe symptoms and/or childhood physical and sexual abuse, even the first step in treatment—development of the three Resources—can take months. In addition, many clients have serious and unconscious concerns about change, which must be addressed before and during DNMS. Many of my clients who participate in DNMS benefit from attending DBT Skills Group for a limited time in the beginning of treatment. The DBT Skills help clients manage symptoms while waiting for the DNMS protocols to take effect. Click here for information on my DBT Skills groups.

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