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A very special weekend for beginning the journey beyond survival into aliveness!!
We will first assist you in creating safety for yourself by establishing boundaries and guidelines for communication and interaction on the weekend.
Then we will work together to assist you in releasing memories and emotions connected to your experience of sexual abuse at whatever level you are ready to do this work.
Finally, on Sunday of the weekend, we will help you integrate what you have experienced and learned, and we will share with you skills to assist you in continuing your healing process.
With your permission, we will send information to your therapist before the weekend and after, to assist in your therapy process. If you do not have a therapist, there will be one on staff on the weekend, and there are others familiar with our work that we can refer you to for integration and therapy after the weekend.
This weekend is led by Patricia Clason, certified instructor for Taking It Lightly, an emotional release intensive weekend, and a teaching and assisting staff who are all survivors of sexual abuse. The entire staff is made up of individuals who actively pursue their own healing process and are willing to share their experiences with you.
Participation is limited to 10 students, so preregistration is required.*
The weekend begins Friday night at 7:00 pm—please arrive at 6:45 pm to register. Saturday and Sunday morning we will begin at 9:00 am. Ending times each day will be determined by the needs of the group. You will go home each evening. If you are from outside the Milwaukee area, we will assist you in finding lodging. A graduation ceremony, open to your family and friends, will be held Sunday at 6:00 pm.
Please plan to "brown bag" your lunches for Saturday and Sunday and dinner on Saturday. Refrigerator space is available, although limited, so we recommend you bring a small cooler for your food. There is a microwave, but no stove. Coffee and tea will be provided. Please bring a blanket, pillow and your favorite cuddly friend (stuffed animal).
Renewal is an adaptation of Taking It Lightly, a weekend intensive for emotional release work, which has over 4,000 graduates nationwide. We found that over 50% of the students in Taking It Lightly had issues related to sexual abuse, even though the presenting issues were often dysfunctional relationships and generalized dissatisfaction in life. The underlying issues related to the abuse needed specialized attention, so we referred our graduates to therapists who worked in that field.
The graduates wanted a weekend similar to Taking It Lightly so they could do the emotional release work directly related to the sexual abuse - and they indicated they would feel safest doing this in a group focused on that area. So Renewal was created.
Renewal: A Weekend for Sexual Abuse Survivors is an intensive personal growth experience. During the weekend, individual participants access and release repressed feelings with the help and support of the instructors, the team of assistants, and the other group members. They then consolidate their decisions to be more alive by designing and committing to specific action.
Underlying the experience are two fundamental principles: 1) full and free expression of emotion as communication of one's aliveness; and 2) complete personal responsibility for one's own life. Emotional expression is consistently linked to integrity and accountability.
The change-producing process itself includes elements of psychodrama. Much like redecision therapy, it helps the student identify and then move through fears to create richer, more comprehensive self-expression. Several key elements ensure that the process succeeds: a) highly trained (and remarkably skilled) instructors who help students safely experience and then accept—rather than reject—split-off feelings; b) a well-designed group structure that emphasizes personal choice (including how much to change) and emotional safety; and c) active assistance of the facilitator team who demonstrate and enhance an atmosphere of love, safety and support. The process is extended through exercises that focus on ongoing change. Students are encouraged to follow up after the completion of the weekend by using the support potential in fellow group members and other community resources. Students in therapy are encouraged to continue their work with their therapist. Continuing group follow-up opportunities are also offered directly to the graduates, through the Center.
The Renewal: A Weekend for Sexual Abuse Survivors experience is highly effective in speeding up therapeutic changes chosen by students for their lives. It enhances one-on-one therapy, creates greater personal integration and self-acceptance, frees awareness and expression of emotions, improves taking responsibility for one's own growth, and clarifies issues that remain unresolved.
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