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From US vs Them to WE

Feature Presentation

9:30am - 11:00am BST [UTC +00:00]

Main Hall

To address intersectionality, Jon and Dan turn to neurobiology as well as the interventions of DDP.

Jon focuses on the fact that we evolved to have two basic relational systems: affiliation and hierarchy. The affiliation system supports our ability to care about others and to form WE relationships. The hierarchy system supports social ranking and biases us towards US/THEM relationships. We can shift back and forth between these two systems, what Jon calls Interstate Travel.

The goal of embracing our differences and forming larger and stronger “We” relationships requires us to manage these potentially competing relational systems. Knowing how and where we hold each other in our brains can help us know how to shift from a hierarchical, power-based state of mind towards an affiliative state of mind. Understanding these dynamics can help us to embrace intersectionality. 

Dan will focus on how therapy, and DDP specifically, functions to help shift relationships towards affiliation, from mutual defensiveness towards mutual trust and caring connections.

DDP processes enable the child to resolve past experiences of relational trauma and to be open to new experiences whereby the “other” is now experienced as a source of safety and self-discovery, not fear and shame.

Through PACE, the traumatized person is able to understand how their group identity has been devalued and discover their worth within whatever race, class, gender, etc. they reside. 

DDP helps us to see how Intersectionality provides opportunities for new learning if we can welcome the experience of differences rather than reacting with defensive vigilance.