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What is TF-CBT Therapy?

TF-CBT is an evidence-based practice that helps children/adolescents (ages 3-18) who have experienced trauma. This treatment approach is designed to help children/adolescents and families manage feelings, talk about the trauma, and develop plans for feeling safe in the future. TF-CBT therapy is used across the country. It has been shown to significantly decrease the short-term and long-term negative effects

of trauma.

Child flying kite | TF-CBT in Madison, WI | TF-CBT for PTSD | TF-CBT therapists | Trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy | trauma therapy | madison, wi 53703 | 53202 Milwaukee | 54311 Green Bay

TF-CBT Therapy
(Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy)

What does TF-CBT Therapy look like?

This therapy model is short-term, usually, 12-16 sessions. The usual schedule includes individual sessions for the child/adolescent and joint sessions with the child/adolescent and caregiver.


Trauma-informed cognitive-behavioral therapy is structured and includes the following components:

Education about trauma and its effects

• Parenting strategies to address common behavior problems

• Work on identifying and managing feelings

• Help on changing the thoughts around the trauma that tend to postpone healing

• Helping the child and family talk about the events (“telling the story”)

• Planning for future safety and success

What is Complex Trauma and PTSD?

“Trauma” is an unexpected or sudden event that creates feelings of extreme fear or

helplessness. Victims of trauma were often in situations where they feared for their

lives or the lives of others. Traumatic events are incidents that cause physical or

emotional harm. Some examples are sexual abuse, physical abuse, domestic

violence, community violence, loss of a loved one, natural disasters, and war.

How do children/adolescents react to trauma?

There are many different ways that young people respond to highly stressful events.

Common reactions can include:

• Difficulty stopping thoughts about the trauma

• Increased fear in both safe and risky situations

Feelings of guilt or shame

• Thoughts about death or dying

• Irritability and problems with anger control

• Efforts to avoid talking about the event or doing things that remind the

a child about the event

• Recalling physical sensations that occurred during trauma

• Difficulty staying still or fidgeting

• Sleeping Difficulty

• Rapid changes in mood

• Difficulty concentrating



• Low self-esteem

Teen walking and listening to music | Child flying kite | TF-CBT in Madison, WI | TF-CBT for PTSD | TF-CBT therapists | Trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy | trauma therapy | madison, wi 53703 | 53202 Milwaukee | 54311 Green Bay

What can my child/adolescent expect from TF-CBT Therapy in Madison, WI?

  • Learning that the trauma was not their fault and that they are not the only

       ones who have survived a similar traumatic event.

  • Identifying feelings and learning how to manage them.

  • Learning how to relax and tolerate trauma reminders.

  • Identifying negative thoughts that cause depression and anxiety.

  • Learning how to replace negative thoughts with more helpful thoughts.

  • Begin learning how to resolve problems

  • Learning safety skills.

An important goal in treatment is to provide the child/adolescent an opportunity

to discuss details about the trauma in a supportive and nurturing environment. In

developing their trauma narrative their brain begins to replace traumatic memories

with more helpful thoughts about the trauma. In time, these powerful traumatic

reminders begin to lose their impact on them and become less frequent.


Isn’t it better just to forget about what happened? Research shows that not

talking about traumatic events can prevent healing. Children/adolescents often

have inaccurate beliefs about the event that cannot be corrected if the topic is


What is My Job in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?


Caregivers are involved in every step of the treatment. You will be asked to help your child practice skills at home and will be the primary support person as your child gets ready to tell his or her story. In fact, research has proven that caregiver involvement in trauma therapy is the single most important factor in the child’s recovery. Therefore, as your child goes through TF-CBT for PTSD, depression, and anxiety, your role of support is even more crucial at home.

Parents playing with children in box | Child flying kite | TF-CBT in Madison, WI | TF-CBT for PTSD | TF-CBT therapists | Trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy | trauma therapy | madison, wi 53703 | 53202 Milwaukee | 54311 Green Bay

Begin TF-CBT Therapy in Madison, WI Today!

When you are ready to start therapy with Golden Vibes Counseling, we are here for you. We offer trauma-focused cognitive behavioral therapy among other treatment modalities. Our therapists all have different viewpoints, but that's why we are able to provide such diverse and effective services. You will be placed with a therapist suited to your needs.  We do understand, getting started with a new therapist can itself be a source of stress and worry, so we strive to simplify this process for you.  Our Madison, WI-based TF-CBT therapists offer therapy anywhere in the state via online therapy in Wisconsin. To get started, just follow these simple steps:

  1. Call our office at 608-571-0558 or e-mail us to make an appointment

  2. Talk with our Client Care Coordinator to find the best TF-CBT therapist for you

  3. Start finding peace and happiness through accepting your thoughts, feelings, and experiences today!

More Mental Health Services at Golden Vibes Counseling Center

At our Madison, WI therapy clinic, we understand that not everyone has the same needs. That's why we offer a wide range of services geared at helping your and your unique needs. In our counseling office, we offer effective online counseling in Wisconsin. We are truly ready to meet you where you are at. Our skilled therapists can help you using a variety of approaches including CBT, EMDR, ACT, and Brainspotting. These methods can help with sexual assault recovery, depression treatmentanxiety therapy, OCD treatment, therapy for children, PTSD treatment and trauma therapycollege students, exposure therapy, ART therapyreproductive or maternal mental health, multicultural counseling, and more. We also specialize in LGBTQAI+ counseling and poly-affirming therapies and can assist with gender-affirming care. If you are ready to begin therapy with a therapist who understands your specific needs, you have come to the right place. We look forward to helping you grow and heal as you begin to empower yourself and move forward. 


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