For those who struggle with early attachment injuries, even the presumably safe presence of the therapist can often evoke feelings of desperation, fear, and threat. Diane Poole Heller, developer of the Dynamic Attachment Re-patterning Experience model, is an expert at creating a sense of safety with even the most troubled clients.

In this brief video clip, Diane shows us how she worked with a client who found the therapy relationship so threatening that he took off his glasses when he entered her office to keep her face an indistinct blur. Here, she vividly demonstrates the vocal tone and facial expression she used to “presence secure attachment” in the therapy room with him.

Rich Simon

Richard Simon, PhD, founded Psychotherapy Networker and served as the editor for more than 40 years. He received every major magazine industry honor, including the National Magazine Award. Rich passed away November 2020, and we honor his memory and contributions to the field every day. 

Diane Poole Heller

At a time when psychotherapists trained primarily in the “talking cure” are increasingly recognizing the need to “read” clients’ nonverbal communications, particularly those buried in early attachment issues, Diane Poole Heller has been a leader in addressing the unconscious issues that clients are often unable to express. With an approach grounded in Attachment Theory, Peter Levine’s Somatic Experiencing method of trauma resolution, and spiritual healing techniques, she’s traveled around the world teaching integrative mind-body methods that deepen the resonance of the therapist–client bond.