Dialectical Behavior Therapy

Marsha Linehan (1991) pioneered this treatment, based on the idea that psychosocial treatment of those with Borderline Personality Disorder was as important in controlling the condition as traditional counseling and pharmacotherapy were. In conjunction with this belief was a hierarchical structure of treatment goals. Paramount among these was reducing parasuicidal (self-injuring) and life-threatening behaviors. Next came reducing behaviors that interfered the therapy/treatment process, and finally reducing behaviors that reduced the client's quality of life. Various studies have shown DBT to be effective in treating a variety of symptoms. The following link is a summary of studies done to date:

Summary Of Data

The Theory

Basically, DBT maintains that some people, due to invalidating environments during upbringing and due to biological factors as yet unknown, react abnormally to emotional stimulation. Their level of arousal goes up much more quickly, peaks at a higher level, and takes more time to return to baseline. This explains why people suffering from symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder are known for crisis-strewn lives and extreme emotional lability (emotions that shift rapidly). Because of their past invalidation, they don't have any methods for coping with these sudden, intense surges of emotion. DBT is a method for teaching skills that will help in this task.

Employment Opportunities

Clinician - Posted 9/25/13

As The Olympia Center for DBT continues to grow, so does our wait list. Oly DBT is a private practice dedicated to providing adherent Dialectical Behavior Therapy to adults and adolescents. We are currently seeking an additional clinician to join our practice. We are located near downtown Olympia, WA. Participation and a strong commitment to work with our weekly DBT consultation team are expected. Prior training and experience in DBT is helpful, however, LMHCs (WA state Licensed Mental Health Counselor) with training and experience in behavioral and/or cognitive-behavioral therapies interested in working within a DBT model are also encouraged to apply. Please send a letter of interest, resume and references to Beth Rogers via email (olydbt@gmail.com), or regular mail to Kim Leslie, Office Manager, Olympia DBT, 924 7th Ave SE, Olympia, WA 98501.

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