T2T incorporates two distinct but vitally important disciplines – brain biology and attachment theory.
With a more complete understanding of brain biology and the importance of attachment is it possible to help parents and other care-providers impact the basic architecture of the brain? Could the result be a more adaptive and resilient child, adolescent and future adult?
T2T believes the answers are a resounding yes! T2T acknowledges the ground breaking research of Dr. Vincent Felitti and Kaiser Permanente in Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE’s). This research has changed the health care philosophy from merely prolonging life to a deeper understanding that the mind/body connection is fundamental to the potential of promoting overall long-term health and wellness.
The ACE’s research opened the door but a new question has emerged – can we do anything to prevent ACE’s and if not, what must be done to combat their devastating effects?
Certified Prevention Specialist, Debby Jones, was asking this very question when she was introduced to the work of Ann Corwin, Ph.D., M Ed. Corwin was speaking at a Parent Educators Conference on the importance of attachment for young children. Out of frustration of this unanswered question came the desire for renewed hope and the collaboration began between Debby Jones and Ann Corwin. Youth were falling through the cracks unintentionally as prevention efforts focused on middle and high school youth who at the same time were shouting out for help to understand their powerful feelings. Their cries for help were answered with “Just say No” campaigns and role playing skits practicing refusal skills. For a few, those interventions helped but for others the numbing effect of alcohol, other drugs and or sex proved more powerful.
Dr. Corwin’s explanation of the Attachment Rule, (touch, talk and eye contact) brought a biological framework and the ACE’s research helped create an understanding of trauma and the harmful effects of stress on the brain and body. We had the beginnings of a powerful “why” behind negative health outcomes but needed an even greater “how” in order to do something about it.
We believe the T2T project is a step to answering “how”. T2T reinforces the power of the Attachment Rule through a resiliency lens. With it comes the potential to help build a stronger brain architecture that can reinforce a more ACE resilient generation.
Our goal is to promote:
Emotional regulation – ability to be in charge of our emotions enough to see alternative solutions.
Impulse control – the ability to stop and choose whether to act on the desire to take action.
Causal Analysis – the ability to analyze a problem and correctly decide what its true cause is.
Self-Efficacy – the feeling of being effective and making a difference in the world and the belief that what we do matters.
Empathy – the ability to understand the feelings and needs of another person.
Increased knowledge and understanding of the Attachment Rule to biologically reinforce the above listed skill set
Children and adults learn together the 3-step T2T model of:
Matching the behavior with the underlying feeling
Determining if the behavior results in a positive outcome and if not helping them learn to do something different when that feeling comes again.
The 3-Step T2T model is learned through games, role playing and reinforced through the Attachment Rule (touch, talk and eye contact when an appropriate behavior is being displayed). Parents and or care providers participate in a one time, 2-hour T2T Parent Boot Camp. Specific follow-up check in calls and emails are included through a 6 month period where the T2T principles are encouraged, reinforced and continued education occurs.
T2T is unique in that it educates adults and children at the same time. In children, neuro pathways are connected and strengthened. In adults the plasticity of the brain is exercised and new and more effective coping strategies are learned and developed.
We believe that with the knowledge of brain biology and the power and magic of attachment we can reinforce and build a stronger and more ACE resilient brain and body.
Debby Jones, CPS
Ann Corwin, Ph.D., M. Ed.