Martha Portney, LPC
Somatic Experiencing Practitioner,
BASE Certification
Registered Play Therapist
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  • When appropriate, and according to my clinical judgment, I will use Somatic Experiencing (SE) in our work together.  I am a SC Licensed Professional Counselor, Certified Somatic Experiencing Practitioner, and a Certified BASE Practitioner (Bodywork and Somatic Education for Trauma Therapists).  SE is a body-oriented process and a naturalistic approach to the resolution and healing of trauma in the body developed by Dr. Peter Levine, and is supported by research. It is based upon the observation that wild prey animals, though threatened routinely, are rarely traumatized. Animals in the wild utilize innate mechanisms to regulate and discharge the high levels of energy arousal associated with defensive survival behaviors. These mechanisms provide animals with a built-in “immunity’’ to trauma that enables them to return to normal in the aftermath of highly "charged" life-threatening experiences.​

  • SE employs awareness of body sensation and tracking of sensations to help people "renegotiate" and heal rather than re-live or re-enact trauma.

  • SE's guidance of the bodily "felt sense" allows the highly aroused survival energies to be safely experienced and gradually discharged by the body.

  • SE may employ therapeutic touch in support of the nervous system's renegotiation process.

  • SE “titrates” experiences (breaks down into small, incremental steps), rather than evoking catharsis - which can overwhelm the regulatory mechanisms of the body.

  • SE can result in a number of benefits to you, such as relief of traumatic stress symptoms, increased resiliency, capacity, and resourcefulness as well as feelings of joy, happiness or love.

For more information on Somatic Experiencing, click here