If you have experienced childhood trauma, you can speak with a Blue Knot Helpline trauma counsellor including for support and applications around national redress

1300 657 380
Monday - Sunday
between 9am - 5pm AEST
or via email helpline@blueknot.org.au


Do you live with disability?  Have you experienced abuse, neglect, violence or exploitation?

For support for Disability Royal Commission or general support contact our National Counselling & Referral Service

1800 421 468
9am - 6pm AEST Mon- Fri
9am - 5pm AEST Sat, Sun & public holidays


Practice Guidelines

Practice Guidelines for Identifying and Treating Complex Trauma-Related Dissociation
Dissociation Guidelines

'Dissociative disorders are so common that it is essential for therapists to have undergone the trainings required for treating them; their prevalence is such that they cannot be left to a few specialists' Schwarz, Corrigan et al., 2017:227.

Complex trauma-related dissociation underlies diverse presentations to health professionals and is often not detected. This means that many people do not receive appropriate responses and care. These Practice Guidelines for Identifying and Treating Complex Trauma-related Dissociation are for clinicians who work in a range of roles, come from different disciplines and have received diverse training but who want to enhance their ability to recognise and work with people experiencing complex trauma-related dissociation.

Part 1 presents the guidelines in two sections. Part A (`Foundational Knowledge’) provides the knowledge base needed for effective therapy for trauma-related dissociation. Awareness of key themes, principles, and concepts on the subject of dissociation assists responsible clinical practice. Yet health professional training does not usually feature information on the nature, process, and symptoms of dissociation. For this reason, this information is included here. It is a necessary prelude to the recommendations for practice which follow. Part B (`Clinical Application’) presents the `translation to practice’ of the material which precedes it.

Part 2 presents the research base which informs the guidelines. Chapter 1 (W'hat is Dissociation and Why do We Need to Know about It?') considers different readings of dissociation, and its different expressions. It introduces the topic of dissociation (and is reproduced from the updated 2019 Practice Guidelines for Clinical Treatment of Complex Trauma). While often associated with disorder, dissociation takes many forms - 'healthy and adaptive, pathological and self-protective' - and 'it makes a vast difference how and in what context dissociation is used'.


You can purchase a hard copy of the guidelines or register to download a copy.

                               PURCHASE A HARD COPY               REGISTER AND DOWNLOAD 


Disclaimer - Blue Knot Foundation makes every effort to provide readers of its website and newsletters with information which is accurate and helpful. It is not however a substitute for counselling or professional advice. While all attempts have been made to verify all information provided, Blue Knot Foundation cannot guarantee and does not assume any responsibility for currency, errors, omissions or contrary interpretation of the information provided.


Health Direct


Head to Health


“Blue Knot Foundation has a key role to play in the building of community capacity in care provision to those who have experienced childhood abuse and trauma in any environment.”

NIALL MULLIGAN Manager, Lifeline Northern Rivers

“I think Blue Knot Foundation is a fantastic support organisation for people who have experienced childhood trauma/abuse, for their families/close friends and for professionals who would like to learn how to more effectively work with these people.”

Psychologist Melbourne

“It's such a beautiful thing that you are doing. Helping people to get through this.”


“It was only last September when I discovered the Blue Knot Foundation website and I will never forget the feeling of support and empathy that I received when I finally made the first phone call to Blue Knot Helpline, which was also the first time I had ever spoken about my abuse.”


"At last there is some sound education and empathetic support for individuals and partners impacted by such gross boundary violations.”


Contact Us

Phone: 02 8920 3611
PO Box 597 Milsons Point NSW 1565
Hours: Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm AEST

Blue Knot Helpline
Phone: 1300 657 380
Email: helpline@blueknot.org.au 
Hours: Mon-Sun, 9am-5pm AEST

For media comment, please contact:
Dr Cathy Kezelman
+61 425 812 197
+61 2 8920 3611
or ckezelman@blueknot.org.au

For media enquiries, please contact: 
Jo Scard
+61 457 725 953 
or jo@fiftyacres.com