Treat Attachment

10 hours of online clinical course material to learn the protocol
for attachment treatment that is eligible for 8 CE Credits*. Taught
by award-winning author and psychologist Dr. Daniel P. Brown.

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Who is this course for?

This course was created for psychologists, psychoanalysts, marriage counselors, family therapists, occupational therapists, teachers, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurses, pediatricians and social workers.

What will you learn?

The impact of attachment disturbances is felt in all parts of society. Learn a proven method for helping your patients repair their disturbances with expert lectures and experiential exercises for you and your clients.

Clinical Training – Attachment Level 1

How to Treat Attachment


1. The background

Over 32% of the North American & European population grapple with three main forms of attachment disturbance: preoccupied, dismissing and disorganized.

Attachment disturbances are the main source of many mental health issues faced by adults. Intergenerational in nature, they are often shared across several generations of families. This section provides clinicians with an in-depth understanding of the condition: how it can manifest over an adult life cycle, and the different treatment approaches that are commonly used.


2. The approach

The Three Pillars represent the core of Dr. Brown’s approach to attachment treatment:

The Three Pillar Approach:
1. The Ideal Parent Figure protocol (IPF)
2. Developing a range of metacognitive skills
3. Fostering collaborative nonverbal and verbal behavior

Learn a step-by-step introduction to how the Three Pillar Approach is used to treat attachment disturbances. Integrating research and comprehensive clinical expertise, it equips clinicians with the necessary skills to foster new, healthy and positive internal working models for attachment.


3. Applying the treatment

Learn how the Three Pillar Approach is used to treat each specific type of attachment disturbance with experiential exercises that you can use with your patients.

The final section examines a valuable tool known as the Adult Attachment Interview (AAI), which is the gold standard used to thoroughly assess and classify different forms of attachment. We shift focus to helping your patients expand on their new base of secure attachment to develop secure intimacy and self pathology*.

Earn 8 CE credits with this clinical course

Learning Objectives

  • Describe how the attachment bonds play an influence on adult life.
  • Identify the two best assessment tools to identify attachment disturbance in the patient and discuss accurate assessment of comorbidity of attachment disturbance.
  • Define the four types of attachment disturbance with their clinical manifestations and the attachment bond over the lifecycle.
  • Demonstrate & utilize the experience of the Ideal Parent Figures protocol & case conceptualization for treating Preoccupied, Dismissing and Disorganized Attachment in patients & the protocol to help in Enhancing Secure Intimacy in patients.
  • Explain the role of Metacognition in treating attachment disturbance and be able to describe the four generations of metacognitive skills.
  • Apply collaborative behaviour in your treatments to help patients with collaborative dialogue.
  • Discuss how to utilize the three pillars method in clinical practice with practical examples of being able to prepare treatments plans and explanation to your patients how this applies.
  • Identify how to apply the three pillars method in combination with different types of therapy.

Attachment Course Overview

12 mins. Module 1: Patterns of Relational Disturbance


Lecture: 12 Minutes

We first explore the four main prototypes of attachment in both children and adults: secure attachment, avoidant (or dismissing) attachment, resistant to ambivalent attachment in children and anxious-preoccupied attachment in adults, and finally, disorganized attachment.

37 mins. Module 2: Seminal Ideas


Lecture: 37 Minutes

A comprehensive outlook on having seminal ideas in the history of the attachment field, covering some of the main developments in the history of ideas in the attachment field.

13 mins. Module 3: Assessment


Lecture: 13 Minutes

This section presents the ways clinicians can best assess attachment status in their adult patients.

7 mins. Module 4: Clinical Manifestations


Lecture: 7 Minutes

A lecture on the clinical manifestations of attachment behavior in adults, with consideration to each of the four main prototypes of attachment.

14 mins. Module 5: Attachment & Adult Psychopathology


Lecture: 14 Minutes

This section considers a number of studies that have looked at early attachment and the impact it has on the development of psychopathology in adults. Usually these studies administer the AAI to clinical populations adult attachment inventory and then see whether their trends in the AAI are associated with certain types of psychopathology.

12 mins. Module 6: Attachment over the Life-Cycle


Lecture: 12 Minutes

The development of the attachment bond over the course of the life cycle. The first phase is called the pre-attachment phase, starting from birth to the first three months of life.

33 mins. Module 7: Review of Attachment Treatments


Lecture: 33 Minutes

The different treatment approaches and strategies that have been used to treat attachment disorders in adults, with an emphasis of both western approaches and Indo-Tibetan tradition of Buddhism which Daniel P. Brown has studied for over 40 years.

12 mins. Module 8: Introduction to the Three Pillars Approach


Lecture: 12 Minutes

An induction to our three pillar approach to treatment: the Ideal Parent Figure Protocol, Fostering Collaborative Behavior and Metacognition.

41 mins. Module 9: Pillar One – Ideal Parent Figure Protocol


Lecture: 41 Minutes

A comprehensive lecture on the four approaches that we developed to using ideal parent figure imagery. Over the course of the treatment we are going to use all four of these approaches.

14 mins. Module 10: Pillar Two – Fostering Collaborative Behaviour


Lecture: 14 Minutes

This section covers the development of collaborative behaviour between patient and therapist.

37 mins. Module 11: Pillar Three – Metacognition


Lecture: 37 Minutes

Here we’ll talk about the development of a range of metacognitive skills important in the treatment of patients with attachment disorders. There are four generations of development of metacognitive skills.

27 mins. Module 12: Treatment of Dismissing Attachment


Lecture: 27 Minutes

In this section you will learn the specific treatment protocol for treating dismissing attachment.

26 mins. Module 13: Treatment of Preoccupied Attachment


Lecture: 26 Minutes

The next specific treatment protocol pertains to anxious-preoccupied attachment. The main etiological factor in the development of preoccupied attachment is what Mary Main calls over-involvement in the parent’s state-of-mind.

33 mins. Module 14: Treatment of Disorganised Attachment


Lecture: 33 Minutes

In this section you will learn the specific treatment protocol for treating disorganized attachment.

11 mins. Module 15: Evaluation of Treatment Outcomes


Lecture: 11 Minutes

You’ll learn how to evaluate treatment progress and outcome of treatment with the three pillars approach. The main criteria for outcome is the achievement of secure attachment.

20 mins. Module 16: AAI Interview


Lecture: 20 Minutes

The adult attachment inventory also known as the AAI is the gold standard in the assessment of attachment.

33 mins. Module 17: Secure Intimacy in Patients


Lecture: 33 Minutes

This section is on secure intimacy or development of secure intimacy and the representations for support secure intimacy. The main treatment of the three pillars of attachment treatment is the introduction and internalization of ideal parent figures, continued with the open expression of intimate behaviors in the coupleship.

BONUS Module 18: Self Pathology in Patients*


Lecture: 31 Minutes

The final module focuses on the three major stages of the developmental line of self development.  You’ll learn the methods we use to repair the line of self-development in three respects: self-definition, self-agency and self-esteem.

BONUS Reference Material* & Workbook

Over 20 hours reference material from the beginnings of attachment to today, complete workbook with transcripts and slides & Q&A with Psychology Expert.

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Daniel P. Brown, PhD

Learn with a top transformational teacher

Through his work at Harvard Medical School and global retreats, Dr. Brown has taught over 10,000 students with a focus on psychology and meditation.

Winner of the 1999 Guttmacher Award: from the American Psychiatric Association and the American Academy of Psychiatry & Law.

Harvard Medical School: Associate Clinical Professor of Psychology at Harvard Medical School and has served on the faculty for over 38 years.

Award-Winning Author: of 22 books including Attachment Disturbances in Adults, which was the recipient of the 2018 ISST-D Pierre Janet Writing Award.

With contributions from the faculty

Nigel Denning

Clinical Psychologist

• Former board member of the College of Counseling Psychologists, a member group of the Australian Psychological Association
‍• Registered supervisor for International Association of Applied Neuropsychotherapy
• Vice President of In Good Faith Foundation

David S. Elliott, Ph.D.

Clinical Psychologist

• Co-Author of “Attachment Disturbance in Adults”
• Faculty and Advisory Board Chair of the Int. School for Psychotherapy, Counseling, and Group Leadership in Saint Petersburg, Russia
• Former President of the Rhode Island Psychological Association Association

Specialize in Treating Attachment Disturbances

We train mental health professionals to work effectively with patients, to help them learn secure attachment and change behavioral patterns that are passed onto the next generation.

  • Award-Winning Treatment System with expert lectures and experiential exercises for clinicians and their clients.
  • A groundbreaking approach to treat attachment disorders including Q&A with a psychology expert that dives deeper into common questions about the practice.
  • Earn 8 CE* credits and receive your certificate immediately after the post-test. To view more information on CE Credits click here.
  • Access BONUS MATERIAL* that includes over 20 hours of comprehensive reference material plus a complete 200 page workbook with transcripts and slides.

Enroll Today

Choose a course to expand your knowledge

Clinical: Complicated Grief Treatment

Faculty: Daniel P. Brown, PhD

Course Includes:

  • Guided Video Lectures

  • Clinical Exercises

  • 1 Workbook

$397 ($799)


Clinical: Attachment Treatment

Faculty: Daniel P. Brown, PhD

Course Includes

  • 10 Hours of Lecture (8 CE Credits*)

  • Clinical Exercises

  • 1 Workbook (200 Pages)

Normally ($799)

Enroll Today

Clinical: Complex Trauma Treatment

Faculty: Daniel P. Brown, PhD

Course Includes

  • Guided Video Lectures

  • Clinical Exercises

  • 1 Workbook

$397 ($799)


Our treatment method has been featured in

What expert psychologists are saying about our book’s treatment

Diana Fosha, PhD

Author of “The Transforming Power of Affect” and Director of the AEDP Institute

Richly comprehensive, precise, and wise, it is honed by real clinical experience, with step-by-step treatment protocols tailored to each attachment classification. This book should be required reading for all graduate students in clinical programs, be they clinical psychology, psychiatry, counseling, or social work.

Onno van der Hart, PhD

Emeritus Professor of Psychopathology of Chronic Traumatization, Utrecht University

…An unequalled account of how far the attachment field has evolved since Bowlby’s groundbreaking studies of attachment bonds. It presents an outstanding, encyclopedic, and integrative overview of theoretical understanding, assessment, and treatment. All this leads to a highly inspirational and effective treatment model, consisting of three “pillars”.

Kathy Steele, MN, CS

Clinical Director, Metropolitan Counseling Services. Author of “Coping with Trauma-Related Dissociation”

Mental health professionals across disciplines will delight in the rich depth and breadth of this essential book, which seamlessly interweaves research, theory and treatment. Brown, Elliott and colleagues have written a tour de force that is surely destined to become an instant classic.

Dante Cicchetti, PhD

McKnight Presidential Chair, William Harris Professor of Child Development & Psychiatry

Rarely does a scholarly work contribute to the understanding of the processes underlying attachment and its dysfunction while simultaneously providing a clearly delineated prescription for treatment. Practitioners will profit from the detailed clinical vignettes and researchers will gain many ideas warranting empirical investigation.

Your questions answered

Who should take this course?

This course is aimed at psychologists, psychoanalysts, marriage counselors and family therapists, occupational therapists, teachers/educators, psychiatrists and psychiatric nurses, pediatricians and social workers. The course is suitable across Beginning Level, Intermediate Level, and Advanced Level. All levels will be taught an understanding of how to start identifying and treating attachment disturbances. A full Q&A session is provided for those who wish to dive deeper into the practice.

What does the * after certain modules mean?

*Not all modules are eligible for CE Credits. Specifically, the module on Self Development as well as the bonus reference material is not eligible for CE Credits in the USA.

How long does it take to complete the training?

You’ll have access to over 10 hours of continued education eligible for 8 CE Credits, divided into 17 teaching modules plus bonus material (that isn’t eligible for CE credits). The curriculum is adapted to cater to the learning pace of every clinician, and we offer 1-year access to the training from the moment of purchase.  Access to the training is entirely digital so that you can attend the training via phone, tablet or computer.

How do I access the course after purchasing it?

You will receive an email with all relevant login information needed to sign into our online learning portal.

Will I need follow up supervision or a master class to dive deeper?

In order to master the skills needed to shift the paradigm of attachment disturbances towards healthy models that dramatically improve the quality of relationships, family environments and their overall mental state of your patients, you may require follow-up supervision with a trained expert and/or a masterclass with a case example.

Are the course sessions live or pre-recorded?

The course videos are pre-recorded and there is a full reference inventory for your reference.

How do I obtain my 8 CE credits for US & Canadian clients?

You will earn approximately one CE credit for each contact hour of the course. Once you have taken the course, if you do not pass the post test by 75% or better, you can retake the test. After you pass the exam, you will be able to print out a certificate of completion as evidence that you completed the course. Learn more about earning your 8 CE credits.

Can I download the course to a computer or mobile device?

Once you have signed up for the course, you can download the complete transcript and course workbook on the “Welcome” page of the course.

How do I obtain a certificate of completion outside of the US & Canada?

Once you have taken the course, you can take the required test any number of times over a 12-month period. After you pass the exam, you will be able to print out a certificate of completion as evidence that you completed the 10-hour course. Learn more about earning your completion certificate.

How do I purchase Dr. Brown’s book Attachment Disturbances in Adults?

You can purchase Attachment Disturbances in Adults: Treatment for Comprehensive Repair on Amazon.

To whom can I send feedback or suggestions?

We are always happy to receive suggestions that could help us improve the user experience. Contact us. Please be aware that we cannot respond individually to every message, although we do read all emails.

What is your refund policy?

We unconditionally guarantee satisfaction for all clinical training courses offered by The Attachment Project for up to 7 days. If our products fail to meet your expectation for any reason, simply contact us.

What is your Grievance Policy?

Commonwealth Educational Seminars (CES) seeks to ensure equitable treatment of every person and make every attempt to resolve grievances in a fair manner. Please submit a written grievance to us via our contact page. Grievances would receive, to the best of our ability, corrective action in order to prevent further problems.

Not sure where to start? Let us help…

View Faculty

Meet our world-class faculty of attachment specialists.

Clinical Courses

Transformational learning while earning CE credits.

Clinical Videos

Watch the clinical interview series with our faculty.

Order Book

Attachment Disturbances in Adults is on Amazon.

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