Steven N. Gold, Ph.D.



Steven N. Gold, Ph.D.

Nova Southeastern University

Center for Psychological Studies

3301 College Avenue  Fort Lauderdale, FL 33314  

(954) 262-5714



Steven N. Gold, Ph.D. is a Professor at Nova Southeastern University (NSU) Center for Psychological Studies  in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.  He also founded and serves as Director of the Trauma Resolution Integration Program (TRIP) at NSU's Psychological Services Center.   Dr. Gold currently serves as president of the American Psychological Association (APA) Division of Trauma Psychology (56)  and is a past president of the  International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISSTD) . He is editor of the APA Division 56 scientific journal Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice and Policy , and was founding co-editor of the Journal of Psychological Trauma (formerly the Journal of Trauma Practice). Dr. Gold earned his doctoral degree at Michigan State University and his bachelor's degree at Washington University in St. Louis.




Areas of Specialization



Dr. Gold specializes in research, treatment of and training in psychological trauma and trauma-related disorders, dissociation, hypnosis, and sexual addiction-compulsivity.  He has written many articles for professional journals and chapters in edited volumes and presented on these topics at national and international professional conferences. He is the author of Not Trauma Alone: Therapy for Child Abuse Survivors in Family and Social Context, co-editor of the books Trauma Practice in the Wake of September 11, 2001 and Trauma and Serious Mental Illness, and was guest editor of a special issue of the APA Division of Psychotherapy journal Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training on trauma-related disorders and treatment.  Dr. Gold is a Certified Traumatologist with the Traumatology Institute, and is an Approved Consultant with the American Society for Clinical Hypnosis. He is also a fellow of APA and International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation, and a member of the Society for the Advancement of Sexual Health and of the organization MaleSurvivor. He serves as a board member of the Sidran Institute for Traumatic Stress Education & Advocacy and is on the advisory board of the Leadership Council on Child Abuse & Interpersonal Violence.






The Trauma Resolution and Integration Program (TRIP)



The Trauma Resolution Integration Program (TRIP) at Nova Southeastern University’s Psychological Services Center provides psychological services to individuals age 18 and over who are experiencing difficulties related to a history of trauma (e.g. child abuse, natural disaster,physical assault, life threatening accident or injury, political torture, rape, combat trauma), or dissociative experiences.  TRIP also offers doctoral level training in the psychological treatment of difficulties related to abuse, trauma, and dissociation, and conducts ongoing research on these and related topics.  The treatment model and approach developed and employed at TRIP for adult survivors of prolonged child abuse, Contextual Therapy, is described in detail in Dr. Gold's book, Not Trauma Alone: Therapy for Child Abuse Survivors in Family and Social Context.




Upcoming Workshops and Presentations



November 13, 2009. Contextual Therapy: Treating Survivors of Complex Trauma. Sponsored by Meridian Clinical Training. Westin Chicago Northwest Hotel, Itasca, IL.


November 21, 2009. Managing the Pull to Undo Progress in Complex Trauma Clients. Mini- Workshop at the Annual Meeting of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation, Washington, DC. [see:]


Comments About Past Workshops and Presentations


                Your presentation was one of the highlights of the conference, raved about by everyone I talked to.


                Dr. Gold was an excellent presenter – wonderful balance between sharing knowledge, teaching materials, providing real-life examples, humor, respect for clients, etc. At lunch I said, “Dr. Gold could be talking about play-dough and it would be interesting” – a very charismatic speaker!


                You were a wonderful Plenary Speaker and got the conference off to a great start.


                Excellent! One of the best [professional workshops] I’ve been to. Not only was the theoretical base well explained, but also so were specific techniques to use.


                It was a delight to listen to your presentation, Beyond Trauma: Contextual Therapy for Abuse Survivors. I can see why attendees valued it so highly. Your program was articulate, erudite, educational and upbeat.


                We are honored to have Dr. Gold with us and teaching people in Puerto Rico. Hopefully, next time more therapists will benefit of the incredible amount of valuable information. Thank you very much.


                This material (preferably this presenter) need to be shared with all counselors [at this agency]. Do whatever is needed to get him back.


                Dr. Gold’s passion and knowledge about the topic was nourishing and very evident and refreshing. It did not feel “academic” and ivory tower oriented and that was greatly appreciated.


                I am writing to tell you how much your work with [our agency] is appreciated. You made this training a wonderful experience for the staff and participants…. You have special skills with clients and clinicians and I value the gifts you offer the profession.


                Nice to hear some real sensible talk about an area that has been susceptible to fads and some truly whacky ideas.  Thank you!


                I want more of this quality of presenter. He really had something to say and it was worth hearing.


                I thought he was a great presenter, compassion eked through! Explained well and answered questions intelligently and honestly.


                Dr. Gold is a charismatic speaker who exhibited a good sense of humor while integrating a great deal of information with the use of practical examples. I highly encourage [you] to invite him back.


               Most seminars describe the prevalent issues but skim over what to do (at best).  The inclusion of practical application and treatment options is refreshing.


                Dr. Gold is extremely, extremely eloquent in his presentation.  Excellent incorporation of         professional experiences.  I am so glad I attended the workshop.


                 Dr. Gold was an excellent speaker.  Very clear, organized, very respectful and interactive with audience.  East to understand yet complexity of content.


                Dr. Gold was fantastic. Very knowledgeable and dynamic in presentation.


                He is one of the best presenters we’ve ever heard anywhere. We were at his last workshop here, and would come to another by him.








About Contextual Therapy



Contextual therapy is the model of treatment for survivors of prolonged child abuse (PCA) developed at the Trauma Resolution and Integration Program at Nova Southeastern University's Community Mental Health Center. This therapeutic approach is grounded in the observation that in addition to the overt incidents of abuse they are subjected to, PCA survivors often grow up in an interpersonal context that fails to teach them the abilities needed for effective daily functioning.  Contextual therapy addresses the damaging effects of abuse as one component of a broader framework aimed at helping survivors develop adaptive capacities that, rather than having been disrupted by abuse trauma, may have never been established in the first place.  From this perspective abuse trauma is seen as compounding these deficits, rather than as being the sole cause of them.

A detailed description of contextual therapy is presented in Dr. Gold's book, Not Trauma Alone Therapy for Child Abuse Survivors in Family and Social Context  The fundamental premise of the book it is frequently not abuse trauma alone that is responsible for the difficulties of prolonged child abuse survivors, but also growing up essentially alone -- without the consistent emotional support and guidance needed for the development of effective functioning.




Not Trauma Alone




Excerpts From Reviews of Not Trauma Alone:

Gold's sensitivity to the traumatized patient is everywhere in evidence throughout this volume. Because he considers it extremely problematic when therapists assume that abuse unquestionably lies at the root of the presenting complaint, he is able to view abuse victims as whole people whose psychological problems may not be defined exclusively by the abuse incident. This represents a bold step forward. I wholeheartedly recommend this book as a worthwhile addition, not only to the trauma literature, but to our understanding of the human condition.

American Journal of Psychotherapy


....this book is a thought-provoking alternative way of approaching a difficult treatment population. It will lead many readers to question the "accepted wisdom" of their preferred approaches to PCA survivors, and it offers concrete treatment strategies that many will wish to try for themselves. Journal of Trauma & Dissociation

Dr. Gold has contributed a much-needed resource to assist clinicians in working with individuals reporting prolonged childhood abuse. This book represents a significant shift in treatment of child abuse survivors in that Gold purports that direct confrontation of the traumatic incidents may be one aspect of treatment for survivors, but should not be the primary focus for most survivors. The book is written so as to make it easy to put principles and guidelines into practice. Trauma, Violence & Abuse

Not Trauma Alone brings forward in a practical and insightful manner the perception that traumatic resolution can occur outside of the abuse-focused therapy that many of us have been trained in.... Dr. Gold has masterfully provided many learners and clinicians an additional approach to treatment that is likely, in my opinion, to impact on not only how treatment happens, but also its very definition. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! National Council on Sexual Addiction and Compulsivity News

Steven Gold offers therapeutic efforts and treatment techniques that serve to support client-therapist connection and renewed accountability to wellness, using a present-day focus that cultivates adaptive living skills....This is an essential and rewarding read that promises to enrich the texture of treatment for both clinicians treating adult survivors of child abuse as well as by traumatologists struggling to help any number of people throughout the world. Sidran Institute

This book is about post-modern psychotherapy for people abused as children; a systems sensitive, transgenerational, goal-oriented, respectful approach to helping people of all ages confront, manage, and draw strength from overcoming a legacy of maltreatment. From the first moment I understood Professor Gold's thesis, I knew that this gentle and wise approach had great promise for a wide group of traumatized people. Charles R. Figley, Director, Traumatology Institute, Florida State University, Tallahasee, FL


Steven Gold is a skilled clinical researcher with a special affinity, understanding, and empathy for the plight of adult survivors of pervasive and prolonged abuse. Not Trauma Alone is an important book and a brave clinical contribution due to its shift away from a strict abuse-trauma orientation to one that is more trauma-responsive and more encompassing. Christine Courtois, Director, The CENTER: Posttraumatic Disorders Program at the Psychiatric Institute of Washington DC

I, who have worked as a therapist for twenty years, had a major "Aha" moment as I read this. I saw clearly that for many of my clients it was not so much what happened to them as what never happened: never having had the experience of begin welcomed into the world, cherished and guided by loving caretakers, they are more alone than most people can even imagine. No wonder some of my clients resisted the focus on specific trauma treatment, using treatment modalities that have been empirically tested and validated. This much more subtle and compassionate understanding is the next frontier in my opinion, of therapy for trauma survivors. Anonymous Reviewer,


I had the pleasure to meet Dr. Gold at a conference in New York City for male survivors of CSA and was blown away by the presentation he gave. I was even more impressed by the brief discussions we had after his presentation. Dr. Gold is a therapist of rare insight, patience, dedication, and intellect (all essential traits in anyone who works with suriviors).

Not Trauma Alone is a standout work in the field of working with clients who have experience prolonged periods of childhood abuse. (And it's a tragically rare book in this area as well).

His work shows the limitations of viewing us through the lens of trauma alone. Though it's easy to grasp onto the horror of the experience of sexual abuse and see that as the lynchpin of the problems that adult survivors face, the truth is that these attacks often happen in a much broader context of a childhood marked by neglect, abandonment, fear, and powerlessness. This experience can often leave a child marked and vulnerable to the manipulations of abusers, but more importantly this kind of upbringing leaves the adult who survives struggling to adapt and feel comfortable living in a complex world.

This book is essential reading for any therapist who has clients who have suffered from significant childhood abuse, and for any survivor who is looking to gain a greater understanding of why they feel the way they do.




Trauma Practice in the Wake of September 11, 2001



Excerpts From Reviews of Trauma Practice in the Wake of Se.ptember 11, 2002:

EXTRAORDINARILY TIMELY AND IMPORTANT. . . . It is now a different world that confronts mental health professionals.This book presents both broad theoretical perspectives and the personal accounts of some who have required care and those who provide it. It begins to help us understand the changes of the post 9/11 era--how domestic terrorism has affected the national psyche as well as individuals, inflicting new wounds and awakening old hurts. - James A. Chu, MD, Director, Trauma and Dissociative Disorders Program, McLean Hospital, Belmont, Massachusetts; Editor, Journal of Trauma & Dissociation




Trauma and Serious Mental Illness



Excerpts from Reviews of Trauma and Serious Mental Illness:

A TRULY GROUNDBREAKING VOLUME that is likely to engender controversy, as it challenges a culturally and well accepted myth that trauma is irrelevant to the lives of people living with psychosis. . . . Takes our understanding of psychosis bey0nd the simply biological and places it in the realm of the biopsychosocial. – Laura Brown, PhD, ABPP, Director, Fremont Community Therapy Project, Seattle, WA

ENGAGING AND INTELLIGENT . . . PROBING AND INSIGHTFUL. . . . GOLD AND ELHAI HAVE DONE A SUPERB JOB in selecting and shaping contributions that range from historical analyses to new empirical results. . . . The pioneering volume opens up a crucially important dialog that will inspire new research and new interventions for serious mental illness. – Jennifer J. Freyd, PhD, Professor of Psychology, University of Oregon   




Selected Books and Chapters in Edited Volumes





Gold, S. N. (2000). Not trauma alone: Therapy for child abuse survivors in family and social context. Philadelphia, PA: Brunner/Routledge.


Gold, S. N., & Faust, J. (2001). Trauma practice in the wake of September 11, 2001. Binghamton, NY: Haworth Press.


Gold, S. N., & Elhai, J. D. (2008). Trauma and serious mental illness. Binghamton, NY: Haworth Press.



Hyman, S.  M., Gold, S. N., & Sinha, R. (2009). Coping with stress and trauma in young adulthood. In J. E. Grant and M. N. Potenza, Eds. Young Adult Mental Health. New York: Oxford University Press.

Gold, S. N., & Seibel, S. L. (2009). Treating dissociation: A contextual approach. In P. F. Dell and J. O’Neill, Eds. Dissociation and the dissociative disorders: DSM-V and beyond. New York: Routledge.


Gold, S. N., (2009). Contextual therapy: A treatment designed for complex trauma survivors. In C.A. Courtois and J.D. Ford, Eds. Complex trauma disorders: An evidence-based clinician’s guide. New York: Guilford.

Gold, S.N. (2004). The contextual treatment model. In D.R. Catherall, Ed. Handbook of stress, trauma and the family. Philadelphia, PA: Brunner-Routledge.


Gold, S. N. (2000). Sexual addiction. In C. D. Bryant. Encyclopedia of criminology and deviant behavior. Philadelphia, PA: Brunner/Routledge.


Gold, S.N., & Brown, L.S. (1999).  Adult survivors of sexual abuse.  In R.T. Ammerman and M. Hersen, Eds., Sons. Assessment of family violence: A clinical and legal source book, 2nd Ed (pp. 390-412).  New York: John Wiley & Sons.


Gold, S.N.& Bacigalupe, G. (1998).  Interpersonal and systems theories.  In D.F. Barone, M. Hersen & V.B. Van Hasselt, Eds., Advanced personality.  New York: Plenum.


Gold, S.N.  (1998). Dealing with defensiveness.  In M. Hersen & V.B VanHasselt, Eds., Basic interviewing:A practical guide for counselors and clinicians (pp. 151-164). Mahwah, New Jersey.

: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.


Johnson, N.L. & Gold, S.N. (1995).  The defense mechanism profile: A scored sentence completion test.  In H.R. Conte & R. Plutchik, Eds.  Ego defenses: Theory and measurement (pp. 247-262). N.Y.: Brunner-Mazel.


Gold, S.N. & DePiano, F. (1992).  The assessment competency area.  In R. Peterson & J. McHolland, Eds.  The core curriculum in professional psychology (pp. 89-95). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.  




Selected Articles In Refereed Professional Journals



Courtois, C. A., & Gold, S. N. (2009). The need for inclusion of psychological trauma in the professional curriculum: A call to action. Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice and Policy, 1(1), 3-23


Gold, S. N. (2009). About Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice and Policy. Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice and Policy, 1(1), 1-2


Gold, S. N. (2008). Benefits of a contextual approach to understanding and treating complex trauma. Journal of Trauma and Dissociation, 9(2), 269-292.


Gold, S. N. (2007). Trauma and serious mental illness: Is the pendulum about to swing? Journal of Psychological Trauma, 6(2-3), 1-5.


Dalenberg, C., Lowenstein, R., Spiegel, D., Brewin, C., Lanius, R., Frankel, S., Gold, S., van der Kolk, B., Vermetten, E., Butler, L., Koopman, C., Courtois, C., Dell, P., Nijenhuis, E., Chu, J., Sar, V., Palesh, O., Cuevas, C., &  Paulson, K. (2007). Scientific study of the dissociative disorders. Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics, 76(6), 400-401.


Gold, S. N., & Decleire, L. (2006). La dissociation comme dimension essentielle du développement humain [Dissociation as an essential dimension of human development]. Revue Balint, 100, 29-32.


Gold, S.N. (2004). The relevance of trauma to general clinical practice. Psychotherapy [Special Issue - The Psychological Impact of  Trauma: Theory, Research, Assessment and Intervention.], 41(4), 363-373.


Gold, S.N., Hyman, S.M., & Andres-Hyman, R.C. (2004). Family of origin environments in two clinical samples of survivors of intra-familial, extra-familial, and both types of sexual abuse. Child Abuse & Neglect, 28, 1199-1212.


Andres, R.C., Cott, M.A., & Gold, S.N. (2004). Ethnicity and sexual orientation mitigate ptsd in childhood sexual abuse survivors. Journal of Family Violence, 19(5), 319-325.


Gold, S.N. (2004). The relevance of trauma to general clinical practice. Psychotherapy [Special Issue - The Psychological Impact of  Trauma: Theory, Research, Assessment and Intervention.], 41(4), 363-373.


Hyman, S. M., Gold, S. N., & Cott, M. A. (2003). Forms of social support that moderate ptsd in childhood sexual abuse survivors. Journal of Family Violence, 8(5), 295-300.


Klotz Flitter, J.M., Elhai, J.D., & Gold, S.N. (2003). MMPI-2 F scale elevations in adult victims of child sexual abuse. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 16, 269-274.


Elhai, J.D., Frueh, B.C., Gold, P.B., Hamner, M.B., & Gold, S.  (2003).  Posttraumatic stress, depression, and dissociation as predictors of MMPI-2 Scale 8 scores in combat veterans with PTSD. Journal of Trauma and Dissociation, 4, 51-64


Gold, S.N., & Seifer, R.E. (2002). Dissociation and sexual addiction/compulsivity: A contextual approach to conceptualization and treatment. Journal of Trauma & Dissociation, 3 (4), 59-82.


Gold, S.N. (2001). Conceptualizing child sexual abuse in interpersonal context: Recovery of people, not memories. Journal of Child Sexual Abuse, 10, 51-71.


Gold, S.N., Elhai, J.D., Rea, B.D., Weiss, D., Masino, T., Morris, S.L., & Mcininch, J. (2001). Contextual treatment of dissociative identity disorder: Three case studies.  Journal of Trauma & Dissociation, 2, 5-36.


Elhai, J.D., Gold, S.N., Mateus, L.F., & Astaphan, T.A. (2001). Scale 8 elevations on the MMPI-2 among women survivors of childhood sexual abuse: Evaluating posttraumatic stress, depression, and dissociation as predictors. Journal of Family Violence, 16, 47-58.


Elhai, J. D., Gold, S. N., Sellers, A. H., & Dorfman, W. I. (2001). The detection of malingered posttraumatic stress disorder with MMPI-2 fake bad indices. Assessment, 8, 217-232.


Elhai, J. D., Klotz Flitter, J. M., Gold, S. N., & Sellers, A. H. (2001). Identifying subtypes of women survivors of childhood sexual abuse: An MMPI-2 cluster analysis. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 14, 153-169.


Hill, E. L., Gold, S. N., & Bornstein, R. F. (2000). Interpersonal dependency among adult survivors of childhood sexual abuse in therapy.  Journal of Child Sexual Abuse, 9 (2), 71-86.


Lucenko, B. A., Gold, S. N., & Cott, M. A. (2000). Relationship to perpetrator and posttraumatic symptomatology among sexual abuse survivors. Journal of Family Violence, 15, 169-179.


Lucenko, B. A., Gold, S. N., Elhai, J. D., Russo, S. A., & Swingle, J. M. (2000). Relations between coercive strategies and MMPI-2 scale elevations among women survivors of childhood sexual abuse. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 13, 169-177.


Gold, S.N., Hill, E.L., Swingle, J.M., & Elfant, A.S. (1999).  Relationship between childhood sexual abuse characteristics and dissociation among women in therapy. Journal of Family Violence, 14, 157-171.


Gold, S. N., Lucenko, B., Elhai, J., Swingle, J. M., & Sellers, A. (1999). A comparison of psychological/psychiatric symptomatology of women and men sexually abused as children. Child Abuse & Neglect, 23, 683-692.


Gold, S. N., Hughes, D. M., & Swingle, J. M. (1999). Degrees of memory of childhood sexual abuse among women survivors in therapy. Journal of Family Violence, 14, 35-46.


Gold, S.N., Elhai, J., Lucenko, B., Swingle, J.M., & Hughes, D.M. (1998).  Abuse characteristics among childhood

sexual abuse survivors in therapy: A gender comparison. Child Abuse & Neglect, 22, 1005-1012.


Gold, S.N., Swingle, J.M., Hill, E.L., & Elfant, A.S. (1998).  Acts of childhood sexual abuse: An empirically derived typology.  Journal of Family Violence, 13, 233-242.


Gold, S.N., & Heffner, C.L. (1998).  Sexual addiction: Many conceptions, minimal data. Clinical Psychology Review, 18, 367-381.


Gold, S.N.  (1997). Training professional psychologists to treat survivors of childhood sexual abuse.  Psychotherapy, 34, 365-374.


Gold, S.N.  (1997).  False memory syndrome: A false dichotomy between science and practice. American Psychologist, 52, 988-989.


Gold, S.N.  (1997).  False memory syndrome: A false dichotomy between science and practice. American Psychologist, 52, 988-989.


Gold, S.N., & Brown, L.S. (1997).  Therapeutic responses to delayed recall: Beyond recovered memory. Psychotherapy, 34, 182-191.


Gold, S.N., Hughes, D.M. & Swingle, J.M. (1996).  Characteristics of childhood sexual abuse among female survivors in therapy.  Child Abuse & Neglect, 20, 323-335.


Gold, S.N., Hughes, D., & Hohnecker, L. (1994).  Degrees of repression of sexual abuse memories.  American Psychologist, 49, 441-442.



Last Updated 09/14/09