Laurie Kahn (she/her), MA, MFA, LCPC

As a therapist and as a writer I am keenly aware of the power of words to give voice, and to heal.  The experience of those injured or betrayed as children is often wordless.  Children are silenced and robbed of their stories.  I think of myself as a midwife to my clients’ untold stories, helping them to create new narratives that restore meaning and dignity.

Laurie Kahn (she/hers), MA, MFA, LCPC  is the founder and director of Womencare Counseling & Training Center.  She is a pioneer in the field of trauma treatment.  For nearly forty years, her ideas and expertise have served clients who have experienced childhood trauma.

In addition, her contribution to the training and support of clinicians is far reaching and enduring.  She has encouraged and fostered trauma informed work through the development of on-going training programs, providing professional workshops at international and local conferences and mentoring individual clinicians.

Her most salient contribution to the field is the concept of child abuse as a traumatic experience of love.  In her book, Baffled by Love: Stories of the Lasting Impact of Childhood Trauma Inflicted by Loved Ones Laurie includes strands from her own story, interwoven with her clients’ stories.  It is where her passion for stories and her experience as a psychotherapist find each other.  “The truth is,” Laurie says, “between the client and the therapist is our shared humanity, flawed and glistening.”

In her capacity as a teacher, mentor, and consultant, Laurie sees the gifts of each therapist while challenging them and fostering their growth and development. 

For the last twenty years, as co-creator of the, Trauma Consultation Training Program, she has trained practitioners throughout the Chicago area in the treatment of trauma and post traumatic stress disorders.  She has presented at the First African Conference on Traumatic Stress in South Africa and at annual conferences of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies and The International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation.  She has been honored by the Family Institute as Alumna of the Year for her dedication to the field of family therapy.

Although Laurie is a frequent presenter at conferences in the field of trauma, she insists, “There are no real experts in trauma; we are all humbled in its wake.”  To work with those who have been traumatized, she believes, necessitates both humility and responsibility.  To read and hear more from Laurie click here.

Laurie’s areas of specialty:

  • Impact of trauma on love
  • Consultation 
  • Training 

Laurie can be reached at 847-475-7003 x 22

Laurie facilitates the group:

Survivors of Trauma and Childhood Abuse:  An ongoing psychotherapy group for female childhood abuse survivors

Laurie is available to train, present or consult on:

  • The Theory and Treatment Implications of Betrayal Trauma
  • Relational Trauma, Relational Repair: A Relational Model for the Treatment of Complex PTSD
  • Treating the Lasting Effects of Childhood Trauma: A Phase-Oriented Model
  • Workshop on Workshops: Designing and Presenting Workshops or In-Service Trainings
  • The Therapeutic Impasse: Reenactments, Countertransference Dilemmas and Other Therapeutic Challenges
  • Love Gone Wrong: The Treatment of Relational Trauma and Its Impact on Survivor Capacity to Form Healthy Relationships
  • The Art of Being a Trauma Therapist: Exploring the Uses of Self-Disclosure to Enhance Trustworthiness and Safety
  • The Cost of Caring: Understanding Compassion Fatigue and Vicarious Trauma
  • Listening to the Language of Trauma: Showing and Telling

Education and Credentials

MA (Masters Degree in Interpersonal and Therapeutic Communications, Counseling Psychology), 1976, Governor’s State University

MFA (Master of Fine Arts in Creative Non-Fiction), Goucher College, 2010

LCPC (Illinois Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor)

Certificate in Family Therapy, 1996, Northwestern University Family Institute

Certified Transactional Analyst 1982

Professional Affiliations

Illinois Chapter of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation (ISST-D)

The International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies (ISTSS)

American Psychological Association (APA)


Kahn, L. (2017).  Baffled by Love: Stories of the Lasting Impact of Childhood Trauma by Loved Ones.  She Writes Press.

Kahn, L. (2009).  Book Review: Cultural Competence in Trauma Therapy: Beyond the Flashback, Journal of Trauma and Dissociation, 10(1), 123.

Kahn, L. (2012). Book Review: The Trauma Recovery Group: A Guide for Practitioners, Journal of Trauma and Dissociation, 13:596–598, 2012

Kahn, L. (2007). Listening to the Untold Stories. In Other Voices, Ed. Norb Blei. Door County, WI: Cross+Roads Press.

Kahn, L, (2006). The Understanding and Treatment of Betrayal Trauma As a Traumatic Experience of Love. Journal of Trauma Practice, 5(3), 57-72.

Kahn, L. (2003). This Sacred Work. Reconstructionist Journal 68(1), 43.