Centered on the three-channel cognitive behavioral conceptualization of emotion regulation, STAIR provides a “toolbox” of skills for emotion regulation. These skills include cognitive reframing, behavioral activation, mindfulness, distress tolerance, and interpersonal effectiveness, and trauma survivors select to learn them based on their individual needs and preferences. Unlike other PTSD treatments, STAIR does not require exposure or reprocessing of the trauma memory
STAIR is an abbreviated version of Skills Training in Affective and Interpersonal Regulation, (adapted for the peer model). It was originally developed by Dr. Marylene Cloitre at the Veterans’ Administration, and they're the people who did the original research which has shown that the program can make a significant difference in how we handle trauma responses.
We trainers use these tools ourselves all the time, and can vouch for their usefulness. You might already be familiar with some of them (meditative breathing, for example), but we've found it makes a difference to look at them in this format.
STAIR is run by the Boston Resource Center as a sort of combination discussion/presentation--there are slides, but we encourage group members to give input and talk about the topics. After each group, if you've made arrangements with us (basically just telling us so and giving us your email address) you will get a PDF of the slide deck. This material is for your own personal use, and not to be shared!
During the group, although we encourage people to feel safe sharing, we ask that nothing detailed be shared. This reduces the possibility that other participants might be triggered.
We talk a little bit about trauma symptoms, but our focus is on the tools the program teaches which help us move forward with our recovery.
STAIR is currently being run as a drop-in group, so feel free to stop by, especially in the first week, which is a sort of overview.
We ask that you note that STAIR-PC has not been published and is not available for public distribution--please reach out to Dr. Sarah Valentine with inquiries. Laura Godfrey, Dr. Valentine’s research assistant, is also available for queries; here is the link to their website: https://www.bumc.bu.edu/psychiatry/psychiatry-research-center/program-of-research-in-implementation-science-minority-stress-and-mental-health-prismm/
For further and more detailed information, check out our publications:
Smith AM, Stewart K, Baul T, Valentine SE. Peer delivery of a brief cognitive-behavioral treatment for posttraumatic stress disorder: A hybrid effectiveness-implementation pilot study. Journal of Clinical Psychology. 2020; 76 (12): 2133-2154. doi: 10.1002/jclp.23020. PMID: 32632945; PMCID: PMC7665989
Valentine SE, Smith AM, Vo L, Stewart K, Lisle, I. A consultation with feedback approach to supporting fidelity to a peer-delivered intervention for posttraumatic stress disorder. Implementation Research and Practice. In press. doi: 10.1177/26334895211017280
Ametaj AA, Smith AM, Valentine SE. A stakeholder-engaged process for adapting an evidence-based intervention for posttraumatic stress disorder for peer Delivery. Adm Policy Ment Health. 2021 Apr 04. doi: 10.1007/s10488-021-01129-3. PMID: 33813717