NeuroAffective Relational Model (NARM)

NeuroAffective Relational Model, more commonly referred to as NARM, is a cutting-edge model for addressing attachment, relational and developmental trauma. NARM works with the attachment patterns that cause lifelong psychobiological symptoms and interpersonal difficulties. These early unconscious patterns of disconnection deeply affect our identity, physiology, behavior, and relationships. Learning how to work simultaneously with these diverse elements has profound clinical implications for healing complex trauma.
Several practitioners at Sabino Recovery have been trained in NARM and will receive their certification. NARM is a recent development in trauma-informed treatment. It is a training model for clinicians and offers a framework for how we look at trauma. While not well-known yet, fits perfectly with Sabino’s compassionate, trauma-focused care.

NARM offers a new way to envision developmental trauma. As adults, we act in certain ways because of the trauma we experience as children. Children develop survival strategies in response to environmental or cultural failures. For example, when their caregiver does not give them the care they seek, children develop coping mechanisms to self-soothe.

As children, we have a limited ability to process what we perceive as psychological threats. Rather than blame the primary caregiver, many children internalize their fear and shame and so develop a trauma response to that event. As we grow and our frontal lobes develop, we are able to rationalize traumatic events but our lower brain stems still hold the initial response to that event.

When we are triggered and revert to fight or flight mode, we can’t rationally process and revert to childhood coping mechanisms. We seek ways to instantly reregulate our central nervous system and regress to maladaptive coping mechanisms.

As a treatment model, NARM has the potential to be a vital aspect of the Trauma-Informed Care movement. By working with the attachment patterns that cause life-long psychobiological symptoms and interpersonal difficulties, NARM offers a framework for therapists to hold compassion for themselves as they help others navigate healing their trauma.

NARM was developed by a somatic therapist and also includes elements of Internal Family Systems.