Deschutes Wilderness Therapy Blog

Recent Blog Posts

What is Brainspotting and How we Utilize it at Deschutes Wilderness Therapy

By Deschutes Wilderness Therapy | May 2, 2023

By Lori Vallelunga, Ph.D., Clinical Director

​​We get asked a  lot of questions about what Brainspotting is. Dr. Vallelunga shares an overview for those curious about this modality and how it can help you or a loved one struggling with mental health challenges.


Caring for Your Child, “in loco parentis”

By Deschutes Wilderness Therapy | April 17, 2023

By Daryn Reiner, Deschutes Admissions Director

I have been in the mental health field for about 18 years now, and my greatest honor in all these years has been the opportunity to live up to the immense trust parents place in us when enrolling their child.


What is Canine Therapy? Deschutes Wilderness Therapy’s Unique Approach

By Deschutes Wilderness Therapy | March 29, 2023

By Rachel Grimm, Program Director

Rachel Grimm, Deschutes Wilderness Therapy’s program director, helps demystify canine therapy and how our program incorporates canines into our process. Grimm, program director since 2018, established the canine program in 2015, and today canine therapy is one of the key program pillars at DWT.


Notes from the Field: Empowering Field Guides to Navigate the Challenges of Wilderness Therapy.

By Deschutes Wilderness Therapy | February 28, 2023

By Nick Ho
Living with and doing trauma-informed healing work with adolescents and young adults in the woods of central Oregon is one of those things that you can never be fully prepared for. Some days you’re doing wound care for a student’s self-harm injuries, others you’re singing Taylor Swift songs in chorus. Some days you’re navigating the complexities of disordered eating in the wilderness, others still you’re sitting next to a student who breaks down crying because you’re the first male figure in their life to say you’re proud of them. Even on the simplest of days, you’re practicing calming and controlling your own nervous system when surrounded by dysregulated teenagers threatening to run away in the middle of the night or punch you in the face.


What is “Experiential” and Why it’s at the Heart of Wilderness Therapy

By Deschutes Wilderness Therapy | November 8, 2022

Experiential is integral to what we do at Deschutes Wilderness Therapy, and yet there is a lot of confusion around just what that means. A few of our experts, Allison Twidwell, Experiential Education Director, and  Bianca Milia, Deschutes Young Adult Field Director, share what it is and how it supports the therapeutic process for young adults…


Shining a Light on Codependency and Narcissism

By Deschutes Wilderness Therapy | August 4, 2022

The conversation around codependent and narcissistic behavior has gained popularity over the last decade. A stereotype is that codependent equals ‘needy.’ However, codependency and narcissism are similar in that they are both driven by need, albeit in different ways. We will discuss their similarities and differences and how they can present in family, partner, and…

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