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Sharpen your skills.

Improve your outcomes.

Become a trauma wise couple therapist.

We started with a list of questions about how to work more effectively with couples and trauma.

We ended up with a set of skills to increase our competency in serving high-trauma couples.

Trauma Wise Couple Therapy is the joint project of Kathryn Barksdale, LPC & Margaret Martin, LCSW, SEP. We met in 2020, brought together by a common interest in complex trauma and couple therapy. We geeked out over all things neuro-nerd and bonded over a mutual frustration with the lack of trauma-informed, trauma-focused couple therapy training.

The strength of our partnership lies in our shared passion and differing perspectives. Together, we create room for questions, curiosity, and a variety of opinions. Join us in pursuing high-quality care and practical solutions for challenging clients.

Your trail guides

on the quest for trauma wise solutions

silhouette of couple of backpackers hiking on the mountain range in sunset
Margaret M (2)

Margaret Martin, LCSW

Margaret is an ISTDP and PACT therapist in Austin, Texas. She can talk your ear off about the clinical use of video recording techniques, trauma-informed care, and deliberate practice. She for the PACT Institute and hosts a monthly discussion group for PACT therapists of all training levels. Margaret completed the PACT Institute’s inaugural invitation-only certification program and is one of 25 therapists worldwide to receive the designation of PACT-certified therapist. She finished ISTDP core training in 2021 and receives regular ISTDP advanced supervision. She is a founding member of an ISTDP video-based, peer-supervision and leaderless process group. She presented on a deliberate practice panel with fellow group members at the 2022 IEDTA conference in Venice. A self-described training junkie, Margaret also trained in Somatic Experiencing, Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing, Emotional Transformation Therapy, and Accelerated Resolution Therapy.


Kathryn Barksdale, LPC

Katie Barksdale, LPC is an individual and couples therapist in private practice in Austin, Texas. She specializes in the treatment of complex trauma and dissociative disorders utilizing Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing, Interpersonal Neurobiology, Internal Family Systems, Trauma Focused Therapy, attachment theory, and parts work. Katie approaches her work with couples through a lens informed by Stan Tatkin’s PACT model, Terry Real’s Relational Life Therapy, and the work of Esther Perrel. A sex-positive trauma therapist armed with a background in research and human sexuality, Katie is passionate about removing the stigma and shame that prevents individuals and couples from experiencing sex and sexuality joyfully. She is a walking library and has an almost encyclopedic knowledge of trauma therapy and the intersection of trauma and sexuality. Although she might deny this, Margaret can attest to it.

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