Monte Nido & Affiliates Trauma Protocol


Individuals struggling with the aftermath of a traumatic experience require an effective protocol ensuring long lasting results. It is important to specifically ask treatment centers to provide detailed descriptions of their trauma protocol and how they offer this important and sensitive support. At Monte Nido & Affiliates, we offer a clear methodology that will treat trauma patients with care, compassion and practices that work.

Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT) is the chosen model we use at our locations because it has strong empirical research and outcomes. This type of therapy is manualized but still leaves room for flexibility based on the patient’s needs. Features of this treatment include targeting perceived cognitive distortions and challenging the patient through socratic questioning. This type of questioning allows patients to reach conclusions themselves and promotes inner reflection. Somatic experiences, such as mindfulness and yoga, are incorporated into the program as well, although it is not our direct method for treating trauma. The CPT process is also integrated with other modalities such as Dialectal Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR).

At every location that offers this programming, there is a trained staff member on call. These treatment plans are administered through certified therapists that have undergone extensive training by Dr. Patricia Resick. She has administered national two-day training programs at locations in Malibu, Miami and Briarcliff. Additionally, Dr. Resick continues to check in with supervision calls with the clinicians at our locations to ensure each patient is receiving the best care possible.

Knowing your loved one is struggling with the aftermath of a traumatic experience can be a devastating process and we are here to help ease your pain. If you are ready to take a step toward healing, please visit our admissions page here.

For more information about Clementine adolescent treatment programs, please call 855.900.2221, visit our websitesubscribe to our blog, and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

The Sun and Wind Dispute: Navigating Motivation and Readiness for Change in Adolescents with Eating Disorders


Clementine Miami Pinecrest Clinical Director Bertha Tavarez, PsyD discusses treating an adolescent who is resistant and treatment ambivalent. Dr. Tavarez offers some strategies to help strengthen the therapeutic alliance and build the groundwork necessary for full recovery. 

“The sun and the wind were having a dispute as to who was more powerful. They saw a man walking along and they had a bet as to which of them would get him to remove his coat. The wind started first and blew up a huge gale, the coat flapped but the man only fastened the buttons and tightened up his belt. The sun tried next and shone brightly making the man sweat. He took off his coat.” – Anonymous

The metaphor of the sun and the wind is an accurate depiction of the challenges that many clinicians face while working with adolescent patients. Although we may have access to the gravity of our patient’s clinical needs, simply communicating our concerns and providing much needed skills can be met with resistance. Our patients remain “locked in” to their emotional experience while simultaneously feeling “locked out” of the insight and motivation needed to increase their receptivity to much needed skills development. The adolescent, preoccupied with exerting and maintaining control and autonomy, may hold tightly to their coat, rendering our intentions to provide care futile.

So how do we, like the sun, create shifts in awareness and influence change?

The power of reflection

It may be tempting to adopt the roll of cheerleader (“You can do this!”) or problem solver (“Why don’t you try this?”). When an adolescent patient presents with resistant talk (“I don’t want to be here”) or talk that inhibits change (“I got straight A’s with ED, what’s the problem?”). Often the simplest and most effective way of building rapport and loosening the grasp of resistance is to simply reflect the patient’s message in your own words. Often, patients are primed for persuasion and direction. Reflection statements can contribute to feelings of validation and interpersonal trust.

Resistance as an interpersonal process / Resistance as developmentally appropriate

It is important to keep in mind that resistance is both developmentally appropriate for adolescent patients and an interpersonal process that occurs within the therapeutic alliance. Although, we may expect a certain degree of resistance on a developmental level, we can provide corrective experiences around resistance that still promote autonomy. A clinician may benefit from awareness about the resistance that is brewing in a session, abstain from engaging in a power struggle, and promote an alliance with the patients’s desire for autonomy.

Highlight intrinsic control

An effective technique that facilitates a shift from resistance talk to change talk is the clinician’s emphasis on the patient’s access to her personal control. A clinician may reflect the pros and cons experienced by the patient:

Patient: “I got straight A’s with ED, what’s the problem? Gosh! That was so hard!”

Therapist: “It sounds like you did well in school this year, but ED made it more difficult.”

A clinician may also reflect a patient’s choice within the constraints of the treatment environment while having the knowledge of the consequences. For example, the patient may be informed of her choice to select what day an exposure is initiated or asked to reflect on her choice to not participate in a group while being aware of consequence of losing a daily privilege as a result.

Shifting focus  

If resistant talk persists, the clinician can shift the focus to another closely relevant therapeutic topic that may tie into the overall theme beneath the resistance. For example, if the patient states, “I don’t want to take medications and that’s final!” the clinician can say, “Ok, how about you tell me how you’re feeling about your overall health today?”

Working with patients experiencing resistance and treatment ambivalence can be challenging. However, there are great opportunities at this treatment phase that can strengthen the therapeutic alliance and build the ground work necessary for lasting change. Motivational interviewing and person-centered techniques are an integral component of the clinical work at Clementine adolescent treatment program.

For more information about Clementine adolescent treatment programs, please call 855.900.2221, visit our websitesubscribe to our blog, and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Southern California Clementine Opening


Monte Nido has been strongly rooted in the eating disorder treatment field with over twenty years of providing treatment in California. We consistently refine program components that are integral to our clients’ ability to become fully recovered, and listen to what professionals tell us there is a need for.

With that in mind, we are delighted to announce that Monte Nido & Affiliates residential treatment program, Clementine, will be opening in the Malibu area in early 2018 for adolescent girls. Created to be sensitive to the developmental needs of this younger population, Clementine tailors medical, psychiatric, clinical and nutritional care in the comfort of a home with the highest level of medical and psychiatric care outside of a hospital. Our adolescent-centric team provides decades of experience in a collaborative environment rarely offered to teens and their families.

All of the Monte Nido & Affiliates programs are connected through our shared histories, vast overlap in mission, treating all clients as people first, dedication to evidence-based eating disorder treatment and our belief that being fully recovered is possible. The Monte Nido and Clementine programs will deliver treatment to adults and adolescents in California, while maintaining their own unique approaches and age- appropriate program components. We hope you will make time to be personally introduced to our Clementine program, meet the team and receive education from the experts who guide our programs through attending any of our upcoming events.


For more information about Monte Nido please call 888.228.1253, visit our website and connect with us on FacebookLinkedInTwitter, and Instagram.

Staying Power: How to Tolerate What Feels Intolerable


Jennifer Kreatsoulas, PhD, RYT is a yoga teacher and yoga therapist specializing in eating disorders and body image. In recovery herself, Jennifer is extremely passionate about helping others reconnect with their bodies and be empowered in their lives. Jennifer works with clients in person and via Skype. She also teaches yoga at the Monte Nido Eating Disorder Center of Philadelphia, is a partner with the Yoga and Body Image Coalition, and leads trauma-sensitive yoga classes. In this week’s post, Jennifer discusses the idea of “staying power” in tolerating what feels intolerable.

While on my healing path from anorexia I’ve had to learn how to tolerate what often felt positively intolerable (my body, food, treatment, calorie increases, exercise restriction, gaining weight, drinking supplements, painful therapy sessions, and much more). I was taught to sit with uneasy feelings and physical discomfort and to wait for them to pass. The reality is that that space and time of “waiting” can be in itself intolerable and set off habitual negative thoughts and behaviors. Yes, learning to be present to discomfort is an important life skill, and that awareness is key, however, I believe that approach can sometimes feel passive and leave us feeling helpless in a difficult moment or situation.

Staying power is what I call super-charged presence. It’s actively and directly taking on intolerable feelings — those feelings that set off negative thoughts and coping behaviors. It’s about staring those painful thoughts down and not letting yourself off the hook with sabotaging and destructive behaviors — like hiding food, over exercising, being dishonest with support people, or checking out by starving, purging, and bingeing. The more we practice staying power and get comfortable with what feels intolerable, then the door to acceptance and the deeper work of healing can open. But first, we have to learn how to NOT escape the feeling.

The minute you have the awareness that you want to dodge, push away, or ignore a feeling or situation is the exact time to tap into your staying power. In yoga, we have a saying: the pose begins the moment you want to come out of it. The same with recovery: the real work begins when we choose to stay and push ourselves to withstand what feels awful. In my experience, practices like mantra, deep breathing, and yoga poses cultivate staying power by creating focused positivity. For others, prayer, art, music, cooking, and nature brings a peace and calm from which to harness clarity and strength.

To learn your power source, reflect on these questions:

  • When in your life do you feel empowered?
  • What activity are you doing?
  • What thoughts, feelings, and emotions do you sense when you feel empowered?
  • How do you hold your body in that moment?

The qualities and activities you identified are your power source. To “stay” with what feels intolerable, you need to plug into your personal power source. It will both protect you from self-sabotaging behaviors and empower you to call on your strengths and not be defeated by what you believe you can’t tolerate.

I get that it’s not easy to REMEMBER your strengths when you feel consumed by an intolerable feeling and you want it to go away ASAP. Most likely, you have habitual responses that will need rewiring. To help you remember your strengths, I encourage you to create an intention that aligns with your power source or carry a grounding stone to help pull yourself out of ED Head and into the moment. You might even ask yourself “WTF” (What’s the Feeling?) when the urge to check out comes on or try this simple yoga practice to interrupt habitual eating disorder rituals.

Here’s the thing: we need to get creative and test out little tricks to begin to make small shifts in our recovery. We can’t cultivate staying power if we don’t actively, directly, and deliberately pull ourselves out of ED Head and use our personal power to rise above the challenge of tolerating what feels intolerable.


For more information about Monte Nido please call 888.228.1253, visit our website and connect with us on FacebookLinkedInTwitter, and Instagram.

Back to School


The start of a school year includes many varied emotions and feelings. Our Clementine adolescent eating disorder treatment program team members have compiled a list of some of their favorite quotes, tips, and advice on maintaining recovery and thriving throughout the school year. We wish all of you returning to school a happy and healthy year!


Ten quotes to start the year:

The way we see the problem is the problem.

The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.

Live out of your imagination, not your history.

We are not human beings on a spiritual journey. We are spiritual beings on a human journey.

Motivation is a fire from within. If someone else tries to light that fire under you, chances are it will burn very briefly.

Management is efficiency in climbing the ladder of success; leadership determines whether the ladder is leaning against the right wall.

Effective leadership is putting first things first. Effective management is discipline, carrying it out.

There are three constants in life… change, choice and principles.

Trust is the glue of life. It is the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It is the foundational principle that holds all relationships.

While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions.

Beginnings are scary! Remember that things are only new for a day. Trust yourself and know that you will adjust and find your way through it.” 

– Clinical Director, Clementine Pinecrest Bertha Tavarez, PsyD

Remember it is OK to be you. Those that really care about you will love you for you and accept you for all of your uniqueness.” 

– Primary Therapist Coral Seco, MS, RMHCI



Make a Bio Poem: Things you want others to know about you

I like it when _______

It upsets me when _________

Anything you want to add that you want others to know about you.

Decorate it to illustrate the true you!


Take it one day at a time.” 

– Recovery Coach Manager Rebecca Garcia

It is essential to fuel your brain and body for a new school year! Make sure to wake up with enough time to have breakfast before school. Prepare your lunch the night before. Pack portable snacks to make snack time easier; try trail mix, chocolate covered pretzels, or peanut butter crackers.” 

– Registered Dietitian Alyssa Mitola, MS, RD, LD/N


Make long and short term goals.

Use a planner with a schedule and decorate it.

Create a Top 10 list of where to seek and find help when you need it. Have contact information included for easy access.


Stay hydrated during the day. Remember to take your vitamins and meds. But, most importantly, listen to your body; when you need to re-fuel, when you need a study break, when you need to close those books and re-charge. Honor your body, as well as your mind. It’s going to be a great school year!” 

– Clementine House Nurse Vanessa Hernandez, BSN, RN

Doing one thing at a time will get everything done.” 

– Primary Therapist Jessica Aron, PsyD 


Learning well is always more important than getting A’s.

When frustrated with homework or an assignment, leave it for a while, do something else, then go back to it.

Aim at being your best self and that will suffice. You can never be a better cat than a cat. If you are a butterfly, be the best butterfly you can be.


Consider joining a club or getting involved in extracurricular activities. It can be a nice way to spend time connecting with peers, meeting new friends, and getting involved in community service and your school.

– Primary Therapist Jeanette Alonso, MSEd, LMHC

School is important, but not more than your inner peace and fulfillment. Choose a schedule that allows you to create balance.  Just because you are capable of something, does not mean it is in your best interest to do it. Allow your heart to be a part of the process when planning your daily schedule and routine.” 

– Oliver-Pyatt Centers Founder and Executive Director Wendy Oliver-Pyatt, MD, FAED, CED

For more information about Clementine adolescent treatment programs, please call 855.900.2221, visit our websitesubscribe to our blog, and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Maintaining Recovery in College: Part Two


Senior Director of East Coast Clinical Programming Dr. Melissa Coffin, PhD, CEDS continues our series on tips for women entering or returning to the collegiate environment after treatment. We hope these tips will assist you in navigating this transition and embolden you to truly enjoy your college experience.

Dr. Coffin has been a pivotal member of Monte Nido & Affiliates since 2008 and has extensive experience in the treatment of anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder and compulsive over-exercise. She has presented nationally on eating disorders, body image, food rules and self-care at conferences by the National Eating Disorder Association, the Binge Eating Disorder Association, and the International Association for Eating Disorder Professionals.

Embrace change. College is an exciting time in life and it is ripe with new opportunities. Be open and flexible to the changes that come with it even if it means trying something that you’ve never done before.
Be mindful. With all of the opportunities in college you have to pick and choose what is most important so you don’t spread yourself too thin. Be conscious around how you spend your time and what you commit to as that will shape your experience.
Engage in self-care. Make sure to schedule time in each day to relax and take care of yourself, even if it’s just for a short time. Having rest, sleep, and time to decompress regularly will help to keep your stress in check.
Stay connected. Not only will you be forming new relationships in school, you still have your family and friends at home. Use your resources to stay connected with old and new.
Ask for help. It’s OK to ask for help from family, friends, and professionals if you need it. There are those on campus that can help you with your mental health, medical health, academics, financial issues, social needs, career planning, et cetera. Reach out and ask for what you need. The counseling or health centers are usually good places to start.


For more information about Clementine adolescent treatment programs, please call 855.900.2221, visit our websitesubscribe to our blog, and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

To learn about summer programming at Clementine, please visit our website or reach out to an Admissions Specialist.

Article Spotlight


Join us in reading inspirational and informative articles we have cultivated from across the web. If you have found an article you feel is inspirational, explores current research, or is a knowledgeable piece of literature and would like to share with us please send an e-mail here.


A Letter to Parents of Children Heading to College Psychology Today

5 Truths About Eating Disorders the Stereotypes Don’t Show The Mighty

Motivation to Recovery: Adolescent Research on Anorexia Eating Disorder Hope

Why Yoga is an Excellent Practice While in Eating Disorder Recovery, and What Parents Should Know More Love

Who Are You Recovering For? Project Heal


For more information about Clementine adolescent treatment programs, please call 855.900.2221, visit our websitesubscribe to our blog, and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

To learn about summer programming at Clementine, please visit our website or reach out to an Admissions Specialist.

“You Better Check Yourself: How to Handle Challenging Situations in the Treatment of Eating Disorders”


Please join Clementine adolescent treatment programs for “You Better Check Yourself: How to Handle Challenging Situations in the Treatment of Eating Disorders” presented by Clementine Medical Director Lauren Ozbolt, MD. 

Parenting an adolescent is really hard work and parenting one navigating an eating disorder greatly intensifies the situation. How do you enforce boundaries and limits when your teenager is underweight and at risk? How do you encourage them to follow rules or a meal plan when they are at a stage of development where they are “supposed to” rebel and not follow the rules? By gaining understanding about the pathology of eating disorders and the normal separation-individuation process of adolescents, we can employ strategies to partner with the adolescent as opposed to fighting this natural process. This presentation will focus on these strategies and tools used in the treatment of adolescent eating disorders.

In this presentation, participants will learn to name three factors that make treating adolescent eating disorders especially challenging, state the developmental tasks of the adolescent and state the rationale for the use of psychotropic medications in eating disorders.

The presentation will take place at Wine Cask in Santa Barbara, CA on Thursday, September 14th. Check-in will begin at 11:30am and the lunch and presentation will be from 12:00-1:30pm. Please RSVP to Regional Outreach Manager Mary Andreasen ( to join.


For more information about Clementine adolescent treatment programs, please call 855.900.2221, visit our websitesubscribe to our blog, and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

To learn about summer programming at Clementine, please visit our website or reach out to an Admissions Specialist.

Maintaining Recovery in College


Maintaining recovery in a collegiate environment can be a difficult road to navigate. At Clementine adolescent treatment programs, we understand there may be challenges, and feel that preparing for these challenges is an essential step in continued recovery. In order to support you in this journey, we have compiled tips on maintaining recovery in a college environment from our clinicians, dietitians, and alumnae.

Director of Nutrition Services Mary Dye, MPH, RD, CEDRD, LD/N provides this week’s tips. Previously, Mary worked in private practice with adolescents and adults struggling with eating disorders. Additionally, Mary held the position of primary dietician for New York University’s Student Health Center and was an integral member of the university’s eating disorder treatment team. We hope these tips will assist you, your loved one, or your clients in this journey and look forward to your thoughts and feedback.

Schedule your snacks into your day and pack accordingly. For example, if you only have fifteen minutes between classes and the snack you prefer is yogurt and granola, be sure to pack it in an insulated bag so your food stays fresh during the earlier class.When choosing your classes, try to consider dining hall hours so it is open during your meal times. If you plan to visit the gym, do so with a friend in order to stay accountable and help yourself stick to time boundaries.

Join campus support groups.

Do not isolate during meals. Try to plan meals with a friend who is a positive nourishment role model.

Keep a week’s worth of snacks in your dorm. Stocking up on too many snacks can feel overwhelming, so try to stick with a variety of four or five snack combinations.

Limit caffeinated beverages to no more than one serving per day. Remember the only true way to increase your energy is through nourishing your body with food and getting restful sleep at night.

Continue to challenge yourself with foods that you made peace with while in treatment. Keep in mind that legalizing food is not checking off the “I tried it” box; instead, it is letting it remain a part of your diet on a longer-term basis until you can consume it without judgement.

For more information about Clementine adolescent treatment programs, please call 855.900.2221, visit our websitesubscribe to our blog, and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

To learn about summer programming at Clementine, please visit our website or reach out to an Admissions Specialist.

Clementine’s Summer Programs


With the summer in full swing, parents and families may find themselves looking for programs that will help treat and prepare their children before they had back to school in the fall. At Clementine, we offer programs that incorporate highly personalized medical, psychiatric and nutritional care with an extensive academic program in an effort to help them make that transition as comfortable as possible.

Summer programming for adolescents take place at our locations in Briarcliff Manor, NY; South Miami, FL and Portland, OR. At all of these locations, school times are still honored the same as they are during the school year but the times are cut in half and end late August. The culture at these locations still focus on personalized, supportive programming and collaboration between faculty, families and patients. However, during the summer we help to attain a new goal of sustainable, preparedness through an additional education plan.

Teachers lead classrooms Monday through Thursday and on Friday recovery coaches take over. Teachers select various topics on current events to incorporate into programming in an effort to prepare adolescents for their transition back into a typical school atmosphere. Each day is dedicated to a different programming aspect. Tuesdays are dedicated to how to write a college essay, how to create an effective budget, how to write a proper letter and how to apply for a job. Wednesdays incorporate a rotation of Ted-Talks and academic games intended to increase socialization skills and conflict resolution. Thursdays are dedicated to movies and discussion and Fridays are career days where local professionals come in to expose adolescents to the professional opportunities in the real world.

It is essential students maintain a balance between their academics and treatment so we make sure to incorporate a sufficient amount of each in their day. If for some reason a student is falling behind there are ways to accommodate based on their specific needs. If a student has a lot of school work, some of the activities listed above can be suspended for a private tutor to come in.

Our summer program at Clementine offers a specific treatment plan for your child on their path to healing with an additional academic component in our curriculum. It is our hope that through this program your child will leave treatment feeling better than before and with a foundation for their future school year.


For more information about Clementine adolescent treatment programs, please call 855.900.2221, visit our websitesubscribe to our blog, and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

To learn more about summer programming at Clementine, please visit our website or reach out to an Admissions Specialist at 855.900.2221.