Quarterly Seminar

  • 17 Sep 2021
  • 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM
  • Online via Zoom


  • NYCEFT is committed to becoming an anti-racist organization that embodies inclusion, diversity, equity and belonging. $30 of this seminar fee will be used to support our efforts.

Registration is closed

quarterly seminar


Risk in being witnessed: choreographing emotionally vulnerable dialogues in a psychoeducational group for diverse couples

Presented by Traci Maynigo, Psy.D. and Lisbeth parra , M.S., MHC-LP 

This workshop focuses on the integration of psychodynamic group therapy, multicultural psychology, emotionally focused therapy, and Gottman Method couple therapy to facilitate corrective emotional experiences between intimate partners in a psychoeducational group. For 15 years, Montefiore’s Supporting Healthy Relationships Program has delivered psychoeducational groups to thousands of Bronx families, emphasizing a secure stable relationship as integral to optimal emotional well-being. For low-income families, relationship stability seems unattainable, due to the stress of intergenerational trauma and structural inequity. According to our outcomes study, participants showed significant improvements in relationship satisfaction, communication, and emotional intelligence. Careful attention to the specific cultural needs of our target population (56% Hispanic, 36% Black) drives these promising results. Latinx Spanish-speaking couples, who comprised more than half of the participants, were more likely to show improvements in relationship satisfaction. What is driving these outcomes? At the heart of Montefiore’s culturally adapted and experiential approach is the choreographing of new, emotionally vulnerable conversations between partners, using EFT interventions, in the context of a psychoeducational group. While these emotionally risky dialogues are challenging to facilitate in-person, doing so virtually can be especially challenging. We have found, however, that the complexity and nuance of these EFT enactments have translated readily from in-person to virtual.

Through video presentations of group leaders in action, participants will learn how to: orchestrate EFT enactments to allow partners to safely access, express, and respond to vulnerable emotion (virtually and in-person); discern cultural variations in attachment and emotion to ensure cross-cultural application; and utilize here-and-now processing to facilitate a self-reflective feedback loop between the couple and group, thereby ushering emotional change among all group members.

This seminar will include a particular focus on the experiences of our Latinx Spanish-speaking couples, and a discussion of cultural differencesin emotional experience, expression, and engagement among them. Common barriers to vulnerability related to gender expectations (e.g., machismo) will be addressed. Through video clips of group leaders in action during virtual Zoom sessions, presenters will demonstrate how to nurture emotional safety between partners by utilizing culturally competent skills that are especially effective in heralding emotional change among Latinx clients, such as labeling non-verbals, “slicing it thinner,” enactments, and self-disclosure.

When: Friday, September 17th, 2021

3:00PM-5:00PM EST

Where: Online via Zoom

Cost:  Supporter of NYCEFT Diversity Initiatives - $60 ($30 towards diversity fund);  Non-member rate – $32; NYCEFT Member rate – $26; Full time agency, active or former military, graduate students, VA employees $16 

Note: this seminar was recorded and is available for 30 days.


Traci Maynigo, Psy.D.

    Dr. Traci Maynigo is a licensed clinical psychologist specializing in couple and family therapy, multicultural psychology, and maternal mental health. She is the Program Director of two federally funded family strengthening programs at Montefiore Medical Center: Supporting Healthy Relationships and HERO Dads. SHR is focused on providing relationship and parenting education to low-income couples, and HERO Dads is focused on providing parenting and relationship education and vocational services to low-income non-custodial fathers. She has been researching and writing about relationship education, parenting, and diverse couples and families, with a particular interest in intercultural couples, for the past decade. She received her bachelor’s degree in English from Yale University, master’s in Counseling Psychology from Teachers College, Columbia University, and doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Rutgers University Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology. She has specialized training in Gottman Method Couple Therapy and Emotionally Focused Couple Therapy (EFT), and is also a Certified Bringing Baby Home (BBH) Educator, PREP 8.0 Instructor, and 24/7 Dad Facilitator. She also holds a faculty position at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Outside of SHR, Traci enjoys singing, dancing, writing, and kickboxing. She and her husband live in Queens with their 2 children and dog. To contact Dr. Maynigo, please email

Lisbeth parra , M.S., MHC-LP 

  Lisbeth Parra, MHC-LP is a bilingual mental health counselor who provides compassionate, comprehensive, and genuine services to both English- and Spanish-speaking families. She is a Relationship and Parent Coach at Montefiore’s Supporting Healthy Relationships and HERO Dads, two federally funded family strengthening programs for low-income families. She has received extensive training in Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy, has received certification in Gottman training levels 1 and 2, and Prevention and Relationship Education Program (PREP) 8.0, as well as the National Fatherhood Initiative's 24/7 Dad curriculum. Lisbeth received her bachelor’s degree in Applied Psychology and Human Relations from Pace University in 2017, as well as her master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling in 2019. Lisbeth completed her Mental Health Counseling internship at Supporting Healthy Relationships during her final training year, and was subsequently hired as a full-time staff member. Lisbeth enjoys reading novels and writing poems, as well as spending time with her family and dog, Layla. To contact Lisbeth, please email

Cancellation Policy:  There are no refunds for cancelled registration.  

For more information contact our administrator, Arash DeMaxi, at

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