• Quote of the Day
    "The only normal people are the ones you don't know very well."
    Alfred Adler, posted by David Baxter

healthbound

Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2005
Messages
901
Points
16
I'm considering EMDR therapy and am very interested in hearing about any of your experiences with it. Thanks in advance.
 

Banned

Banned
Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2005
Messages
4,893
Points
36
Healthbound,

Let me know if you end up trying it. I'd be interested in hearing about your experience. I'm still on the fence about it, but my position with my therapist at this point is a firm 'no'.
 

healthbound

Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2005
Messages
901
Points
16
Hey BG,

I'll definitely keep everyone posted if I do it. At this point, I would welcome the opportunity to try it, however I'm not sure that I would be a good candidate for it. I need to do a bit more reading about what makes a good candidate and will talk to my therapist about it on Monday.
 

healthbound

Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2005
Messages
901
Points
16
Just thought I'd post update...

I didn't discuss the EMDR with my therapist today as I have been feeling confused and a bit disorganized today and didn't even remember until we ended our session.

However, I did talk about my panic attack in the anxiety management group (I'm pretty sure I wrote about it in another thread..but sorry, can't recall which one right now) and therefore we spent the time talking about my panic about not being able to visualize a "safe place". My therapist suggested I try doing a visualization surrounding myself with gold...gold lights. She's going to walk me through it next week. I'm looking forward to it.

Anyway, I'm assuming that being able to feel safe or being able to consciously choose to induce a feeling of safety might be the first step I'd need to make in order to become a good candidate for EMDR.

I'll keep you posted.
 

Banned

Banned
Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2005
Messages
4,893
Points
36
Thanks for the update, Healthbound.

I'm seeing my therapist tonight and I think I'm going to talk to him some more about it. I sent him an email yesterday saying I want to "consider" it...so we'll see. I still think it's weird, but I might get desperate enough to try anything....

If I try it I'll let you know. He's said I'm a perfect candidate, but I don't know how much prep work is required. He initially said we'd do it before Christmas, but that was before I put the breaks on.
 

bipolar bear

Member
Joined
Dec 3, 2005
Messages
4
Points
1
I have been using EMDR with a therapist that specializes in trauma. It has been a very good tool for me although it can be very unpleasant at times as any therapy can. It is very intense or at least my experiences have been. I am a believer in it but as with anything I am not sure it is for everyone. It sounds like you are going to make an educated decision which I think is wise. Remember, you can always discontinue should you find it not helpful. Good luck.
 

David Baxter

Administrator
Joined
Mar 26, 2004
Messages
37,565
Points
83
And also that if your experience is too intense, the therapist is there to intervene and to assist you.
 

healthbound

Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2005
Messages
901
Points
16
Hey bipolar bear!

Thanks for your post and welcome!

I imagine it would definitely be unpleasant at times, but so is living with the PTSD :) It is a bit scary knowing that the traumas would be "brought up" again, but I like the idea of learning how to experience them differently. I can't seem to shake them and it is very disturbing.

Would you mind sharing a bit more about your experiences with the EMDR? Like, how many sessions have you done, what is the process, how long you think you will need to engage in this type of therapy?

If not, that's cool too. I'm just eager to hear about personal experiences with it.

Look forward to getting to know you through the posts :)
 

healthbound

Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2005
Messages
901
Points
16
Hey db,

I appreciate that reminder too - when I'm triggered I seem to have pretty dramatic responses. I would like to a) know that response would be "ok" and b) know that the therapist could help me "back to reality".

When I was about 15 I saw a therapist and didn't know it at the time, her guiding me through some of my experiences was triggering me and I was dissociating. I remember that I would be dissociated for almost the full week - only coming back to reality a day or two before my next session with her. I remember being terrified about not knowing how to snap myself out of "it".

Over the past 6 months, I've learned some techniques that have enabled me to at least curb and be more aware of what I'm experiencing. But, when I first began therapy again about a year ago I was being triggered and again, my therapist didn't really know how to handle it which terrified me even more. I think since I started the groups and was exposed to other therapists and they were able to recognize that I was having what they called "flashbacks" things have been better with my one on one therapist.

Guess it just demonstrates how important it is to make sure I'm doing EMDR with a therapist who really specializes in trauma.
 

David Baxter

Administrator
Joined
Mar 26, 2004
Messages
37,565
Points
83
Guess it just demonstrates how important it is to make sure I'm doing EMDR with a therapist who really specializes in trauma.
AND who has received appropriate training in EMDR. That's essential.

I don't do EMDR, for example, because I haven't completed the training (planned to three years in a row and things kept intervening), so if I think someone needs EMDR I refer them to someone who has completed the training. I don't think techniques like that care just about reading a book and thinking you know what to do.
 

healthbound

Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2005
Messages
901
Points
16
Very good point.

Does one get a certificate or something? How do I know if a therapist has complete the training?
 

healthbound

Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2005
Messages
901
Points
16
Thanks David...I didn't realize there was a master list of those therapists who have completed the training. This is a great resource.
 

bipolar bear

Member
Joined
Dec 3, 2005
Messages
4
Points
1
It is very important to have a therapist who is trained in EMDR. I would suggest that the person you see has a history of using this technique successfully over a period of time. My primary therapist had some training in EMDR but felt unqualified in a major trauma case and recommeded the therapist I now see. She specializes in EMDR and trauma a combination I would suggest.

The length of time that an individual uses this therapy is variable depending on how severe the trauma was and how impacted the individual was. I was experiencing numerous flashbacks and body memories prior to me starting with the EMDR. I went through some severe trauma over a period of about 9 years and it was many years before I even addressed it. It has taken me about a year to get to the point where I am now. Due to work I have been seeing her every other week so I don't know how that would equate should you go every week. I continue to see my primary therapist who works in conjuction supporting the EMDR therapist and teaching me coping skills and grounding techniques. I became overwhelmed at one point and we backed off and I learned some DBT skills to help me continue with the EMDR. There are many variations that the therapist can take either working on feeling safe or the trauma itself. The EMDR gets a life of its own and a good therapist will help guide you in a productive manner while letting you progress as your mind takes you.

A good EMDR therapist will not let you get too traumatized and will help teach you grounding techniques and helping you to remain safe during and in-between sessions. There has to be a high level of trust and feeling safe during the sessions. It is a lot of hard work but I am very determined to heal.

I read quite a bit about EMDR prior to ever agreeing to try using it. It is a controversial method of therapy but there is a lot of data supporting its success. I guess I can only attest to the success I have personally had. I have not regretted choosing this path even though there has been some rough times. I am sorry I rambled on so much. If you want to know anything else feel free to ask. Should you decide to try using it I wish you as much success as I am having.
 

healthbound

Member
Joined
Apr 19, 2005
Messages
901
Points
16
Hey bipolar bear,

Thank you for taking the time to explain your thoughts and experiences. I found it very valuable to read what you wrote and actually encourage rambling (I'm a rambler). I would love to hear anything else you have to say about EMDR and your experiences.

I really liked that you wrote,
It is a lot of hard work but I am very determined to heal.
as I also am very determined to heal and will do whatever it takes.

I've been working on "creating a safe place" and feeling safe but have struggled with this. It's because of this that I think that I may not be the best candidate for EMDR yet. I have had a difficult time with even simply relaxing. However, I've definitely made progress and I'll continue to move forward until I can incorporate regular relaxation into my life (my poor adrenal glands have been very strong, but are not doubt very tired!).

Anyway, I look forward to continuing to explore EMDR as an option.
 

Latest posts

Top Bottom