EMDR Intensives help people with trauma-related disorders get better than they expected, sooner than they dreamed.
If you’ve been through trauma, I expect some of these questions to be on your mind:
Do I have trauma?
Let’s start with the obvious. If a professional has recommended EMDR therapy to you, that’s a significant clue, because EMDR is specially designed to treat trauma. Otherwise, here’s a simple test you can give yourself:
1: Did something bad happen to me or a close loved one in the past?
2: Do I have trouble moving on from that past, bad thing?
3: Have I been struggling to enjoy my life and enjoy my loved ones because of that past, bad thing?
If you are nodding “yes” to all 3, a trauma-related disorder might be impacting you. Seeking therapy with a trauma-informed therapist is a great next step for you.
Oh, I am definitely suffering from trauma…Do I have PTSD?
The only way to confirm a diagnosis is to talk directly with a trained mental health professional.
PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) is a type of trauma disorder, but it is not the only one. All trauma disorders change our typical thoughts and behaviors to prevent a dangerous thing from the past from happening again.
People with PTSD can experience the past so intensely that it feels like it is happening again in the present (e.g., flashbacks, nightmares). But there are other symptoms too, like sleep issues, irritability around loved ones, difficulty concentrating, obsessing about the past, and negative thoughts about self and others.
These symptoms can cause a big problem for daily life, with or without the official PTSD diagnosis. Your trauma might show up as depression, or panic attacks, or just a series of really awful relationships, so you’re gonna want to speak with an expert to help you sort your story.
Was what I went through “bad enough” to be called traumatic?
Probably. People can develop trauma disorders from “BIG T” Traumas, like combat, crime, sexual violence, or accidents.
We can also develop these disorders from “little t” traumas like losing an aging loved one, sudden life changes, bad relationships, or betrayals in our childhoods.
And if you’re young when you experienced abuse, neglect, or violence, you might not have even known that you were being traumatized…all you knew is that it you started looking at other people and yourself differently.
So STOP COMPARING what happened to you to what other people went through. Instead, check in with your thoughts and your behaviors. If they are unhealthy, obsessive, overreactive, over-protective, controlling, or out of control, that’s your sign to seek help.
Therapy wasn’t great for me in the past, why should I try EMDR?
Talk therapy is so good for lots of issues and helps many people. I’ve benefitted from it as a client and as a therapist. It works.
Trauma disorders need something different though. That’s because both your mind AND body are holding onto your memories tightly, trying to protect you with a “fight or flight” response.
The difference you’ll feel when you work with me is that we’ll be engaging your mind AND body with specific eye movements, hand tapping, and foot tapping to help you push out the thoughts, feelings, and body sensations that you developed after that stressful interaction, event, or relationship.
EMDR is psychotherapy, just not the therapy you’re used to. It takes a bit of bravery, but you will be well equipped to handle whatever comes up.
How do I get started?
You can get started with a simple message. I’ll send you everything you need to know and coordinate with you to match our availability. You’re not getting a big company or an intern when you contact me. It’s just me, ready to help you.