EMDR 2.0: The new trauma healing revolution!!!
Researchers in the Netherlands (Holland) have discovered a revolutionary way to simplify EMDR treatment, such that it is possible to completely resolve four or more traumatic memories in one hour, even the most terrible memories of rape, abuse, incest, and emotional abuse. In fact, the more difficult the memory is for the client, the faster it works.
I could have written this entry a month ago, when I took the training for this new version of the trauma therapy I use daily. However, now I can write this blog entry saying, IT WORKS! Some of my most difficult cases have been "cracked" by this method.
It has its place, however, and does not replace traditional EMDR. Let me explain:
There are two ways I describe the effects of traumatic memories, in that they have impact and toxicity. "Impact" refers to the memory's ability to disturb, to punch you in the gut--what people think of when they think of PTSD. "Toxicity," however, refers to the more terrible consequence of trauma, which is the self-beliefs inflicted by the event, such as "I deserve bad things," or "I am damaged goods," or "real love hurts." There are an infinite number of them, but these beliefs 1) set up future trauma, and 2) feed a sense of hopelessness and shame, perhaps what might be called a "spiritual wound," that weaves itself deep into a larger sense of shame involving networks of inter-related toxic memories.
So, EMDR 2.0 is very, very good at dealing with "high impact" memories. And with many memories, there is not much complex belief ("toxicity") to resolve, only disturbance ("impact"). Some examples might be, rape as an adult, a car accident, or abuse by a spouse. One client summarized these memories very bluntly and accurately as "[expletive] that just needs to go." There is nothing to be learned, there is nothing deep--the client simply needs to be freed from the torment of flashbacks, intrusions, etc. EMDR 2.0 is very good with this, and very fast.
However, EMDR 2.0 relies on "high impact" to get its results, in the same way a lumberjack can use a tree's height and weight to make it fall to the ground. Sometimes the effect of that big fall is so striking that it pulls up some roots with it. Let's say that the roots in this case are those nasty beliefs left by trauma ("toxicity"). Very often, EMDR 2.0 gets rid of feelings of fault, for instance. But usually it doesn't go very deep into the radical transformation of self-belief. The roots don't just pop out of the ground when they're as deep as the tree is tall.
This is why "normal EMDR" is useful for "high impact, high toxicity" memories, where self-belief plays a big role. Some painful developmental trauma in childhood is usually an example of this. For instance, a woman may "take to heart" from an abusive parent, at age 5, that love involves shaming and humiliation. As a result, such a girl may wind up with abusive boyfriends, because the "good guys" just don't feel like real love. This is a very common situation, and I have a blog post on it! ("Why do I keep choosing abusive men?"). Normal EMDR, through the use of the Flash Technique (I have a blog post on this as well) can reduce the "impact" of the memory so that it is not disturbing to work with, and can transform beliefs so much that the client is better off then if they had never been traumatized in the first place.
More importantly, "normal EMDR" is capable of dealing with what are probably the worst traumatic memories--those that are "high toxicity," but not disturbing. Imagine massive roots without a tree. EMDR 2.0 and every other trauma therapy for that matter leaves such memories untouched. However, the beliefs clients are chained to by memories such as chronic humiliation or emotional neglect, are so hurtful that the client dissociated from these memories' emotional content, simply for survival. Normal EMDR is able to produce radical change, just as described in the paragraph above. EMDR in this respect is entirely unique as a therapy. "Depth therapies" like psychoanalysis and ego-state therapy can heal these wounds, but can take a number of years to do what EMDR can do in 1 or 2 hour-long sessions.
So, in conclusion, EMDR 2.0 has some amazing uses, as just another tool in my toolkit, and it is a very useful one. Here are just a few examples:
-Preventing client dropout by providing instant results (getting clients "hooked on healing")
-Rapidly healing memories so disturbing that they are entirely resistant to any other treatment
-Appealing to certain populations (military, especially)
-Quickly reducing stress on addicts in danger of relapse
-Providing relief from overwhelming intrusions and anxiety, so that the "deeper work" can be done without distraction
-Working with those memories from which there is no real belief involved--things that just need to "go"!
-Clients report increased self-esteem, that the therapy was "done by them."
-Quick relief from basic negative self-beliefs that have to do with 1) inappropriate attribution of responsibility ("it was my fault"), 2) feelings that things will never change or will happen again, and 3) a sense of powerlessness.
*If you are hurting and need fast results, perhaps EMDR 2.0 is right for you. Give me a call at 615-598-7587, and we can set something up.