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Old 05-29-2007, 10:37 AM #1
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Default Trauma Work

Can trauma work be done in regular psychotherpay? If so, what can you do with a regular therapist? My T keeps asking me if I'm ready to do it, but she keeps suggesting EMDR and I wonder why.. I thought I was in therapy to resolve stuff. Why do I need to go elsewhere?
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Old 05-29-2007, 11:24 AM #2
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Default Re: Trauma Work

Yes it most certainly can, I am living proof.
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Old 05-29-2007, 12:57 PM #3
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Default Re: Trauma Work

Hi Esther,

I sometimes wonder if there is truly such a thing as "regular" psychotherapy. I am just beginning to realize this myself after reading many posts at PC. It seems that each therapist brings his/her own personal toolbox to the table and uses those tools to benefit the client.

It appears that in your T's case, EMDR is one of her tools. It has been effective for many people. My experience with it is limited as I wasn't really ready for it yet, so T tabled it for the time being.

I'm a little confused about your statement regarding going elsewhere. Is she suggesting someone else do the EMDR? Or do you mean outside the usual "talk therapy" you and T usually engage in?

I hope I haven't confused you more!

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Old 05-29-2007, 01:27 PM #4
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Default Re: Trauma Work

yes, she does not do emdr. so its not something she would do. I would do it in addition to therapy.
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Old 05-29-2007, 01:46 PM #5
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Tell her that you'll do EMDR as soon as she gets certified in doing it! Trauma Work

She may also mean doing both - using the EMDR to create a "safe place", and to make the work less upsetting.....so you two can process the events without it becoming too overwhelming.

em
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Old 05-29-2007, 05:17 PM #6
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Default Re: Trauma Work

Hi EV,

I have two T's..one regular psychotherapy, the other a Trauma Specialist, certified in multiple trauma modalities.

My regular T we do work on relationships, my day to day functioning, but Trauma T helps with the deeper wounds and coping mechanisms..

Best of Luck EV...
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Old 05-30-2007, 03:46 AM #7
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Default Re: Trauma Work

> Can trauma work be done in regular psychotherpay?

yes, it can.

> If so, what can you do with a regular therapist?

there are different strategies... i've been reading a lot about trauma work lately. at the place to do trauma work now and i wanted to know what i was getting myself into. seems that trauma processing in talk therapy is about talking about some of those experiences in an emotionally connected way. so not just narrating what happened in a cool detached manner but actually feeling some of those feelings too. some therapists approach the past via transference (so there needs to be transference and transference interpretation in light of narrative and emotional connection to the past) others don't approach the past via transference. depends a lot on the therapists theoretical orientation.

> she keeps suggesting EMDR and I wonder why..

i don't know. could you ask her? does she mean for the EMDR to suppliment your therapy or does she mean to reccommend that you process your trauma with an EMDR therapist? one thing i'm wondering... is that she might not consider herself a trauma specialist / she might not be prepared to do trauma work. some therapists don't. for their own personal reasons.

trauma work... takes a therapist who is fairly emotionally healthy. able to feel all the feelings of shame of disgust of anger of hopelessness of helplessness... to allow you to feel those feelings... and to be able to put them away at the end of the day so that one doesn't burn oneself out. some therapists simply can't identify with those feelings because they need to employ their own dissociative defences to protect against their past traumas. while they may be very effective therapists for some other disorders they tend to be perceived as cold uncaring and aloof when they try and do trauma work. some therapists overidentify with those feelings so they can't soothe us because they need soothing themselves. or they can't allow us to feel them because they can't tolerate them themselves. while they may be very effective therapists for some other disorders they tend to burn out trying to do trauma work.

i've had so very many people try and do therapy with me when it was apparent to me that they were not in the place to be able to do that with me. believe me, you don't want to try and do it with someone who isn't confident that they can help you with that because it will just %#@&#! you up worse (recapitulate those traumas thus compounding them, basically).

could you ask her why?
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