Sunday, 1 June 2008

1st EMDR Session

I have been saying for a while that i can going to try an EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing) session. So here are a few facts quickly.

Key Benefits

  • EMDR often resolves emotional distrubances and trauma where other therapies have failed.
  • EMDR is effective for most anxiety based disorders.
  • EMDR should not be confused with hypnotherapy. EMDR is a client led therapy and always remains within the control of the client
  • EMDR is capable of rapid results

I found this description - EMDR® is a new psychotherapy used to treat troubling symptoms, such as anxiety, guilt, anger, depression, panic, sleep disturbance, and flashbacks that are the result of traumatic experiences. Traditional therapies have met with limited success in treating victims of trauma. Not only has EMDR therapy been proven effective in reducing the chronic symptoms which follow trauma, the therapy benefits appear to be permanent. Since Dr. Shapiro's first published research study in 1989, EMDR ® has developed and evolved through the contributions of therapists and researchers all over the world. It now incorporates elements from many different treatment approaches. To date, it has helped an estimated half million people of all ages receive relief from many different kinds of psychological distress.

Ok so thats the basics. I was told about it in a far simpler form. You are asked to focus on what you would like 'healed' and as your body goes through different sensations you have to move your eyes to follow someones movements... usually a hand moving back and forth, sometimes the therapist uses a tapping maching.

Anyway on Friday i met with Alison and i was to decide whether i wanted to try the EMDR or go a walk. I have heard huge praise regarding EMDR and knew i wanteds to try it as soon as possible. It was a nice sunny day so we got comfortable in the garden and made a start. I told Alison i wanted to work on my general anxiety. I want to eliminate the daily fear of having a panic attack. So i was axked various questions, told to imagine various things and we got to work. In tha past i have tried therapies where you are told to imagine a situation that has made you panic. I can imagine the situation but i never experience the body sensations much to the therapists disappointment. I have even been asked to think of situations that would scare me, for example, travelling outside of my comfort zone. Once again i can picture these things but my body doesnt usually react unless i am actually IN that situation.

Anyway the session began and in my head i was focusing simple on the words panic, anxiety, fear etc whilst moving my eyes. Very quickly i noticed my body changing. I had gone from relaxed and happy to extremely uptight and uncomfortable. My palms began to sweat and my stomach churned. We stopped every minute or so and i was asked to explain who i wasd feeling. 'Go with that' Alison would say, and so we would continue. My hands began to sweat, My heart pouding, i became very dizzy and suddenly had the urge to vomit, yet we continued. Alison had always told me that these sessions are completely in my control and that any client can say stop if it gets too much. But i continuted as the sensations took over me and soon i experienced extreme depresonalization and felt utterly disconnected from everything. While this was happening i was so hypersentitive, the trees were blowing, people were walking past, my neighbours were pottering around in there gardens and it all got a bit much. I told her to stop!

I was desperate for it to end. I knew it was onviously working as no other therapy has made me feel anything like that before. Alison then helped me to relax with a few excerises and soon i was back to normal. She explained that this reaction is normal. I dont want to put anyone of in anyway but it has been known for people to cry , or vomit, during sessions. Our brains are processing all the supressed memoried and processing all our phobias. So i guess its understandable that its not very pleasant. Alison said though that the best thing to do is ride it out. Stay with the therapy and soon the sensations get less and less and when they have stopped completely you then move onto the important part of the process... the 'cure'.

I was disappointed that i said stop but the whole time in my head i was thinking 'this is too awful and how long do i have to do this'! i wanted it to be over. I had spoken to a girl in the past who had to stop her session as she said it had been too intense and now i can totally sympathise with her.

I have arranged my 2nd session and that is for this Tuesday. This time i am going to do it in the comfort of my bedroom, with the blinds drawn, with as little to stimulate me as possible. I hope i can ride it out. To be honest i dont know if i will, but even if i have to say stop again i will try and try again as i really think this could work, it was just so powerful!

So ill see how it goes on Tuesday. Please dont let this post have put anyone off, it wasnt all bad, the relaxation exercises are great and i felt totally fine within minutes. I think its a therapy that take guts to face, but one that could maybe the the answer for many of us.

Also i wanted to give people this link. Its for Paul McKennas web page. A women who emails me told me about it and i am so grateful, so thank you so much Christine. I havent yet bought it but i have heard a lot of praise for Paul McKenna so i would say its definatly worth a try.

http://www.paulmckenna.com/default.aspx?pid=5

Ill report back after Tuesday lol x

1 comments:

The Monkeyman said...

I had my first session today and like yours it was pretty intense. The thing I personally found with the intense moments of panic is that they actually subsided quite quickly. After finishing I certainly felt a bit away with the fairies, it's very powerful stuff. It's without doubt the most difficult and strenuous treatment I've ever had but I think it's going to be very good for me- already things are coming to the fore that appear to be underlying the basis of my anxiety that I had no idea actually affected me in such a profound way (although now it all makes a lot more sense!)

Good luck with your future sessions, I'm sure it will help and don't put too much pressure on yourself as its stressful enough digging through your memories without adding anticipatory anxiety into the mix.