EMDR Therapy - what's your experience?



My actively using husband has decided to try EMDR Therapy to try to kick his addiction, start healing his past emotional wounds, and gain the self-esteem, confidence, and motivation he once had. I am extremely proud of him for taking this step. I am curious, has anyone else or their addicted loved one gone through this? Pros and cons? How can I support him through this?


I haven’t heard of this type of therapy before now. How has it been going for your loved one? What are your thoughts on this route if therapy?


@Awlee090, how did your husband find EMDR and why did he decide to try it? I have heard of it and know someone who has used it for help with past life trauma. It seems woo-woo but also supported by science. I’d be interested to know how it goes and when it is recommended.


He still hasn’t started it. He is dragging his feet and I am so disappointed.


Actually, EMDR therapy is something my son is getting now in his inpatient rehab, along with equine therapy & a men’s weekend - all designed to help address unresolved trauma. He described the EMDR - very tough, as it forces the person back into very traumatic events and they relive them as the therapist helps their body to process those experiences in a different way. My son was evaluated & placed into a group that included veterans suffering from PTSD. It seems like it could be helpful (too soon to know).


My 18 year old daughter has been doing EMDR with her psychologist as she has a skin picking compulsion. She has explained the EMDR process to me and I think it’s incredibly brave for anyone to choose to relive those moments of trauma, be they big or small. I have to admit to feeling slightly skeptical, as you pointed out @Julie_Smith it all seems a bit woo-woo (:slightly_smiling_face:) but I believe it is becoming more common and has been scientifically proven to help. I’m sorry your partner has slowed down on his motivation to try EMDR @Awlee090, I can relate to that feeling of disappointment when progress is halted despite the initial best intentions/agreements.


I have done EMDR personally to deal with my trauma, which is extensive. It was quite scary for me in the beginning. You need someone you really trust and time beforehand to build a relationship with. It has changed me so much although I am always a work in progress. Now when I think of past traumas I remember them but I don’t physically feel them in my body. Racing heart, sick in my stomach. I don’t feel like running away. Now from having extensive EMDR it is easier for me to notice what is happening in my body and to recognize where emotions are stemming from that are not related to immediate situation. My sons counselor at Therapeutic Boarding School recommended it and I will be forever grateful that I don’t have to carry this weight around. It is incredibly important that once a topic is opened up it is dealt with or it could be devastating to the person beyond imagination. Once you get going it is not scary anymore. I can’t stress enough how much the right person is critical. But that was for me and big trauma, a lesser trauma and a different person might not have the same experience. I think the biggest thing is that if the person is not ready to really, REALLY commit to the work then they should wait. If they are ready then EMDR is truly incredible in being able to heal your soul and move forward with your life.