How EMDR Helps You Heal From Forgotten Trauma
If we’re trying to heal from trauma, we’ve likely heard of EMDR. EMDR stands for Eye-Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. We don’t always process our memories properly, especially when the memories themselves are traumatic. When we don’t process them correctly, those memories and that trauma can stay with us for a long time. EMDR helps us take those memories and process them properly so that we can heal from the trauma they caused us.
It can be easy to assume that this means EMDR only works when we remember our traumatic memories perfectly. But that’s not the case at all. EMDR can help us work through hazy memories. On occasion, it can even bring out related traumas we were not aware of at all. This might seem a little unbelievable if we don’t know much about EMDR and how it works, so let’s find out more.
How EMDR Works
EMDR involves a lot of different things. It’s important to know what trauma we want to address, and it’s also important to learn some techniques to help us cope when we’re out in the world, living our lives. In order to reprocess the traumatic memories that are interfering with our day-to-day life, we need to focus on the memory while moving our eyes back and forth. That’s where the “Eye-Movement” part of EMDR comes from. This helps our brain process the chosen memory, and it’s something that’s repeated as much as necessary. Sometimes, different sets of related memories can show up, traumatic or not. These can be addressed during the sessions as well.
It doesn’t really matter how clearly we remember the memory that caused us trauma. Having a vague idea of what happened or how we felt when it happened is more than enough to begin the process. This is because EMDR focuses on how we experience that memory in the present and not how we experienced the event at the time. We’re trying to process a traumatic memory, and whatever we remember is enough for the process to work.
Still, there are usually prompts that we’re given that can help us remember certain details better. If that doesn’t help us remember, that’s okay too. Our therapist will be prepared for that eventuality. At most, it means the process will take a little longer than usual. But it’ll still work.
Sometimes, working through some traumatic memories can suddenly make us remember other traumatic memories we may have forgotten about. That’s because EMDR works a lot with associations at times, and if two of our traumatic memories are related, they are likely to come up during the process.
While dealing with two memories simultaneously is not recommended, nothing stops us from processing one memory and then working on processing the other. EMDR can help us discover any forgotten traumas we may have, and it will give us the opportunity to process and heal from those as well.
Find a Therapist
Finding the right therapist can be difficult, but if we think EMDR can help us heal from our trauma, then it’s worth it. EMDR is very different from traditional talking therapy, and that may seem daunting at first. But the truth is: there’s nothing to fear. EMDR has a lot of research supporting its efficiency, and it’s highly recommended to people trying to heal from trauma.
If EMDR is something you want to go for, if you think it’s the right kind of treatment for you, then make an appointment with us. We’ll make sure you get the help you need.