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Open Access Change in Adult Attachment Status Following Treatment With EMDR: Three Case Studies

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Three case studies illustrate pre– and post–eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) adult attachment status as measured by the Adult Attachment Interview (AAI). Two adult males and one adult female presented for outpatient therapy; all of them were categorized with an insecure or disorganized attachment status at pretreatment. All presented with symptoms of depression and anxiety and complaints regarding problems in their current marital and family relationships. The three patients received 10 to 15 EMDR sessions over the course of approximately 1 year, interspersed with talk therapy sessions for the purpose of debriefing and psychoeducation. The EMDR approach utilized all eight phases of treatment within the three-pronged approach. Following EMDR therapy, all three patients made positive changes in attachment status as measured by the AAI, and all three reported positive changes in emotions and relationships. This article provides an overview of the literature related to adult attachment categories and summarizes the effect of adult attachment status on emotional and social functioning. The rationale and scoring procedures for the AAI are explained.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2009-08-01

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  • The Journal of EMDR Practice and Research is a quarterly, peer-reviewed publication devoted to integrative, state-of-the-art papers about Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing. It is a broadly conceived interdisciplinary journal that stimulates and communicates research and theory about EMDR, and their application to clinical practice.
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