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Open Access Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing in Counseling a Male Couple

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Abstract:

This practice-based article discusses the use of eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) in counseling “Paul” and “Eddie” (aliases), a couple for 4 years who presented with what they identified as “communication problems.” Through the use of psychosocial assessments of the men's personal histories, it was determined that Paul's experience of feeling controlled and Eddie's struggles to believe that he mattered in the relationship were linked to traumatic memories in each man's childhood that related to his sexual identity development. EMDR was used to target the men's traumatic memories, alternating between Paul and Eddie. Following each EMDR treatment series, the work was integrated by talking through how the reprocessed material integrated into the overall couple experience, leading to both men's increased satisfaction in the relationship.

Keywords: COUPLES COUNSELING; EYE MOVEMENT DESENSITIZATION AND REPROCESSING (EMDR); GAY; SEXUAL ABUSE

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1891/1933-3196.5.3.111

Publication date: August 1, 2011

More about this publication?
  • 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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