Thoughts From A Psychotherapist

I thought I was over this

I heard those words today.  I hear them often from clients.  Usually the front part of the sentence is I am such and such age and I can’t believe this still affects me.

There is much research to show that trauma affects our brains.  One summary of multiple studies shows permanent affects on both emotion and memory.   We think of childhood experiences as something in the past.  However, many of the stories I hear are horrible and yet clients still feel they should just be over it.  Many clients have moved forward in their lives to great success and one of their coping mechanisms is their strength.  However, in order to succeed clients push these unwanted memories into the unconscious.  Trauma doesn’t just allow itself to be pushed aside so easily.  It is stored in both the brain and the body.  As a result of the repression of feelings many clients develop problems with depression and anxiety.  Until the underlying trauma is addressed, in most cases, the current symptoms won’t abate.

The good news is there are ways to resolve trauma.  I am trained in EMDR which is one of the most researched treatment of PTSD.  By stimulating both the left and right brain you can reprocess trauma so that it no longer has the affect on you it did.  That eliminates the PTSD or anxiety and depressive symptoms.  For more information on EMDR please see www.emdr.com.

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