EMDR

Terry McGeehan, MA, LCPC   EMDR Therapy, Supervision & Consultation  410-218-0656   terry@sageriverwellness.com

EMDR, Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing, is an evidence-based psychotherapy that rapidly and effectively treats a number of psychological disturbances including PTSD, childhood trauma (complex ptsd), anxiety, depression and addictions – both behavioral and substance use. The model on which EMDR is based, Adaptive Information Processing (AIP), posits that much of psychopathology is due to the maladaptive or incomplete processing of adverse and traumatic life experiences.

Adverse experiences are stored in the body/mind as fragmented or un-processed memories that impair and interfere with a the ability to function at one’s best.  For example, overreacting to a supervisor at work, may be the result of an earlier adverse life experience with a parent. Essentially, the past is intruding on the present. The reaction may feel out of control, because it is. The supervisor has triggered unprocessed memories that are fueling an unconscious reaction to a parent, rather than a conscious response to the supervisor. The reaction may be to avoid or accommodate, it may be to defend with anger or implode when arriving home. Over time a gradual shutting down can lead to becoming less vital and depressed. While these reactions may have been adaptive while growing up, they are probably not the best option now. A maladaptive pattern of behavior driven by intrusions from the past can become a habit. Habits impede the ability to be consciously present to the moment, they can damage relationships and as in the case of addiction, take on a life of their own. The result is increasing alienation and isolation, feeling disconnected from oneself, close relationships and the world.

EMDR uses dual attention stimulation (DAS), focusing on the safe present while also attending to the difficult past with alternating eye movements or hand tapping to provide bilateral stimulation. DAS engages both sides of the body and stimulates associations among related memory fragments.  This activates the adaptive information processing system moving the unprocessed fragments to fully process into current day safety, knowledge and experience. The result is a true resolution and integration of the past which alleviates physical, emotional and psychological symptoms and distress in the present. Adaptive behaviors and insight replace maladaptive behaviors and limiting beliefs, improving self-esteem, confidence and the ability to choose wisely. EMDR facilitates adaptive processing of life experiences enhancing stability, resilience and competence while feeling present and alive. 

Terry McGeehan, MA, LCPC   EMDR Therapy, Supervision & Consultation  
410-218-0656   
terry@sageriverwellness.com 

Terry, principal and founder of Sage River Wellness, is a licensed clinical counselor and family mediator with over 30 years professional experience. Her style has been described as innovative but practical. She works with clients to develop healthier ways of coping with life and to create more satisfying relationships. A non-judgmental, trusting relationship is essential. Terry uses a holistic approach to join the wisdom of the body, insight, client resources and live interaction to transform dysfunction, dis-ease and conflict into conscious compassionate living.

Clients learn to recognize and live from their ‘true center” or “authentic self” where they can respond rather than react to life stress while sustaining inner peace and compassionate presence. Experiential learning and educational materials provide the basis for lasting change.

The services Terry provides include EMDR therapy and consultation, counseling for adults, families, couples and family mediation.  Areas of treatment include trauma recovery, emotional regulation, grieving & letting go, managing anxiety, depression, dissociation and addictions recovery; both behavioral; eating disorders, gambling, porn & substance use; smoking, alcohol, drugs.  Relationship therapy involves developing mutual respect, creating a shared space for understanding differences, prioritizing concerns, improving communication, conflict resolution skills, keeping love alive and refining commitment. Methods include EMDR, Ego State Integration, Body centered or Somatic Therapy, Mindfulness, Cognitive Behavior Therapy, Acceptance Commitment Therapy and Humor. The work of therapy becomes the joy and satisfaction of living.