Rosemary DeFrancisci, LMFT, PLLC

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What is EMDR?

Aug 24 2012 Published by under Uncategorized

There are many benefits to using EMDR in therapy. EMDR stands for:  Eye Movement Dsensitization Reprocessing.

EMDR is a therapy that was first developed by Francine Shapiro, PhD.  in the 1980’s to help Vietnam Veterans experiencing symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress. It has been well researched and shown to be an effective therapy for many people.


EMDR therapy involves looking at how past events or experiences influence negative beliefs individuals may have about themselves. These negative beliefs cause automatic thoughts, behavior and physical distress that can keep people in emotional pain (fear, anger, shame, sadness, guilt). Sometimes the memories of past experience are traumatic and easily known and sometimes they are ordinary experiences from the past that continue to carry a negative charge for one reason or another.  When a negative experience goes unprocessed, the memory of it is stored in the brain in a way that maintains the original intensity of emotion, thought (belief), image and sensations associated with it.  EMDR therapy is used to access these events and facilitate new and healthier ways to understand and experience them.  The goal is to make new connections to the experiences that are more adaptive and accurate with who you really are today. Often clients will come in and say “I know this isn’t really true (I’m not worthwhile, something bad will happen, I’m a terrible person, etc) but I still feel this way”.  EMDR therapy can help.


For more information, please visit the international association’s website:  There are numerous books available as well. Francine Shapiro’s latest book on EMDR is : Getting Past Your Past: Take Control of Your Life with Self-Help Techniques from EMDR Therapy.

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