AREAS OF EXPERTISE
EMDR, or Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, is an evidence-based therapy with over 20 years of research demonstrating its effectiveness in healing traumatic memories.
EMDR incorporates elements of Cognitive Therapy, mind-body awareness, various relaxation techniques, and guided imagery. Before beginning work on any particular trauma memories, the client is asked to work with the therapist to develop resources, such as a “a Calm Place,” to learn to calm the body’s response to triggers to past trauma. The therapist then guides the client through processing old memories, using eye movements, tapping, or hand-held buzzers to activate the brain to access the memory.
Eventually memories which created high levels of distress no longer create disturbance, and become integrated into the client’s other memories and experiences in a healthy and useful way. This often creates feelings of healing, and hopefulness for the future.
Over time, EMDR has become my primary therapeutic modality, and ongoing research recognizes EMDR as effective in alleviating symptoms of anxiety, phobias, depression, as well as Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD.
For additional information, please visit www.emdr.com, and www.emdria.org. These are two websites which include research information, additional descriptions and uses of EMDR therapy, and a search engine to locate a therapist near you.
I have a special interest in working with adults with what was previously named Asperger’s Syndrome (now under the umbrella diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder, or ASD).
In 2000, our 10-year-old daughter was diagnosed with Asperger’s. As a result of this, I understand the stress of parenting a child with this diagnosis, as well as the skills necessary to transition from high school or college to independent adulthood. I can also be helpful with providing supportive therapy, and perhaps EMDR therapy, to address past and present struggles with employment, friendships, family relationships, social interactions generally, and anxiety and depression that can be secondary to this diagnosis. We will explore your strengths and gifts, and work to help to support you as you move toward independence.
My experience in this area comes from the many, many trainings I attended after our daughter was diagnosed. In addition, during graduate school, I was a Fellow at the UConn Health Center, as part of a multi-disciplinary group of (mainly doctoral) students. The Fellowship was part of a national grant focused on developing leaders in the field of neurodevelopmental disorders. The Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disorders (LEND) fellowship was a yearlong training, involving extensive weekly readings, lectures by some of the state’s and country’s foremost experts in the field, on-site visits, culminating in a final research project. My research focused on students attending college with reported diagnoses of Asperger’s Syndrome, supportive services provided to these students, and accompanying outcomes.
Life can certainly throw us a curve ball! Whether you are transitioning to a new job, entering retirement, experiencing the loss of a loved one, or beginning a new phase of education or career, life can be stressful. Relationships can also enter transitions, as we become new parents, or empty-nesters after years of focus on raising children. Transitioning from being a student, to becoming a working adult, can also be a very stressful time in our lives.
If any of these sound like you, we will develop a treatment plan together to help you to manage the stress of transitions in our lives, as well as explore any underlying issues which may be affecting you.
Anxiety and depression can affect us all in the many ebbs and flows of life. Most of us experience some level of anxiety and/or depression as we move through life, and many of us may benefit from therapy, to help us to manage these difficult emotions.
We may also experience physical symptoms of these emotions such as restlessness, insomnia or sleeping too much, trouble “getting going,” nausea, muscle tension, or irritability.
You may struggle to relax, to cope in positive ways, or to express yourself assertively. You may find yourself struggling to cope in healthy ways, or searching for that elusive “inner peace.”
Or, your emotional and physical symptoms may be affecting your relationships, school or work.
We can work together to sort through these struggles, explore new strategies to cope, and if desired, to heal the roots of the symptoms, in order to feel more empowered, and more at peace in your body, mind, and spirit.