Lessons in Relational Justice, I

By Juozas Šalna from Vilnius, Lithuania (Flickr) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

What is Relational Justice?

I just watched Michael Moore’s (2016) film, Where to Invade Next. It’s all about Relational Justice. In the two-hour movie, Moore visits eight countries to steal good ideas and bring them back to the U.S. He also raises some questions that have been with me all day.

  • What caused our country to be so anxious?
  • And what effect does our country’s anxiety have on me personally?
  • How did we get to be a nation that denies each other basic humanity? Basic food, shelter, clothing, healthcare, and education?
  • Why do we hide from our sins (e.g., slavery) and gloss over them in the teaching of history?
  • When I consider these questions about the nation to which I belong, what does it mean about me?

If you disagree with my beginning premises, that’s okay, just allow the mental exercise. I don’t have all the answers here, but I have guesses and I’d love your thoughts.

In the movie, Michael steals:

  • Healthcare for All!
  • Let Children be Children!
  • Stop Punishing (and Start Treating) Drug Abusers!
  • Paid Vacation for All!

 

By Jos Dielis (Évora Uploaded by tm) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Michael also steals this idea:

LOVE EACH OTHER.

How would our use of antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications, prescription pain medications, heroin, and methamphetamine be different if we truly loved people? How would our relationship to government change if we believed in relational justice? What would our business practices be if we lifted people up? How much would we pay the minimum wage worker? What would our diets and school menus look like if we believed everyone deserves love, health, and happiness?

I believe this kind of love means Relational Justice, acts of kindness that communicate a high value on human (and potentially, all) life.

  • How would relational justice improve our parenting?
  • How could relational justice reduce our fears of aging?
  • What would happen if we took better care of each other?

 Relational Justice = Love

Social justice sounds lofty and unattainable, but it begins with Relational Justice. Relational Justice means loving our neighbor. The Golden Rule. Practicing Love. Giving. Promoting People’s Happiness. Relational Justice takes an attitude like Jesus, like Nelson Mandela, like Michael Moore. Relational Justice means you feel it personally when your neighbor has nowhere to sleep tonight. You (I) can’t sleep if they can’t eat. We feel it when they suffer. We want their happiness as much as we want our own.

PS: Love, happiness, and world peace are all topics for EMDR therapy.

Contact Deborah

Ready to Receive: A Valentine’s Mindset

I just learned something: getting more of what we want happens when we shift into the right mindset to receive . . . Receiving Mode. We want intimacy, creativity, close friendships, satisfying work, a healthy family . . . a healthy community, nation, and world. Receiving Mode allows us to draw the right people, situations, and energy to us, creating the opportunities and relationships that ring all our bells and generate happiness all around us. Life is chock full of miracles and love.

I sort of knew this part. But I forgot, in the heart-stomping of this historical moment.

Here’s what I just learned: we practice Receiving Mode by getting a scalp massage. When we spend time in Receiving Mode, doing easy, our feet in the grass – our faces to the sunshine, we get ready to receive. As we get ready, those happy outcomes, love, beauty, friends, and even money, flow naturally toward us.

So in honor of St. Valentine, patron saint of happy couples, I make a new kind of to-do list, to get us ready to receive love.

  1. Get a pedicure (doing this right now).
  2. Go outside and breathe.
  3. Meditate 10 minutes before bedtime.
  4. Walk for pleasure in a beautiful place.
  5. Sit with our furry friends.
  6. Get some EMDR therapy.
  7. Do nothing. Stretch. Do more of nothing.
  8. Stare at the moon and know it’s a personal gift.
  9. Do a little yoga.
  10. Get out the watercolors and mix a new shade.
  11. Close our eyes and listen to Mendelssohn.
  12. Make a list of our favorite people.

Get ready to receive your heart’s desire. Even if you can’t see it now. Get ready. It’s coming. You are loved. Happy Valentine’s Day.

Contact Deborah

Political Despair? Focus on the Journey.

lucabarberini.com

You’re safe. I’m writing to you: my Republican and Democrat and Independent friends . . . my companions on this journey. A series of conversations yesterday made me realize: We’re all stressed by the changes . . . yes, all of us.

If you lean to the right . . . you see masses protesting and feel disgust. Why do those people think they’re better than us?

If you lean to the left . . . you think, this cannot be! Does my voice matter? I need a martini. Let’s move to Banff.

You have trouble sleeping; your anger and hopelessness spike in public or when you watch the news. You watch your words. You have trouble tearing yourself away from social media. Waves of worry or despair get worse after dark. You lose friends.

If you have brown skin, it feels ten times worse. Your presence here is threatened (and threatening). You worry about being surveilled. You feel iolation and terror.

So, what I want to say is this: all the current events, all the devastation and disgust . . . none of it is real. Manipulation makes us fear each other. We’re not actually on different teams.

What IS real? The journey itself. The spiritual, relational space between us. How we treat each other. The rest is hologram, a stage set designed with challenges to grow us into maturity, if we stay awake to how we love.

A writer friend shared this poem with me today:

You have been telling the people,
That this is the eleventh hour.
Now, you must go and tell the people,
That THIS is the hour,
And there are things to be considered.

Where are you living? What are you doing?
What are your relationships?
Are you in the right relationship?
Where is your water?
Know your garden …

It is time to speak your truth.
Create your community,
Be good to each other.
Do not look outside yourself for a leader.

There is a river flowing now very fast,
It is so great and swift.
That there are those who will be afraid,
They will try to hold onto the shore.
They will feel they are being pulled apart,
And will suffer greatly.

Understand that the river knows its destination,
The elders say we must let go of the shore.
Push off into the middle of the river,
Keep our eyes open and our heads above water.

And I say; see who is in there with you,
Hold fast to them and celebrate!

At this time in history,
We are to take nothing personally.
Least of all, ourselves!
For the moment we do,
Our spiritual growth and journey comes to an end.
The time of the Lone Wolf is over!

Gather yourselves!
Banish the word ‘struggle’ from your attitude and vocabulary.
All that we do now must be done,
In a sacred manner and in celebration.

We are all about to go on a journey,
We are the ones we have been waiting for!

-Thomas Banyacya Sr. (1910-1999);
Speaker of the Wolf, Fox and Coyote Clan
Elder of the Hopi Nation

Contact me if you’re interested in a support group to deal with this leg of our journey.

Contact Deborah

Notice Body-Mind Connections and Heal from Trauma

Bone Flowers Deck, Luca Barberini, 2010, http://lucabarberini.com/en/home

Bone Flowers Deck, Luca Barberini, 2010, http://lucabarberini.com/en/home

I used to fall a lot. On the sidewalk. In my yard. Up a flight of marble stairs. About seven years ago, after a string of bizarre falls where I ended up with scars on my shins and a pulled muscle in my back, I followed the trail of breadcrumbs and made a body-mind connection. It went like this.

  1. I have contact with a mean or narcissistic person.
  2. I feel “off balance.”
  3. I trip on my own feet or a tree root or a rock in the driveway and land on my hip or my hands.
  4. I hurt myself and also feel humiliated.
  5. I immediately recall the bullying individual from #1.

At first, when I told my doctor about this, I felt sheepish. I didn’t want to blame my clumsiness on someone else (and I didn’t want her to think I’d had a stroke). But as I told my story, I caught sight of my patient me, as if through my doctor’s eyes, apologizing for the link I’d made between mean people and my having accidents. I thought of other patients in her office, recalling what they’d eaten or where they’d been just before a medical event, and I started to feel some compassion for myself. She’s not a shrink, but my doctor understands how our emotional and medical lives intertwine. I am a shrink, and I’ll tell you, they are one and the same.

Luca Barberini, 2015

Portrait from Photo, Luca Barberini, 2015

 

Maybe it’s okay to notice the weird connections between things. Not just the physical things, but the emotional things too.

“But I don’t want to be unfair.”

I get it. But there’s a difference between blame and etiology. Just because you track the origins of your anxiety or your over-drinking doesn’t mean you need restitution from the person(s) involved.

Or maybe you do. But that’s another conversation…

Maybe you’re afraid to see how your panic attacks started in a relationship. But it’s just human and normal and natural to want to UNDERSTAND. How did I get here? What is my body telling me?

As distinguished traumatologist, Bessel van der Kolk, writes in his book, “The Body Keeps the Score,” trauma disrupts our ability to notice what we feel in our bodies – yet this interoceptive awareness is the first step in becoming more able to stay safe and meet our physical and emotional needs.

So I want to remind you  . . . it’s okay to notice meanness or boneheadedness or emotional invasion. It’s okay to notice how hearing a particular teacher or minister or political figure gives you a nauseated chill. It doesn’t make you petty or shallow to see how contact with your mother leads to a migraine or makes you sluggish or gives you erectile dysfunction. It doesn’t make you a whiner to notice you feel lonely and you crave sugar after a conversation with a certain friend. Noticing means you’re awake. It means you can detect traces of a trauma (past or present). Not-noticing means you’re in some way asleep to your experience.

So as long as you’re awake . . . I invite you to notice. Take inventory of your strange symptoms. Notice any pain or discomfort or numbness in your body. See if you can trace it back in time. Notice the picture in your mind. Write about it. Then, read about how EMDR can help you clarify the connections between things, and get resolution on bad experiences you’ve had.

Contact Deborah Read Wife Material

 

Relationship Disconnect: How it affects our health.

Relationship disconnection is trauma.

Relationship Disconnection is Trauma.

Everyone I love needs to read these four books.

  1. The Birth of Pleasure, Carol Gilligan
  2. The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron
  3. Proof of Heaven, Eben Alexander
  4. How Connections Heal, Maureen Walker & Wendy Rosen (Eds.)

These books have all changed my life. But today, I want to focus on #4. How Connections Heal is written for therapist-types, but it explains the basic nitty-gritty about relationships and should be required reading for every high school senior and should be in every hotel nightstand drawer and every dentist’s lobby. I think it’s that important.

It’s about Relational-Cultural Theory (RCT), which posits that when we have mutually-affirming connections, we feel understood and valued. We thrive and get more creative and do our best work. We feel energy and excitement. We take better care of ourselves.

But when our relationships (even just one of them, if it’s important) make us feel diminished or one-down, when we lack equal power and voice……we suffer. We become depleted, depressed. We feel lost, lonely, bloated, unattractive, unstable, dull, unwanted, and out-of-touch. We eat and drink too much, shop too much, stare into our devices and stop looking forward to things. We feel unliked and unlovable. We wear gray and withdraw from social life. We doubt our sanity.

Relationship Disconnection Is Trauma. Here’s a story of non-mutuality (disconnection) in a friendship.

Sabine and Rachel’s friendship changed suddenly, and Sabine was confused. Rachel seemed distant and stopped returning calls. Sabine felt her friend pull away, but when she asked about it, Rachel waved her off and said, “Nothing’s wrong. I’ve just been super busy.” Then the distance got even worse over the course of six months and Sabine found herself excluded from gatherings of Rachel and their other friends. She felt abandoned and ashamed with no idea how to address the obvious rift in their connection. She thought, it must be my fault. She wondered, how do I feel so hurt when Rachel obviously feels nothing? Sabine got sick. First, a bronchitis that hung on for two months. Then, shingles. When she came to see me, she was having panic attacks and thoughts of suicide.

condemned isolation

Condemned Isolation Is Trauma.

Disconnection and non-mutuality happen in marriages and work relationships and families. If I (like Sabine) consistently share more, express more vulnerability, reach out more, make myself more available, I will probably, at some point, feel bewildered and blame myself for being needy. If my feelings or perceptions are brushed off or laughed off, I will start to lose essential energy: an emotional hemorrhage that I can feel in my body. In RCT terms, this is Condemned Isolation and it causes us to doubt our essential worth in the world.

Condemned Isolation Is Trauma.

If this pattern sounds familiar, you may have traumatic disconnection in your relationships. Your body responds to condemned isolation like it responds to a physical assault. Contact me if you’d like to talk more about how to bring mutuality back into a relationship – or how to recover from this type of trauma and rebuild your confidence and zest for life.

Zombies in Relationship: Identify Feelings and Come Out of the Trance

Zombies in Relationship Trance

Come out of Trance and De-Zombify Yourself

Several months ago, I wrote about dissociation, or being tranced-out. Trance feels like confusion or sleepiness and it blocks our energy in relationships. Trance envelopes us when we can’t make sense of the mixed information we’re receiving inside our relational space. It paralyzes us into inaction.

Am I crazy?

Am I paranoid?

Did I imagine that?

Remember the old movie, Gaslight? The woman being gas-lighted in the movie had a stress-induced psychotic break as she tried to manage all the mixed information being fed to her. Her husband systematically invalidated all her suspicions and emotions…leaving her to doubt her very reality. A trance-induction. Most people don’t induce trance intentionally, but the effects of mixed signals/information can still turn us into zombies.

Is he hearing me?

Is she there for me?

Am I worthy of relationship?

Trance-induction happens when someone claims to love you but keeps a major part of their humanity out of the relationship. This sounds like:

Of course I love you. Why would you even doubt…., or

This is for your own good…, or

I have no idea what you’re talking about.

You’re just sensitive because of what happened when you were growing up.

You don’t really know [what you think, feel].

Expression that mismatches a moment. Words that throw us off. Behavior that seems opposite the professed love, or just a blank look that belies the trouble you know is there. Mixed signals shake the I-Thou of relationship like tornadic winds uprooting trees.

Zombification comes from the stress of mixed signals. Mixed signals create an information vacuum that sucks up energy as we try to sort out what is really meant or how the person really feels or if we’ve been left emotionally abandoned or if we’re really crazy.

When we’re mystified by someone important to us, we dissociate, or slip into a trance. And trance leaves us vulnerable to accidents, depression, lost information, and lost moments. If you feel like a zombie, you may be in trance – and there’s probably a relationship trigger to it.

Steps to Demystify Yourself and Come Out of Trance

  1. Practice being angry. Pretend you feel angry and whack a mattress with a tennis racquet. Do this for 30 seconds while yelling obscenities at someone (who isn’t there). Stop and breathe. What do you notice?
  2. Make a list of everything confusing in your current relationship (whether this is a love relationship or a family relationship or a friendship). Write a scene involving your anger at someone. Writing Wife Material helped me take hold of some highly confusing childhood signals and sharpen my sense of what was real. It helped me break out of trance.
  3. When you start feeling sluggish or tranced-out, focus on your five senses. Hold a rock and feel its texture and temperature. Go outside and touch the grass. Breathe. Keep your eyes moving. Write down what you see, hear, taste, and smell.
  4. Think about the relationship troubling you and walk briskly. After 20 minutes, stop and jot down your thoughts/feelings.
  5. Tell your partner (or family member) how you feel when they invalidate you. Hold on to your reality. Breathe. Remember it’s okay to feel like something isn’t quite right, even if someone says you don’t know what you’re talking about.

Remember, you have the right to your reality, even if someone else says you’re imagining things. Let me know if you’d like to talk about trance and de-zombification.

Contact Deborah Read Wife Material

 

A Conversation about I and Thou

Remember the last time you worked a concession stand? You wore your team’s t-shirt and took money and gave out candy bars? Remember how odd it felt when people handed you their dollar bills without any eye contact? Like you’re the generic concession-stand-worker-dad/mom-body-who-distributes-Pepsi-and-doesn’t-exist-when-I-walk-away?

Sometimes I feel like a thing, instead of a person.

A woman.

A daughter.

A therapist.

A middle-aged mom.

I become an object. This happens when I’m with someone who sees my exterior role but can’t hear the specifics of who I am. Someone who expects me to do a certain thing (like show up and smile) but who has no concept of my individual life, with its stress and goals and complexities.

This is objectification. We all do it, pretty much all the time.

I had a conversation recently with my husband, Dr. Joe Hulgus, about when we feel like objects in the eyes of others.

Me: So, you think objectification relates to our global economic problems and terrorism?

Joe: Yes. Every day, we hear about bombings, mass shootings, and other obvious violence – as well as the less obvious forms (like rampant porn addiction, drug addiction, and poor behavior by our top politicians). People blame these tragedies on “craziness,” “mental illness,” “stupidity,” or “poor parenting.”

But I think all sorts of bad behavior are rooted in how we interact on a daily basis.

Martin Buber (1878 – 1965), a theologian, wrote that we relate to each other in one of two ways:

I/Thou…and, I/It.

In the I/Thou relationship, according to Buber, the boundaries between you and another person recede into the background and you experience true communion.   Like a state of oneness.

Me: Buber believed we have to meld into each other in order to have true connection?

Joe: Sort of. A deep empathy at least. Looking at that person pan-handling at the stoplight and feeling a softness, as if that could be me. That is me. Because, on some level, that is all of us.

The other way of relating, according to Buber, is the “I/It.” I/It objectifies.  We turn the thing encountered into an image that serves the purpose of being used or experienced or ignored by us.

When we turn someone into an IT…a hot guy, a fat person, a Muslim, an atheist, an old lady; this objectification frees us to use them in any way we see fit to meet our own needs, without regard to the well being of that person or dog or tree.  For instance, we wouldn’t worry about the feelings of an orange as we peel and eat it. It’s just an orange. I/It allows us to treat people, animals, plants, the earth…as commodities, without distinct worth or value outside of what they can do for “I.”

Me: What happens when we get turned into ITs inside our relationships?

Joe: We feel it. We get depressed. We experience a drop in energy. We may pull away – or we may try desperately to engage in a different way, to convince the other person we’re real.

Me: When I feel myself being objectified or commodified, I get tired and slip into brain fog. I leave the scenario with a vague sense of hopelessness.

I imagine that person pan-handling by the road feels herself being ITted. I admire her for standing there all day being turned into an object for scorn and pity.

Joe: Yes. So, imagine this happening on a global level. How are these micro-interactions shaping our world?

Me: And our parenting? Children get treated as commodities all the time. Like they can be assaulted and not take it as brutality.

Joe: Yes. We feel this. And we respond by feeling disenfranchised, angry, hopeless.

Me: Instead of deeply connected to every living thing. Whoa… (lapse into deep thought). I need to sleep on this. You have such a good brain.

Joe: That’s why you married me. For my brain.

 

TO BE CONTINUED…

Contact me if you’d like to talk about objectification in your life.

Contact Deborah

 

 

Snap out of Trance and De-Zombie-fy (I & Thou, part 2)

De-Trance and De-Zombie-fy

De-Trance and De-Zombie-fy

I’ve been watching people turn into zombies all week in couples therapy. One woman said, I shut myself down so I won’t have to strangle him! Trance-induction is complicated. It robs us of moments, but it helps us avoid feelings we don’t want to have. And sometimes it keeps us from committing homicide.

Why do we turn into zombies?

I take the issue back to my favorite consultant, Dr. Joe Hulgus, for some help with the words.

Me: It’s the zombie apocalypse. And I’m starting to suspect that all the zombies I’ve seen lately feel confused by their partners. Like they feel themselves being turned from a person to an IT. So they become less human. Does that make sense? How can I explain this?

Joe: It’s an emotional shift. Maybe we start feeling like a child as our partner talks down to us. Maybe we feel like we’re just the housekeeper or the employee or the paycheck or the person who raises the kids. Maybe we feel like a pair of boobs or a walking erection – like we have no other value. It’s like someone building an imaginary wall between them and us and we can’t reach them anymore.

Me: Or if I say, It’s all in your imagination…I’m not upset…or You know I love you…

Joe: Yes, at that moment, we’re no longer relating as two equal people. You’re trying to hide yourself from me. You’re treating me like an It. Like I’m not capable of perceiving reality on my own.

Me: I may be treating myself like an It too. Like, I don’t feel anything, so you shouldn’t either.

Joe: And I stand there confused, lonely, and desperate. I get two messages that don’t match, like I love you but don’t touch me. It makes me feel crazy.

Me: And you go into trance.

Joe: Yes, I become dissociated, without realizing I’ve slipped away. All of this happens unconsciously for all concerned. It’s under the surface of things, which is why it’s so powerful.

Me: If we can call it out, we stop ourselves from zombification?

Joe: I think so. But imagine the energy it takes to see what’s happening in your close relationship and then having the courage to say, Wait! Something doesn’t make sense. Something doesn’t feel right.

Me: It takes anger.

Joe: Maybe.

Me: No, really. The deep, inner anger at being gas-lighted.

Joe: Our parents or partners probably had no idea they were gas-lighting us.

Me: I know! It doesn’t matter. The effects are still there and I have to go WTF!!! I don’t understand because you’re not letting me!

Joe: Okay. Can you do that without being angry?

Me: I can’t. Without access to my anger, I’m a zombie.

Joe: I will try to remember that.

De-Trance and De-Zombie-fy

I-It or the It-It relationships allow all kinds of bad things to happen. This is where abuse happens. This is where relationships fall apart. This is where we get depressed. This is where we get distracted and have accidents and crave ice cream and pie and get locked in self-destructive cycles and feel all alone in the world. This is where we take it out on someone innocent. This is where we lose our humanity.

This is where wars and genocides begin.

Yikes.

But we can do something different. Let’s just start here. The antidote to zombification = the identification of our feelings. Especially anger. Emotion is the music of our attachment to each other.

Try this exercise and let me know how it works for you.

  1. Get a pen and notebook.Write a short scene where you turn into an emotional zombie, zoned-out, tranced-out, numb. You can make this up or write something completely factual.
  2. Describe everything going on around you. What do you notice?
  3. Add cartoon thought-bubbles and insert words (e.g., Does she think I’m a complete idiot?).
  4. In the scene, who would you most like to strangle? Why?
  5. Add dialogue (e.g., I would like to strangle you right now because…).
Contact Deborah

No Judgment Here: 10 Things I Love about Group Fitness

 

No Judgment Here

No Judgment Here

No Judgment…but lots of Very Cool Surprises.

Group fitness bears a huge resemblance to group therapy. Who knew? I did not. But doing group fitness at The Bodysmith has changed my life and now I can’t stop talking about it. It helps me recover more quickly from setbacks. It places my fitness in a social context. It allows me to hear from lots of other people about their normal struggles – things we worry about in common and things we’re celebrating or learning to let go or accept: aging, illness, our kids…We come from different backgrounds and generations and occupations, but we share so much, including our desire to be fitter and more conscious human beings.

I LOVE…

  1. That everybody has a different shape.
  2. Burpees: Now I can do twelve of them without stopping.
  3. Mutual soreness.
  4. That I see how we all fluctuate through our lives: leaner, fatter, more and less swollen, depending upon how stressed we’ve been lately. No need to worry about it. I can allow myself to be human and inconsistent. In this way, I’m just like everybody else.
  5. Getting stronger and being able to lift things I couldn’t before.
  6. My friends holding me accountable to come to class.
  7. Learning not to judge myself or compare myself to others. Learning this doesn’t help or matter to the forward movement of my life.
  8. That everybody knows my name there (think neighborhood pub, only without the beer).
  9. That I feel connected to my community: I learn what’s going on around me from people who go to different concerts and read different books.
  10. I bounce back more easily from those weeks of bad food or bad self esteem. It’s never the end of the world.

I’m starting to think group fitness IS group therapy. I’m starting to think you might get more bang from your buck by joining a Pilates class than by doing a traditional talk-support group (not that those aren’t great). I’m starting to see there’s no real separation between body and mind. I’m starting to get that recovery from trauma has to be part muscle, part blood vessel, part neuron, part emotion, and part imagination.

Call me if you’re curious about how fitness and trauma recovery go hand-in-hand. Or talk to anyone at The Bodysmith to learn how you can start this part of your healing.

Contact Deborah

Investment in Healing: Why Pay for Therapy?

Why it makes sense to pay for good therapy.

Invest in your emotional development: Become more of who you were meant to be.

Hello, I think I need some therapy…..

How much does it cost? When can I expect to feel better?…….

Will I need therapy for a year? Three years?…….

Why won’t you take my insurance?…………

Investment in my health????? 

We call in distress, needing help now. Yet, we worry about the time and expense of therapy and feel discouraged at the vision of being on the therapist’s couch for the rest of our natural lives.

I can’t afford this.

I’m tired of being lonely and depressed, but I can’t leave work for a therapy appointment.

My husband doesn’t want me to spend the money…………

Sometimes, the idea of shelling out over a hundred dollars to talk seems ridiculous. I know – I’ve been there too. Even if you feel worthless and alone in the world, it’s hard to imagine that investment in your emotional health could lead to a different way of life. But let’s look at that money in the context of going to see your family doctor, which you’d probably do if you had a headache that wouldn’t go away.

  1. A typical doctor’s office visit costs anywhere between forty and three-hundred dollars. For this money, you get perhaps 20 minutes of your physician’s time. You might get to ask your list of questions and you might get a diagnosis or prescription. But you will probably not get an hour of face-to-face exploration of who you are with a person who is trained to listen for clues to your emotional and relational life. (The exception to this might be my own doctor, who does listen and ask good questions for 30 to 45 minutes.)
  2. You take off work to go see your doctor. You probably leave the appointment with an answer (yes or no) to the question, Am I dying? But you will probably not begin to feel better just yet – nor will you have a deeper sense that you are SANE, WORTHY, and connected to the universe. Your behavior will most likely remain unchanged (except, perhaps, for taking your medicine).
  3. For an investment of $170, the average in that range, you can have a top of the line running shoe, which will last between six and ten months. That shoe will cost you more than most therapy sessions. And if you go ahead and buy a good EMDR therapy session, you will most likely net permanent change to your neural networks that promotes more effective thinking and a calmer body.
  4. With the investment of under $300, for a few good EMDR therapy sessions, you should have the following.
    • A working partnership with someone who’s focused on really getting you.
    • Some new resources for calming your nervous system and thinking with more clarity and less stress, less negative self-perception and noise.
    • And…..a beginning understanding of what’s been blocking your path to achievement or satisfying relationships.

I start almost every EMDR therapy relationship with resourcing – building new thoughts, feelings, and images that literally change your brain. I start this process in our very first meeting, so even if you only see me once, we begin tapping in those supports that bolster your forward movement.

EMDR therapy usually takes more than two sessions for the typical adult with anxiety or depression. I work with your schedule as much as possible. According to our local data, most people feel significantly better within six sessions. And no, I don’t take much insurance anymore. For about a dozen reasons. We make more progress when we pay for the service.

Check it out. Do some reading. And contact me if you’d like to learn more.

Contact Deborah