I first became introduced to EMDR in 1993. It was a new treatment which I had heard of and had heard it was helpful with trauma. EMDR apparently was fairly new at that time and had some issues with it, such as people being triggered after session and staying in a heightened state of arousal between sessions. This was my experience, even though it did seem to help me work through my issues quickly, the agitation I felt between sessions made me stop this treatment. While getting my Master's Degree in Social Work, several professors had talked about EMDR in 2002 stating it was a good treatment, but it did not have a lot of credibility still at this point. I was interested in using this treatment/technique but also had heard it was expensive and not proven through research to help trauma any more than standard talk therapy.
When I started New Dawn Counseling, LLC, I was wanting to help our military with serious severe PTSD symptoms and the holistic treatment I was doing at that time in 2008 was unacceptable for using with military and former military personnel. I started looking into taking EMDR training at that time because I was informed by an officer of the military I could use EMDR with their approval. In 2009, there was training closer to where I live and more affordable then it had been for a while. I signed up to take the first weekend to learn this treatment. During our first or second day of training, a trainer came into the room stating the military had just approved EMDR as an acceptable and approved method of treatment for the military. The APA had also deemed EMDR as the number one treatment for trauma and stress. This was great news! I was on the right track to helping others, especially our military. The EMDR Institute no longer calls a clinician who has completed both weekends of training a certified EMDR clinician, it is now called a Certificate of Completion of Weekend 1 & 2. I completed all the requirements to have this certificate in 2010. Once I became fully trained in EMDR Basic, it allows me to take more trainings to further using this technique, which is now a full treatment modality. I have also received special training with children in the art of psychotherapy and attachment with emotional dysregulation issues. A part of this special training with children, means I am trained in PCIT (Parent Child Interaction Therapy). I have found this to be very useful with Autism Spectrum Disordered children and their parents. I can use the technique while using PCIT in a play therapy session with the parent present. I have seen an increase in skills and decrease in dysregulation in these kids after a few months of therapy. I use the full 8-phase model of EMDR, which is what an approved clinician is supposed to do. It is important when looking for an EMDR clinician to ask how many phases they use. If the clinician doesn't state 8, they are not fully trained in the process. This is advice given during training with the EMDR Institute.