EMDR therapy can be a powerful therapeutic tool and support for resolving grief. Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), is known as an effective therapy for trauma/PTSD, but it is also applicable to any life issue like grief, where we are overwhelmed by emotions and may be triggered into painful thoughts and destructive behavior patterns.
Dealing with grief and loss can bring up issues from the past and reinforce old negative beliefs about ourselves and life in general. There are stages of grief and we can can stuck in them like anger or denial. It can be a long process before we can accept the loss and absorb what it means for our lives.
As a certified EMDR therapist, I have used EMDR therapy with clients to help them process through traumatic images of loved ones in final stages of illness and death. EMDR therapy can be helpful for people who are heartbroken over the loss of a love relationship and struggling to move on and make sense of that loss. It can also be healing in the grief about work, job or career losses which can deeply affect self-esteem and be quite traumatic.
The integrative power of EMDR therapy can be healing for grief as it works to honor all components of a situation – body sensations ( especially strong in grieving), emotional feelings ( sadness, anger, fear and depression) and negative cognitions about ourselves that can distort and even perpetuate grief ( “It’s all my fault”, I’ll never get over this”). EMDR therapy used in a compassionate and skillful way can facilitate moving through such painful events and integrating them into the fabric of our lives bringing more inner peace and wholeness.