There is currently consensus that the EMDR standard protocol needs to be modified for repeatedly traumatized clients, such as clients with complex postraumatic and dissociative disorders, as it may destabilize them. Therefore, therapists need to understand the dissociative personality structures that exist in these clients, as well as their needs and capabilities during treatment, including EMDR procedures.
Participants will become acquainted with the key concepts of structural dissociation of the personality and their implications for diagnosis and phase-oriented treatment, including EMDR therapy. This involves ways of relating dissociative symptoms to the underlying dissociation of the personality; recognizing dissociative interferences to therapeutic progress, identifying targets such as the dissociation-maintaining phobias and working with dissociative parts and their interrelationships. In all this the role of EMDR interventions during the respective treatment phases will be highlighted.
Participants will be able to:
- Understand trauma-related dissociation as, primarily, an integrative failure and, secondarily, as a coping strategy or defense
- Understand how different dissociative parts are mediated by daily life action systems (ANPs) and those mediated by defense action systems, stuck in trauma-time (EPs)
- Identify positive and negative, psychoform and somatoform dissociative symptoms
- Understand how various phobias maintain the dissociation of the personality and, within the context of phase-oriented treatment, constitute targets for therapeutic interventions
- Regard problems and symptoms of dissociative clients from a systems perspective