Hey – I’m about to ask you a trick question so you better get it right :-)

Has your adolescent come home and complained about anything recently?

Yes? No kidding. I used to think this was a part of growing up- the constant struggles, insecurities, conflict and hormones. Hold your breath and wait for it to be over.

But then a few years ago, I met a girl who changed my outlook. She was 17 years old, and she had this ease. She seemed more mature than most parents I meet!

I was really surprised. I had to find out how this happened. I met her mother and asked how her daughter had come to be so centered, and the mother answered back, “EMDR.” I remembered hearing about that in college but it always sounded too weird to me. I started to think that maybe this was something I should look into.

When I got home, I googled it and ended up reading for 2 days straight about EMDR. I talked with Dr. Ron Furst who has treated countless patients with EMDR and he swears by it.

Before I explain to you what it is and how it works, picture this:

  • Imagine that every time your child came home from school and said “I don’t fit in,” it was replaced with I’m glad I am the way I am.”
  • Imagine that every time your child had a rough game, instead of saying “I’m a failure,” he or she believed “I am smart.”
  • Instead of coming home from a friend’s house and saying “I’m not good enough,” your child truly felt like “I am capable.”

I know it sounds crazy. But wouldn’t that bring tears to your eyes? To see that type of growth and display of self development in an adolescent seems impossible. But I found out, rather quickly, that it’s absolutely possible. It can change your child’s entire life and it can inspire you and your family in the process.

Ok, enough fluff. EMDR is essentially rewiring the brain in order to get rid connections between bad experiences in the past, and automatic emotional responses in the present. By recounting traumatic events, regulating emotion and reprocessing the problem, we’re able to coax the brain into effectively dropping the association between past event, and present emotional reactions and negative beliefs about yourself.

In other words – can you think back to an event where you were embarrassed, taken advantage of or hurt? Do you find your adrenaline pumping or heart racing, just from recounting the experience? EMDR effectively prevents that from happening again. Sounds crazy enough that it just might work, right? It does work.

Not only is it backed by a ton of research- it’s also recommended by the American Psychiatric Association, World Health Organization, and even the US Department of Defense!

Not only does EMDR help you get over past trauma, it works for all kinds of things that are holding your child back. Fear of public speaking, insecurity around making new friends, trouble working in groups, poor test taking, anxiety about getting into college. Most roadblocks like that stem from negatives beliefs about yourself and are the product of past experiences. By getting to the bottom of these beliefs and rewiring the way our emotions are tied, we can overcome the block and help achieve success.

What are your child’s biggest goals? What could be accomplished if he or she wasn’t scared anymore?

If you knew there was a way to enhance success for your child- wouldn’t you support it?

Yes, that was another trick question.

I have a special connection with adolescents ages 14-24 who feel out of place. I want to help as many as possible overcome their fears and achieve their wildest dreams. I wish I had this when I was 16 instead of waiting until I was 24. I’ve had EMDR therapy myself and achieved awesome results that I will be forever grateful for.

I don’t want you to wish there was more you could have done as a parent.

So, if this sounds like something you’d like your child to try, or if you’d like a little more information on EMDR, simply email me at elizabeth@LATeenTherapist.com.  Leave me your phone number and I’ll call you back as soon as I can :-)

Talk to you soon,

Elizabeth