A theoretical analysis of the psychodynamic dimension of cognitions in the eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) protocol can be beneficial in addressing the specific issues affecting the choice of appropriate cognitions in working with clients with personality disorders. This group of patients share the biographic commonality of emotional-narcissistic abuse and neglect in childhood by primary attachment figures and significant others in their lives. Arising from these experiences, a subtle dissociation (in childhood) can cause the development of parts of self with an emotional and cognitive fixation on a self-image. This is defined by the child’s attachment figures and other significant people, and has subsequently been internalized by the child themselves. In such cases, the actual goal of treatment is not primarily the event on which the EMDR session is initially focused, but rather the complex emotional and cognitive significance that the event has on the client’s self-perception and self-evaluation.
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Copyright © 2011 EMDR International Association
Egli-Bernd, H. (2011). EMDR in Dissociative Processes Within the Framework of Personality Disorders: The Impact of Cognitions in the EMDR Process: The “Dialogue Protocol”. Journal of EMDR Practice and Research, 5(3), 131–139. https://doi.org/10.1891/1933-3184.108.40.206
Journal of EMDR Practice and Research