Death of a loved one is universally distressing. The stressful conditions of COVID-19 can compound the trauma of a loss. Consequently, the mourner has to deal with: (a) the loss of a loved one; (b) potential complications of grief and mourning caused by COVID-19 (e.g., sudden and unexpected death, a loved one’s suffering, inability to be physically present to offer comfort or say good-bye, social distancing interfering with funeral and religious ceremonies); and (c) personal disruption caused by COVID-19 (e.g., disruption of employment and daily living routines, fears related to safety and uncertainty). Further, grief can be complicated by prior unresolved losses and trauma, including attachment-based trauma, which would also need to be identified and treated. This article presents a framework for treatment of grief and mourning with eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) therapy. EMDR treatment, guided by the Adaptive Information Processing model, can be informed by other frameworks, including attachment theory and the Dual Process Model, which are described. A case example is presented to illustrate treatment of a client whose father died due to COVID-19.
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Copyright © 2020 EMDR International Association
Solomon, R. M., & Hensley, B. J. (2020). EMDR Therapy Treatment of Grief and Mourning in Times of COVID-19 (Coronavirus). Journal of EMDR Practice and Research, 14(3), 162–174. https://doi.org/10.1891/EMDR-D-20-00031
Journal of EMDR Practice and Research