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EMDR for Schizophrenia and Other Psychoses Paperback – 30 Oct 2015
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About the Author
Paul William Miller, MD DMH MRCPsych is a senior Psychiatrist trained in General Adult & Old Age Psychiatry; a member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists. Having trained in Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) under Roger Solomon (1997) he was accredited as an EMDR Consultant from 2001, he is also an EMDR Institute Facilitator.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
One image Miller used a lot was that of the wizard in the wizard of Oz: instead of paying so much attention to the appearance the wizard is trying to create, he suggests we instead need something like the little dog Toto that sniffs out the “man behind the curtain” which is where the real action is.
In this case, the entity behind the curtain is problematic “memory networks” which also manifest as “ego states” that are related to trauma and difficult experiences.
Miller shares lots of examples of how he helps people with diverse psychotic experiences using EMDR, with some adaptations for psychosis. His approach zeroes in on the disturbing emotions or affect related to the experiences and the related memory networks, and then he helps people process this in their own way so that it becomes less disturbing.
He describes giving people drugs alongside therapy, but often deliberately reduced amounts of drugs (consistent with the notion that he relays that one must “feel in order to heal.”) And he clearly talks about cases of completely successful treatment where all drugs were then discontinued.
He doesn’t frame the eye movement thing itself as being especially magical – he frames it at one point as a kind of “helpful noise” that just facilitates the processing.
Anyway, this book could be worth checking out for yourself, or suggesting to others, especially if you or those you know sometimes practice EMDR, or just want to get familiar with how psychosis can be an understandable reaction to difficult experiences and how a therapy to address that can possibly help people fully recover!
I bought this book expecting a protocol to treat schizophrenia sufferers, and it is not what the author presents us. He introduces a way of viewing psychosis, interpret it, “react” to it. More like embrace it and let it act out its role.
What I didn’t enjoy much is the extensive review of the EMDR theory and AIP model. In my humble opinion, anyone who doesn’t already understand most of that, shouldn’t be reading this book at all. It felt like an overkilling, over-extensive introduction. Quite boring sometimes.
Albeit the critic above, I think it is a very good resource, and I finally feel confidente I have a pathway to work EMDR with my Psychosis suffering patients.