EMDR Therapy in the Media
It is exciting to see EMDR Therapy used in television, movies, and the media. As a therapist who loves providing EMDR Therapy, it means EMDR is going to reach a lot more people and hopefully, that means more healing. This is a good thing!
EMDR Therapy was depicted on the shows Travelers, Russian Doll, and most recently Grey's Anatomy. The episode in Grey's Anatomy spends an entire episode on the character, Jo's, trauma and her process with EMDR. In my opinion, they did a great job showing the use of the light bar and experiencing emotions, memories and cognitions. The photo I added to the bottom of this page shows her holding the buzzers and watching the lightbar. I was impressed with their depiction of her trauma journey and the use of current treatment modalities for trauma recovery and her childhood PTSD.
The scenes show the desensitizing phase of EMDR, where the therapist and client process the trauma. EMDR Therapy doesn't always start here, it takes prep work to get into traumatic memories. What they didn't show is EMDR based grounding skills such as calm place and creating resources. Resourcing and grounding skills probably wouldn't make "great" TV, so it makes sense that they jump into the deep trauma work.
If you are interested in watching Grey’s Anatomy’s “Breathe Again” episode, Season 6, Episode 5 - October 24th, 2019 on ABC and if you wait, it will probably end up on Netflix.