How to Find an EMDR Therapist

emdr-therapist-directory-maibergerSince I teach EMDR Therapy, I often get asked for referrals for EMDR therapists. I found that trying to connect the right client with the right therapist was a little challenging since different therapists have a variety of specialties and work in different areas. With this in mind, I launched the EMDR Therapist Directory to help streamline this process for clients.

When looking through the EMDR Therapist Directory, you can search for different things to help you find the right therapist for you. First you can search by name of city or state, or you can search by the type of things you are interested in discussing with your therapist: trauma, PTSD, family, etc. You can also search by your zip code to see what therapists are closest to you.

You can also look at the qualifications of the therapist in terms of their EMDR experience through whether where they completed their EMDR training, whether they are Certified, or have become a Consultant. There are different levels that EMDR therapists may acquire:

  • EMDR Trained Therapists are state licensed clinician who has completed a standard EMDR Training or Remote EMDR Training program (50 hours). In some cases, the clinician might have completed EMDR Training while working under supervision of state licensed mental health clinician while completing a Master’s degree in mental health and working towards state licensure in mental health.
  • Certified EMDR Therapists are state licensed mental health clinicians that have completed EMDR Training/Remote EMDR Training, has worked with at least 30 clients using EMDR therapy for trauma/PTSD, received consultation from a Certified EMDR Consultant, and continue to participate in EMDR therapy education so they stay current in the field.
  • Certified EMDR Consultants are state licensed mental health clinicians that were trained in EMDR therapy, became a Certified EMDR Therapist, received consultation from a Certified EMDR Facilitator, and continue to participate in EMDR therapy education so that they stay current in the field. Certified EMDR Consultants consult EMDR trained therapists, and EMDR Certification Candidates.

emdr-therapist-directory-family-maibergerI believe that it’s important to interview at least two or three therapists, so you can get a sense of how you feel with that person.

Research has consistently shown that one of the greatest factors in successful therapy of any kind is the relationship between therapist and client. When you see a prospective therapist for the first time, notice how you feel when you are with him or her. How do you feel in the space, and about how the therapists present themselves?

It’s important for you to get some sense of how this person can help you with trauma symptoms, such as emotions that feel overwhelming or behaviors that are sabotaging your goals. Make sure to ask questions even if you feel nervous meeting this person for the first time.

Below are some questions from my book “EMDR Essentials: A Guide for Clients and Therapist” you can ask to interview the therapist.

  • Do you offer a free consultation so I can meet with you to see if EMDR Therapy is right for me?
  • What is your level of training as an EMDR therapist?
  • What is your background and training? Are you licensed?
  • Have you ever worked with my issue (eg. rape, depression, anxiety, auto accident, racism, homophobia, trauma related to identity, etc) and had success with EMDR therapy?
  • How much EMDR therapy do you practice on a regular basis?
  • How long have you been practicing EMDR therapy?
  • What will our EMDR therapy session look like?
  • What do you charge for an EMDR therapy session?
  • How long are EMDR therapy sessions?

Take a moment after the interview and sit quietly and ask yourself:

  • How do I feel?
  • Do I have a good feeling about our meeting?

Remember there are no right answers to these questions. Listen to your gut.

I hope that the new EMDR Therapist Directory will help you find an EMDR therapist who can help you feel better by resolving issues in your past, helping you feel more present now, and more resilient in your future.