There’s something very very wrong with me…. other than the obvious that is. Yesterday then psych at the Pain Clinic had a go at trying to help me with the traffic phobia/PSTD resultant from my recent accident. The technique is called EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) and from what I understand it is a process/treatment intended to help you reprocess traumatic events into your logical memory somehow and allow you to no longer respond to them emotively or physiologically. Sounded pretty good in theory, but the psych I’ve been seeing had ruled it out for me as she ‘felt that someone of my personality was unlikely to respond to EMDR’… whatever that means.
So I spent an hour with the Pain Clinic psych and she had me concentrate on each of my car accidents several times over while having me watch her move her hand rapidly left to right in front of my eyes. Firstly I had to ‘play them through in my mind’ and ‘access the memory’, then again to try recall further details, and again to try to recall and relive the feelings, emotions and even physical sensations of those accidents. Apparently most people experience very distressing reactions to this…. but not me.
I could remember all the accidents perfectly, and recalled tiny details I’d forgotten, but when asked to convey what I felt throughout the process, I was calm, articulate and perfectly rational. I didn’t have any reaction to ‘reliving’ the accidents and certainly no emotional distress or physiological responses. The psych seemed sort of disappointed that I didn’t react like I was supposed to.
During one of the replaying efforts of my second accident, I even caught myself smiling as I remembered that my Dad had arrived before the ambulance and found me laying on the road, badly winded and not in a good way… and I was swearing like a trooper about the complete ineptitude of the prick that had run into us. But my Dad for the first time ever didn’t reprimand his daughter for using foul language – Dad liked his daughters to conduct themselves like dignified young ladies – which caused me to smile a little wryly at the recollection of his being rather more understanding and rather less remonstrative than normal.
Judging by the psych’s reaction – that isn’t supposed to happen. She seems to think that I’ve developed some sort of defensive dis-associative tendency that doesn’t allow me to access the emotions and physical reactions that the accidents should cause. Shrug…. Personally I think that maybe I’m just ordinarily too pragmatic and grounded to be freaking out in her safe little office and am therefore recalling the episodes factually rather than emotionally.
Who knows? Either way it didn’t work… and I’ve still been unable to drive and having issues with traffic.