A single-case design implementing eye-movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) with an ex-cult member
This single-case study utilized a repeated-measures design with an ex-Jehovah’s Witness who was treated with EMDR over a two-month period. A brief background history and mental status, particularly relevant to a 37-year old female who was “disfellowshipped” by her entire support network and family after 28 years, served as a baseline for treatment. Symptoms relevant to the Post-Cult Trauma Syndrome, as defined by M. Thaler Singer (1979), are addressed via the Validity of Cognitions Scale (VOC) and the Subjective Units of Distress Scale (SUDS) used by practitioners of EMDR. In addition, the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and the Impact of Event Scale (IES) were implemented to further validate intervention results. All measures revealed significant improvement in symptoms following this brief, short-term treatment. Despite the fact EMDR is touted as one of the most effective interventions for trauma-related disorders, there are virtually no empirically based studies that explore the application of this type of therapy with individuals traumatized by cults. It is concluded that EMDR might serve as a standard therapeutic intervention in the treatment of individuals exiting from cults. Ramifications for future research are discussed.
Original Work Citation
DeYoung, R. R. (2009, July). A single-case design implementing eye-movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) with an ex-cult member. Presentation at the International Cultic Studies Association Conference, Geneva, Switzerland
“A single-case design implementing eye-movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) with an ex-cult member,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed December 3, 2020, https://emdria.omeka.net/items/show/19429.