Adjunctive EMDR: A model for brief collaborative treatment


Non-EMDR-trained clinicians sometimes ask if “a little EMDR” might help some of their clients. When painful feelings about a single incident continue to intrude or interfere with otherwise productive psychotherapy, a short trial of EMDR may indeed resolve the impasse. By narrowly targeting specific traumatic memories or intrusive material, adjunctive EMDR can accelerate progress in traditional therapy, help the client and the primary therapist to clarify stuck points, and enrich the ongoing work.

This workshop will describe a model of brief adjunctive EMDR consultation, a focused application of the EMDR standard protocol, provided by the EMDR consultant to clients in collaboration with their referring therapist. In this model, adjunctive EMDR does not replace or interrupt ongoing therapy. It is complementary to the primary therapy relationship. It is brief, usually comprised of three to twelve sessions.

The workshop will include guidelines for identifying appropriate referrals and for maintaining a collaborative stance with referring therapists. Ethical issues will be addressed, and potential pitfalls will be discussed. Small group activities and handouts will guide participants in implementation of the model.






Suzanne S. Borstein

Original Work Citation

Borstein, S. S. (2011, April). Adjunctive EMDR: A model for brief collaborative treatment. Presentation at the 7th Western Mass EMDRIA Regional Network Spring Conference, Amherst, MA



“Adjunctive EMDR: A model for brief collaborative treatment,” Francine Shapiro Library, accessed December 8, 2021,

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