Having recently attended a 4 day emersion training on AEDP , I have now developed, and integrated, elements of the AEDP way of working into my own therapeutic way of being .
AEDP has at the forefront , the relationship between the therapist and the client . The therapist guides the client to stay with the emotions they are feeling . The process is slowed down and defences are observed .
The therapist monitors and contains the negative affects and affirms the client . The therapist is guided by using their intuition; the energetic connection in the space between client and therapist; and by tracking signs of changes within the client and themselves.
Positive affects can then emerge. Once again , these are slowed down and the client can enter into a deep state of appreciation for whom they are, recognising their own qualities and realising the beauty of their own defences , as strategies that enabled them to survive . The client thus has a transformative moment , which enables them to move from survival to thriving .
This therapy is very much based on attachment theory and attempts to heal those earliest of ruptures . The therapist attunes to the client, as the parent would to a child . In this way , the focus shifts from a ‘There and Then’ experience to a ‘Here and Now’ one.
The therapist must ensure that the client feels safe and contained , and is therefore, very open to feedback from the client as to how, they themselves, are perceived by the client. It requires a willingness to be open and honest by both the therapist and client. Establishing trust is an essential element of working in this way , as powerful emotions emerge and greater authenticity develops .
It is very much about undoing aloneness . People often feel that they are very alone with their thoughts; feel very different to other people; that they don’t fit in or belong anywhere ; and that no one really understands or gets them . They can feel isolated , even when in the company of other people .
When someone feels seen, heard, valued , and had even those parts of themselves, that they don’t like or understand, accepted by another .. self loathing can be transformed into self appreciate , and the capacity for self love is developed .