Edward Brendler, Psy.D., is a 2017 graduate of the PsyD Program in Clinical Psychology at Antioch University, Seattle

Dissertation Committee

William Heusler, Psy.D., Committee Chair

Dana Waters, Psy.D., Committee Member

Kelly K. Brown, Ph.D., Committee Member

Document Type


Publication Date



Helping clients develop resources and stability required to tolerate reprocessing memories can be a considerable part of psychotherapy, particularly with clients who are suffering symptoms related to complex developmental trauma or cumulative multiple-event trauma. There is a paucity of research regarding how experienced EMDR Therapy practitioners experience helping their clients to develop resources required to tolerate reprocessing of trauma memories. This dissertation is an in-depth study of five participants, each a licensed mental health practitioner in the State of Washington, who are trained in EMDR and experienced working with clients who are suffering symptoms of trauma. Each participant was interviewed and the interviews were analyzed using Interpretive Phenomenal Analysis. Four primary themes were identified: Therapist Experience, Trauma Conceptualization, Stabilization, and All these Tools. Each participant described their experience in the context of their own motivators, their own conceptualization of what their clients were experiencing, and their understandings of what worked in helping their clients to stabilize throughout the process of therapy. Participants acknowledged the significant role that EMDR Therapy training had in shaping both their understanding and treatment of trauma. They also described the complexity of working with traumatized clients and the importance of common factors, such as relationship, trust, and safety in their work. This dissertation is available in open access at AURA, and Ohio Link ETD Center,


Edward Brendler, Psy.D., 2017

ORCID Scholar # 0000-0002-5163-6928