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What Is AEDP? Accelerated Experiential Dynamic Psychotherapy

AEDP works through creating a container of emotional and psychic safety that invites and even provokes a deep experience of being connected to ones self and the self of another. The therapist in the practice of AEDP engages an authenticity and vividness of self-expression that invokes a field of safety and interest, which in turn invites and ushers in experiences of heightened emotional presence within the patient. The patient’s deepened emotional experience and expression, then brings in turn, a heightened permeability and awareness within the therapist. What had been held off in the distance within the patient becomes vitally experience-near in each evolving moment to both the therapist and the patient.

David Mars, San Francisco, CA

In AEDP reflexive defenses originating deep in the brain of the patient are brought to conscious awareness. Long-standing blocks and walls against felt experience soften into states of emotional flow that lead to relief and heightened clarity and freedom to initiate corrective action in the lived life of the patient. The AEDP therapist advocates and encourages the clear formation of the patient’s corrective impulses, often in the form of imagery of how to apply new behavior in the patient’s current life or in revisiting past situations of helpless aloneness, overt trauma or deprivation. Like a volcano whose eruption creates new land in the ocean, the patient’s unconscious surprises and recognizes itself in AEDP, so the patient’s agency and inner authority take hold and gain freedom to live in new and remarkably stable and resilient ways.

Ben Lipton, New York, NY

AEDP is a psychotherapeutic approach based on the idea that deep, viscerally felt affective experiences have the inherent capacity to rapidly and comprehensively transform people. Facilitated through a relationship with an actively engaged, emotionally attuned, empathic, affirming therapist, the patient is guided to process emotions deemed too overwhelming to face. Experientially processing these previously avoided emotions activates innate self-righting mechanisms, adaptive action tendencies and other resources that support psychological well-being and optimal functioning.

Jerry Lamagna, New York, NY