Are there any therapists who treat Complex PTSD in Northern Jersey?
February 20, 2021 5:30 PM   Subscribe

I'm in need of a good therapist who treats Complex PTSD in the Bergen/Hudson/Passaic County area. (Rockland County, NY would work also.) I've attempted to find one via my insurance, Psychology Today listings, Googling, etc., and haven't had any luck. Does anyone have any suggestions?
posted by Four-Eyed Girl to Health & Fitness (4 answers total)
Look for someone that does EMDR or Somatic Experiencing? Many of them are used to treating complex trauma.
posted by crunchy potato at 8:03 PM on February 20, 2021 [1 favorite]

Hi! I’m a clinical psychologist with research and practice expertise in PTSD. One of the two treatments for PTSD that are universally considered in the field to be evidence based (Cognitive Processing Therapy) has been found to be equally efficacious for standard PTSD and complex PTSD. The other one (Prolonged Exposure) hasn’t been tested for that symptom profile to my knowledge. Cognitive Processing Therapy is a searchable option on Psychology Today. You can also look for credentialed providers at but that list is much more limited.

I don’t recommend EMDR as a front-line option for any form of PTSD unless it’s the only option available (look at the info in my bio if you want more info about that). Somatic experiencing is not an evidence-based treatment so ymmv.
posted by quiet coyote at 8:12 PM on February 20, 2021

I second looking for someone who does EMDR based on my positive experience in treatment as someone with PTSD/OCD. Even if you choose not to try this modality, the practitioner will likely understand trauma much better than your average talk therapist. Mine was a social worker who spent years as a CPS case worker before becoming a LCSW and I think that helped her understand trauma better, too.
posted by smorgasbord at 9:08 PM on February 20, 2021

I'm a clinical psychologist who has worked in a complex PTSD specialist service in the UK. The thing you might try to look for is phased treatment (where the first part, stabilization, involves gaining distress tolerance and symptom management skills; the second part involves processing the trauma itself using other types of therapies). Therapists who have a combination of (i) DBT, distress tolerance, mindfulness etc., for Part 1 along with (ii) trauma-focused CBT, cognitive processing therapy, narrative exposure therapy for Part 2 are good bets. In our clinic we also used a fair amount of EMDR and compassion-focused therapy although these approaches have a smaller evidence base (CFT also seems to be a mostly-UK thing). However responses are very individual and you can definitely try out different modalities to see what gives you the most improvement.

ISTSS guidelines:
posted by monocot at 2:10 PM on February 21, 2021

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