Dear NHS: The Search for EMDR Therapy by Eleanor


(image: Freepik)

Today I am writing because I have had enough with the NHS mental health services.  Firstly, I was told that in my area of London, the NHS- national health service doesn’t fund EMDR (rapid eye movement processing therapy- for trauma and PTSD). Why, I have no idea as it is desperately needed. However, I was referred to IAPT wellbeing service (still under NHS), who do have EMDR therapists. Some telephone questionnaires later and I have found that I have been discharged from IAPT – to another team that doesn’t provide the therapy I so dearly need.

I have had years of therapy- CBT x3 and psychodynamic- most had to be privately funded due to the waiting lists in NHS. I need vital treatment for the trauma I faced of becoming so unwell,being in hospital and all I faced during mania and psychosis. My trauma comes out in anxiety and panic attacks which disrupt my daily living. EMDR helps process trauma and I am hoping it will help me to live fully again.

Due to this, the only option with therapy may be to go privately- which is expensive and not ideal for me- I can’t afford it alone. However, I have found an accredited therapist online so this will have to be the route I go down I think. I will speak to the psychiatrist in the other team but don’t hold out any hope as they don’t fund EMDR and there is a 2 year psychology waiting list. Yup, you heard that correctly, 2 years.

I am not doing so well- I have been feeling lower in the mornings and more anxious since having to leave my job. This was another blow today.


I am trying to keep myself positive and focused and going. But some days, I just feel like hiding away.

Some positives- I am grateful for:

  1. My new bright pink cardigan is making me smile
  2. Our wedding photos and video come back today
  3. Finding a therapist
  4. Bipolar UK sharing about my book
  5. Love and support from others
  6. Job interviews and book promotion

When people say fund our NHS mental health services, they mean it. People like me are denied access to vital support and put on waiting lists or fobbed off. Its not OK.

Eleanor x



11 thoughts on “Dear NHS: The Search for EMDR Therapy by Eleanor

  1. I am so sorry that you are unable to get the treatment you need. It is not necessarily any better in the USA. I had to go through hoops to get approval for TMS (transcranial magnet stimulation) and then it didn’t work for me! It is unlikely the health insurance company will approve any similar treatment because I had to drop out. The good news is that I went back on a small dose of Prozac with a psychiatrist approved supplement and my mood has improved. Recently my psychiatrist decided he did not want to accept my insurance and I had to pay cash. Then my husband got a new job with a different health insurance which he now accepts. Living with mental health always seems to be like a see-saw – okay when it is a gentle swing.
    I am sending you a hug, enjoy that pink cardigan and I will enjoy my new snakeskin pattern skirt which I ordered from Amazon!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. There is nothing more disheartening then feeling like your health needs are a low priority.
    Dealing with insurance bureaucracy creates it’s own health challenges or setbacks.
    I can empathize as I was denied OT services after the insurance decided to send someone in for a quick 2 hour assessment while ignoring a full day thorough assessment.
    Hope you find affordable help.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. that’s a disgrace!I am so sorry! Its horrible! I hope you can afford to go the route of private therapy if the NHS just wont fund it! What a bloody nightmare! Then they wonder why people get sicker! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

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