FAQs ABOUT EXPERIENTIAL REMAPPING: 2015: November 13-15. Weeken begins Friday evening.
If you have questions about the ER process, you may find the answers here.
1. WHAT IS EXPERIENTIAL REMAPPING? ER is a powerful approach to individual therapy conducted in a group. Dr. Ward has been developing ER since 1990. It’s an evolving integration of his work in Pesso-Boyden System/Psychomotor therapy, gestalt therapy, systemic family therapy, and Jungian theory and therapy. It's unique in that it's "self-contained:" Your core issue at the time you begin is identified, its specific toxic causal elements are defined, a healing antidote to it is developed and applied, and you're done with that issue in its presenting form. The "treatment" is complete in this one experience.
2. CAN YOU GUARANTEE THAT? Of course not. But the “successful outcome” rate for ER is quite high, around 80-90% by our subjective estimate.
3. BUT WHAT IF I DON’T KNOW WHAT’S REALLY WRONG? OR WHAT’S CAUSING IT? No problem. Part of what makes ER so effective is that it doesn’t depend only on what you know consciously. It makes use of identifiable signals your un-conscious sends. We note the signals and then backtrack to the cause. All you need — and it’s a lot! — is the courage to step into your own unknown territory. And each such step is voluntary; none are taken without your consent.
4. WHAT'S IT LIKE TO PARTICIPATE IN ER? “WORKING” in ER means that you, individually, get a roughly 1.5-hour time period in which you are the exclusive focus of the ER process. Your work is called a "Structure." That's what's described in the answers to FAQs 1-4.
b. About the “risk:” This work is entirely safe, respectful, and serious. Taking any step or accepting any specific role is voluntary; neither your right nor your decision to refuse will be questioned. Whether Working or Accommodating, you will not be required to do anything that's physically painful, harmful to yourself or another in any way, or embarrassing. The risk of anxiety, however, as well as other intense feelings, is high. In ER, intensity is the price you pay for the chance to heal and grow.
5. SO WHAT’S THE VALUE IN ACCOMMODATING-ONLY? Accommodating for the sake of another’s growth or healing often taps aspects of our deep humanity that may be only dimly recognized, or perhaps even totally unknown, until the moment they’re called on. Using them awakens them and keeps them in consciousness, making them available as resources for your own life. Accommodating-only is a lower-risk, yet still growth-producing, way to get acquainted with ER. (It also costs less.)
6. HOW MANY STRUCTURES DOES IT TAKE FOR ER TO HELP? Most people have a successful ER experience the first time. Though many return to ER work for other issues, many attend only one weekend and then get on with better lives.
7. WILL ER WORK FOR MY DIAGNOSIS? Wrong question. ER doesn't work with diagnoses or symptoms, it works with wounds and stalled growth and their meaning. Many people with no formal diagnosis at all have worked productively in ER over the years. However, the question does have an answer: ER “works” for depression, anxiety, panic disorders, anger, marital problems, trouble parenting, PTSD, dissociative disorders, ambiguous unhappiness, and many other issues. It's not very effective at treating addictions (though addicted people can work with other issues in ER) or with certain personality disorders (Narcissistic PD, Obsessive-Compulsive PD, Antisocial PD).
8. CAN I COME FOR JUST MY WORKING TIME? No. One of the most powerful features of an ER experience is recognizing the group as the container in which troubling and painful issues can be presented, respected, and healed. You have an obligation to the other participants to be part of that container as a potential Accommodator when you're not Working.
9. DO I HAVE TO BE YOUR CLIENT TO COME? No. I do insist, however, that whether you Work or Accommodate-Only, you have a followup appointment with a therapist, to help with understanding and integrating the experience, and to identify important ER outcomes that might need followup. If you don‘t have a therapist, I ask that you agree to one followup session with Dr. Ward. There is a “Courtesy” ER Followup Fee” of $75 for this session..
10. BEFORE I RISK THIS, HOW CAN I BE SURE IT WILL WORK FOR ME? You can't. Though in my opinion ER has a significantly higher rate of clear success than most other approaches, success is not guaranteed.
11. CAN COUPLES PARTICIPATE IN THE SAME ER GROUP? Yes. In fact, couples have been transformed and marriages saved for some couples when both partners participated in ER. Couple therapy as such is not conducted. However, many issues that show up as relationship problems have their origins in earlier individual experiences, in childhood or in prior adult relationships. When both partners Work in ER, the individual issues (such as fear of intimacy or distrust of the opposite sex) can be untangled from the relationship, which then becomes less complex, cyclic, and “loaded.” The search for who’s to blame for the marriage problems often becomes irrelevant. Thus ER can remove the debris of personal "unfinished business", enabling more mature mutual perception and conversation, and clearing the way for adult love.
12. CAN I USE HEALTH INSURANCE TO PAY FOR IT? Yes, at least partially, if it will cover group therapy and reimburse you for Dr. Ward’s services. However, we will not file insurance for you. You'll have to pay by cash or check. We’ll provide paperwork with all the information you need to file for reimbursement yourself.
a. Please Note: Federal law now requires insurance companies to cover "out-of-network" providers to employees of a company with 50 or more employees. There may be creative ways for insurers to dodge this requirement, but most comply.
b. Please Note also: Insurance programs vary widely in their coverage and policies. It is your responsibility to check with your insurance carrier to determine coverage. You are, however, responsible for payment of the fees whether covered by insurance or not.
c. Please Note also: In most cases using your insurance will require a diagnosis of a "mental illness" that is entered into your permanent medical records. (This is what makes any psychotherapy eligible for health insurance coverage; no diagnosis, no coverage. This may not apply to some Health Savings Accounts. If you have an HSA, check its rules.) If you have an existing diagnosis, it can be used. Otherwise a brief assessment will be necessary to determine what, if any, diagnosis is appropriate. This can be done before the weekend in a brief interview; a brief screening test may also be necessary. Depending on how long it takes, there may be an extra charge for this service.
FOR MORE INFORMATION on the ER process, upcoming dates, fees, etc., contact Dr. Ward by phone at 803.730.6489, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.