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Addictions, both substance and behavioral, are some of the most challenging clinical presentations of our time, necessitating novel treatment approaches that can address the many facets of addiction. Treatment at this level of complexity requires exploration of all possible doorways into healing. EMDR therapy opens many of these doors.

Clinicians who treat trauma within their practices or settings should expect to see addiction show up, whether they are trained and ready for it or not, since the connection between trauma and addiction is virtually inseparable. However, many clinicians express fears about treating this population due to the unpredictability of the behaviors associated with addiction, the dangers clients encounter (both internally and externally) when caught in a cycle of addiction, recovery, and relapse, and the helplessness therapists can feel when faced with these complex challenges. Client examples and personal stories are included in this video.

This 90-minute interview format program asks and answers some key questions about addictions and other maladaptive dependency behaviors and the use of EMDR therapy to treat them.

  • On-Demand Online Course

    Access and complete this course within 90 days after purchase. This course may be taken as an introduction to the 12-hour course on Addictions.

  • CE Credits

    This course is approved for 1.5 CE Credits by EMDRIA and Commonwealth Educational Seminars. Beginning level.
    Also appropriate for Basic Training at Academic Institutions/Universities. Contact us for University Pricing.

  • Course Enrollment

    EMDR Professional Training™ Members: $49.99 Regular Enrollment: $64.99

Instructors: Susan Brown, LCSW, BCD, and
Curt Rouanzoin, Ph.D.

Susan Brown is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Board Certified Diplomate in private practice in San Diego, CA. She specializes in the use of EMDR therapy to treat complex trauma and addictions. She was a Principal Investigator in a pilot study using an Integrated Trauma Treatment Program (ITTP) in an adult drug court combining EMDR therapy and Seeking Safety©. She currently integrates Internal Family Systems “informed” ego state work within the EMDR protocol to deepen and enhance treatment with these complex clients.


Ms. Brown co-authored “Integrated trauma treatment in drug court: Combining EMDR and Seeking Safety” (Brown et al. 2015); Co-authored 2 book chapters, EMDR: Mental Health-Substance Abuse (Brown, Stowasser, & Shapiro, 2012) and EMDR Therapy and the Treatment of Substance Abuse and Addiction, In Innovations in the Treatment of Substance Addiction, (Brown, Stowasser & Shapiro, 2016); and co-authored the article, ‘EMDR in the treatment of Borderline Personality Disorder’ (Brown & Shapiro, 2006).


Susan has presented nationally on the use of EMDR with trauma and addiction. She is an EMDRIA-Approved Consultant and Basic Training Facilitator for the EMDR Humanitarian Assistance Program and the EMDR Institute. She currently teaches 2-day workshops on the utilization of EMDR therapy, integrated with ego state applications for complex trauma, addictions and other self-defeating behaviors.



Curtis Rouanzoin, Ph.D., founder and Co-President of EMDR Professional Training, was trained by Francine Shapiro in EMDR from 1991 to 1992.  He worked with the EMDR Institute as a Facilitator (1992) and then Senior Trainer until 2017. Throughout the years, he has worked to develop the highest quality EMDR Basic Trainings as well as Advanced Trainings in Complex PTSD and Dissociation.


Dr. Rouanzoin is Certified, an Approved Consultant, and an Approved Instructor in EMDR Therapy. He has trained mental health practitioners in EMDR Therapy both nationally and internationally.  Internationally, Dr. Rouanzoin traveled with Dr. Shapiro to Columbia on a Congress Against Violence and to pave the way for future EMDR trainings.  He also traveled to Japan with Dr. Andrew Leeds to train the first groups of clinicians there.While at Hope International University, where he taught for 22 years and developed the Marriage and Family Therapy Program, he created the first graduate-level university course in EMDR (1995).


Dr. Rouanzoin has conducted more than 45,000 hours of EMDR Therapy sessions with clients across all gender, socioeconomic, and cultural backgrounds.  He receives referrals for situations ranging from military/police/first responders to Complex PTSD/Dissociative Disorders as well as peak performance in athletics and theater/performing arts.


As both a Licensed Psychologist (PSY7809) and a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT8790), Dr. Rouanzoin understands the professional and clinical demands of both. His early training provided a solid foundation for the extensive post-graduate education he has received.

Dr. Rouanzoin has spoken on panels and made presentations regarding EMDR Therapy at EMDRIA, ISTSS, California Psychological Association, Anxiety Association of America, Orange County Psychological Association and the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine Department of Psychiatry.

Dr. Rouanzoin was a founding member of the Traumatic Stress Network (TTSN) in Southern California. TTSN was the first regional Basic Training in EMDR in conjunction with the EMDR Institute. As a founding board member and second President of EMDRIA, Dr. Rouanzoin helped develop the Standards and Training Committee.

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Our Students Say it Best

Course reviews

“This introduction was very informative. It left me with a better understanding of how I can best help and provide hope to individuals battling addictions and trauma. Will recommend.”

DeVita A.

“Excellent.”

Debra S.

“This 1.5 hour training is great to help build the confidence of the practitioner. We are all working with addictions when we use EMDR anyway. Why are we so scared? This training helped me put some of that fear to rest and recognize that I already have the skills and competence to treat addictions because I have been doing it for a long time anyway. Trauma is at the root of most addictions. I like addressing root causes.”

Marci M.

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