Tonight's special guest is Dr Michael Deninger (PhD in Special Education) from Alexandria, VA, a child abuse survivor and former Officer at MaleSurvivor.org. He's the author of "Snakes in My Dreams: A Mental Health Therapist's Odyssey from Hardship to Healer," and is here to talk about his work, including the use of Eye Movement Integration (EMI) therapy. Mike was raised by a father who was a violent alcoholic, so Mike was "the good boy" who did well in school until, he says, "I got to college and started drinking every day." He did well enough to earn a MA and then a PhD degree in special education. "Although I always knew I was attracted to my own sex," he writes, "I married and raised two children." He explains, "Throughout my adult life, I was depressed and battled anxiety in the form of a social phobia that caused me to be fearful of throwing up in situations where I felt on display." He quit drinking at 45,after coming out of the closet. Eventually he recalled in bits and pieces how he was sexually molested by his father on several occasions during childhood. "Fragments of memories I had always recalled were coupled with the reality of what happened to me through dreams, waking realizations and the assistance of a great therapist." He goes on, "I finally understood why my life was so arduous, and why I chose to dull my senses with alcohol for 27 years. In spite of all my accomplishments, I felt like a fraud whose deceit would be discovered at any time." At the age of 50 he left his position at the university and became a counselor in private practice, a specialist in the treatment of trauma and PTSD.
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