Accelerated Experiential-Dynamic Psychotherapy (AEDP)

AEDP* (Accelerated Experiential-Dynamic Psychotherapy) is a transformation-based, healing-oriented model of psychotherapy developed by Dr. Diana Fosha. It has roots in and resonances with many disciplines, amongst them attachment theory, affective neuroscience, and body-focused approaches. In AEDP, the aim is to foster the emergence of new and healing experiences through the in-depth processing of difficult emotional and relational experiences.

Intense emotional experience and suffering are part and parcel of being alive; they are also—if properly regulated—the pathways to resources and resilience. But when these experiences, bad or good, threaten to overwhelm us, we need others to help us regulate them. Being alone with unbearable emotions is at the root of psychopathology. When relationships fail to help regulate what is too much to bear alone, people resort to defensive strategies. Long-term reliance on these defenses disrupts growth and development, blocks access to adaptive resources, and contributes to the pain and difficulties that lead people to seek treatment. In AEDP, our goal is to be together with our patients as they process intense emotional experiences which were previously feared, be they painful or joyful.

Furthermore, we are not just bundles of pathology: Lodged deeply in our brains and bodies lie innate, wired-in dispositions for healing and self-righting. AEDP also aims to activate these naturally occurring, adaptive change processes. When the self has reason to hope that a relationship has such potential, defenses can be put aside and individuals can risk leading with their genuine, spontaneous responses. It is what AEDP seeks to facilitate through its affirming, emotionally engaged therapeutic stance and its relational, experiential, and integrative techniques.

For more information about AEDP, please visit

To view a complete list of Trauma Center staff and identify those who practice AEDP, click here.


*The Trauma Center gratefully acknowledges Dr. Diana Fosha and the AEDP Institute for permitting reproduction of this description from the AEDP Institute website.



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