|EFT ARTICLES: CHELLE & PTSD
|In March of 2007, I had the pleasure of working with several pregnant and postpartum moms in the
Pensacola, FL, area. They were gracious enough to allow me to videotape our EFT sessions, and I will be
creating DVDs of those sessions so that others can learn from them. I’m excited about this project, and
thrilled to have been able to work with so many wonderful women.
One mom that I worked with has just given birth, a VBAC after a cesarean that led to PTSD. Congratulations
to Chelle, her partner, and to baby Gryffen!
Several other moms that I worked with are due any day now, and I hope they are continuing to tap. Others
are postpartum and I hope they’re tapping too. Some of these women had never heard of EFT before we
began working. Others had heard of it, or perhaps even tried it, but none were very familiar with it. And
ALL of them experienced some really wonderful results. I will continue to follow up with them over time to
see how they are faring in the months to come, and I will share their feedback with you.
Today I wanted to focus on Chelle and Gryffen and their journey to birth. Gryffen is Chelle’s sixth baby. His
big brother, Nik, is a little over a year old and was born by emergency cesarean section. While many women
have cesarean births and do not develop PTSD, Chelle’s distress over her surgical birth is very
understandable– she was given a general anesthetic and it did not work. She felt the surgery but was
unable to communicate that to the doctors and nurses in the operating room. Afterward, when she told
them that she had not been anesthetized, she was invalidated and told that it was impossible. Of course it IS
possible, and Chelle was able to accurately describe what happened during the surgery, where medical
personnel were standing, and what they were saying while they thought she was out.
The nightmares, flashbacks and intrusive memories began immediately, while she was still in the hospital.
The trauma she experienced, combined with her physical pain and lengthened recovery time after the
surgery, also impaired her bonding with Nik. He seemed to prefer his oldest brother or his dad to Chelle,
and even their breastfeeding experience was rocky.
When I met Chelle, two physicians and a psychiatrist had diagnosed her with PTSD as the result of her
experience. She had been on multiple medications prescribed by these well-meaning doctors, in an
attempt to treat her symptoms. But she had stopped taking the meds, she said, because none of them
helped. She still had nightmares and flashbacks and intrusive memories. She just felt “foggy” all the time.
Not a good thing for a mother of five!
I had no idea if EFT could help Chelle. But it certainly couldn’t hurt.
She couldn’t tell me about what had happened, not without breaking down. So we agreed to start “globally”
– to “tap around” the problem first. After several rounds to help Chelle become more calm and present, we
began to use a version of The Movie Technique, breaking things down into scenes with one crescendo
each. This avoids reliving the painful incident, and is VITAL for working with intense traumas like Chelle’s.
The person can simply choose a word or phrase to represent each crescendo scene and we work with that.
Chelle’s initial rating of her distress about the five scenes as a whole was “off the scale, off the planet,
almost out of the Universe.”
We decided to start chronologically, so began working in order on each scene. The later ones were even
more intense than the earlier ones, so this was probably wise! Slowly, things began to shift. Over the
course of a 2 and a half hour EFT session, Chelle got close to tears a couple of times but never broke
down. And round after round, scene after scene, her intensity level steadily decreased. I was ecstatic
when we made it into the solar system, landed on the planet, made it into the right state, and then actually
got onto a numerical scale! When we got below a 10, it was even more exciting.
For the most part, we used the simple set-up, “Even though I have this problem (still have some of this
problem) with Movie Number (whatever), I deeply and completely accept myself.” Occasionally I would vary
it to something like, “Even though I have this out-of-the-solar-system intensity on Movie Number
(whatever), it’s okay, I love and accept myself anyway.” And we used only the shortcut tapping points, with
the occasional floor-to-ceiling eyeroll or tapping of the finger points.
At the end of our session, Chelle could relate the story to me– and did– without getting upset at all. She
smiled, and the smile went all the way to her eyes now. She said she felt lighter, as though a huge weight
had been lifted off of her. It was amazing and wonderful all over again, just like birth is. I never got tired of
seeing babies born, and I will never tire of seeing people shift and heal themselves with EFT.
The best part, though, was hearing Chelle’s follow-up about the results. Chelle’s nightmares and
flashbacks ended. The intrusive memories stopped. AND baby Nik, who had never slept through the night
in his entire year of life, began to do so from the very night that we worked together! He also began to run
to his mommy more, for comfort and to play. Their relationship began to heal, once Chelle was freed of the
emotional and physical trauma she experienced at his birth.
Chelle and I subsequently worked together again, on baby Gryffen’s position (he was breech) and then on
some of her other concerns about Nik’s birth. I will be bringing you that session in an audio file (listen
here), as Chelle once again very generously gave permission for it to be recorded and shared with you.
Sadly UNrecorded are the wonderful EFT sessions Chelle had with my friend, Donna, who served as her
doula. These sessions went right up to the time of Gryffen’s birth, since Donna was present during Chelle’s
labor and used EFT to help whenever it was needed.
I believe that the courageous work Chelle did with EFT helped her have her VBAC. And I send huge thanks
and much love to Chelle, to her partner and kids, to Donna, and to all those who contributed to Gryffen’s
hopefully healing entry into the world.
What if we could create a network of EFT-trained doulas, midwives and nurses so that no woman ever has
to live with PTSD after a difficult birth experience, like Chelle had to?
What we do to help mothers, helps babies too. Nik and Gryffen prove it. Thank you, beautiful boys!
And what we do to help mothers and fathers, babies and families, helps the whole world. Get out there and
use those healing hands, dear ones!
|by Eileen Sullivan, EFT CERT1 - June 2007
|What if we could create a
network of EFT-trained doulas,
midwives and nurses, so that
no woman ever has to live with
emotional trauma after a
difficult birth experience? The
time to do it is NOW.
While EFT has produced remarkable clinical results, it has only been in use in its current form since 1992. Therefore, it must still be considered to be in the experimental stage. You are an expert on your own health, so please take full responsibility for
your use of EFT. Eileen Sullivan is not a licensed health professional. She offers EFT as a certified EFT practitioner, ordained interfaith minister, and certified holistic doula. Where appropriate, please consult your healthcare practitioners regarding your
use of EFT. It is VITAL to note that you should not stop taking any prescribed medications, nor alter your dosage, without the advice of the prescribing physician.
|EILEEN SULLIVAN, CERTIFIED EFT PRACTITIONER (EFTCERT-I) EMAIL: AREYOUTAPPING (AT) YAHOO (DOT) COM (704) 905-4665
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