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EFT with a schizophrenic client

EFt Tapping Outdated ImageNote: This is one of 3,000 articles written prior to the updated Gold Standard (Official) EFT Tapping Tutorial™.  It provides practical uses for EFT Tapping and most EFT'ers should find it very helpful.  However, if your benefits are temporary or a more in-depth approach is needed, you are urged to explore our newest advancement, Optimal EFT, by reading our free e-book, The Unseen Therapist, and/or (3) get help from a Certified EFT Practitioner.  

Note: This article assumes you have a working knowledge of EFT. Newcomers can still learn from it but are advised to peruse our Free Gold Standard (Official) EFT Tutorial™ for a more complete understanding.

Hi Everyone,

Gillian Wightman from Scotland takes us through the inner workings of a complicated case. Please note her emphasis that inexperienced practitioners should "not go where they don't belong."

Hugs, Gary


By Gillian Wightman, EFT-ADV

Gary,

I am sharing this experience because I think it may be of interest to mental health professionals and a reminder for everyone on how important it is to listen and reflect people’s exact words back to them without comment.

Recently I received a phone call from a young woman who asked me to help her make a decision about where she should live as she knew I also use kinesiology.  I explained I would help her clear the confusion so she could make her own decision; I didn't use kinesiology in that way.  I asked all the normal questions about medication, and history as part of the normal intake and she told me she was taking medication for anxiety.

I started of the session with her distress that she could not seem to make a decision about whether to return to her house and her feelings of being under pressure to make this decision.

Even though I don’t know what to do, it feels like my brain has shut down, I just cannot think, I cannot make a decision...

Even though I am scared people will get mad at me because I don’t know what to do...

I explained to her that when working with people who have a decision to make I normally get them to look at both sides and clear any possible blocks or emotions so that in the end they will feel comfortable with whatever they decide.  I often ask for pros and cons to start the work.

This is what we did, the cons were her house was cold, she couldn’t afford to heat it, and the neighbors bothered her.  The pros were her dad hated her living at home.  As we talked and I invited her to imagine her home she was getting strong feelings of discomfort.  As I started to ask the kind of questions I normally do to get some information about what was the cause of the discomfort it became obvious to me that she was consulting someone else.  She was turning her head and appeared to be listening to someone and the answers coming back were in code.  I worked that out later. At the time it was just appeared to be nonsense.

I became aware that we were working with either Dissociative Identity Disorder or schizophrenia.  This is not an area I am specifically trained to work with but both my father and my sister suffered from this condition so I was able to ascertain that in this instance that I felt safe, as I have had to develop a good radar over the years.  So I decided to do what I normally do and work with whatever was coming forward, I had no sense that I did not belong here.

She would say ‘I have been told to say...’ and I would instruct her to tap on exactly what was said, even though we didn’t understand what the code meant.

Even though I have this tears for me be junior problem...

Even though I have this breakdown problem...

Even though I have this bad futile attempt problem...

Even though I have this war, war, hell problem…

I had no idea the meaning of any of this and neither did she at this point but it was clear she was becoming more relaxed.  I had explained the intensity scale and she would say, “I feel it is coming down, they are 7 and 8 but in a good way.”  This carried on until she let out a deep breath and said, “We are all fine now.”  A conversation then ensued.

“What do you think?”  “I think you should tell her, she feels safe”.  “Yes I agree it’s safe”.  “Tell her what happened when you were 7”.

At this point she looked at me and said, ‘This is me talking to you now … I hear voices, they have been with me for 10 years.  I was hospitalised at that point but never took medication and I have learned to live with what has happened to me.  The problem is I don’t always understand the voices; they talk in code.  I am sure this is happening to me for a reason I just don’t know what it is.  I deliberately didn’t tell you about this because I wanted help with this problem and I decided I would wait till I met you to see if it would be ok to work with you.  If it didn’t feel safe I wasn’t going to stay.”  (And there was I deciding I was the one who felt safe!)  She was not in any way asking for help with the voices, she wanted therapy for her confusion and to help her make a decision.

I told her I felt okay about proceeding and explained what we were going to do, that we would tap for whatever came up, in however it was expressed, and focus on how it made her feel in her body.  I asked her how she felt about looking at what happened when she was 7.  Was it ok for her to do so and she said it wasn’t.  I invited her to explain to her other parts that she had listened to their suggestion but was going to make the event into a movie to make it safer for her.

She called the Movie ‘I’m battered within an inch of my life’ and the level of intensity felt like it was 9 on a scale of 0 to 10 for her.  As we tapped for the movie the intensity came down and other numbers were being called out.  Again we carried on until what appeared to me to be three persons, were at peace with the thought of looking at the movie.  She told the story and we tapped on the intense moments.

Even though there was so much shouting...

Even though he hit me and I felt so unsafe...

Even though he tore my world apart, nothing felt right anymore...

Then another code came through

Even though I have this bad Sharon karma…

She said this made sense of her discomfort in her own home as there was a lot of shouting next door and she was so aware of the angry energy.  Also she explained what the above sentence meant to her.

Even though I did that and I wish I had never done that, it makes me as bad as him...

Even though I am sensitive to the energy next door and I don’t know what I want to do...

Even though I think I should know what to do…

Even though I need more time, I don’t understand this so I can’t make a decision right now...

It turned out she was under no pressure to make a decision and the pressure was coming from her because she felt she ought to be able to do so.  She told me that me listening to her without comment as if her babble (her words) was totally normal, and starting to tap on her for whatever it was that she was saying, was very healing and liberating for her as she was always so aware of people’s reactions when the voices were talking.  She felt very good about the fact that right now she didn’t have all the information she needed to make a decision and did not feel under pressure any more to do so which felt like a good result for the session.

She made another appointment and upon return reported that the she had not been experiencing the same volume of voices or code and had maintained a highly productive period where she felt balanced.  This was the longest period of time she had achieved this.  Her mood had crashed after an argument with her mother and the voices and code had come back.  However they were, on the whole, not present as much when we worked.  The session was focused on first reconnecting her with her body, she felt numb and dead and unable to connect with any feelings or thoughts.

Even though I feel nothing, I am talking but I can’t tell you how I feel, I am numb, dead, frozen, something has frozen inside me...

She became aware she had anger like a frozen energy and an inability to express anger.  Her fear is that she had no way to express it.  Every time she tried she had turned it in on itself which caused depression and her only attempt to express it had so far resulted in her psychotic period which had hospitalised her.

Even though I can’t express anger...

Even though I am so afraid to express anger, I go crazy when I try...

Even though I have swirls of energy moving through me, down into my legs…

Then a little code came through

Even though it’s nobody’s business but your own you nosey mare...

Even though I want you to tell my dad not to touch...

Even though maybe you can but I can’t...

Even though I am so unsupported...

I got her to focus on what she felt in her body as sensations started to shift and change.  She felt a pressure on her head which she described it as something like wet clay.

Even though I have wet clay on my head, its covering my mouth and nose, its like a dirty nappy (diaper)...

Even though I have a dirty nappy on my head, I can’t breathe...

She was able to be aware of more sensations and each sensation brought up more layers of memory until she was very aware of being in a cot, crying, alone as a very small child.

Even though I am so little and so alone, no one can hear my crying, I am crying so much, they can’t hear me...

Even though I have put my nappy on my head they still don’t notice me...

My intuition kept adding in the word cold, with each round I was adding cold and she said you keep saying cold and you’re right, I was very, very cold, I hate being cold, my house is so cold, that’s why I don’t want to be there.  She was also aware that this was happened just after the family had moved to this house which had been a very difficult period for her parents and found moving home very stressful.

After this round of tapping she was clearer on the reasons why she had wanted to stay at home with her parents rather than return to her own home but also was aware of the difficulties that her presence caused her parents and felt less distressed about the thought of returning to her home.  She could see how she had been adding to her mother’s tension by making lots of plans and trying to railroad her into making decisions about her business, and that is why they had ended up arguing as her mother could not cope.

She was also aware of how difficult things had been for her mother when she was a child and because her mother ran her business from home there maybe had been an occasion or occasions where she had been left for periods and her parents hadn’t heard her because of working in another part of the house.

Her body felt totally alive and relaxed and she was not aware of any feelings of anger and she felt able to discuss the situation with her parents about what would be best for them all.

She came back to see me recently and reported that she was no longer getting so much auditory code but was seeing more visual signs.  She had successfully moved into her house without any of the problems she would normally have experienced, she was doing well, was happy and settled and put this all down to the EFT. 

She told me that she was doing energy work with a person who was doing research into schizophrenia and she had her higher energies straightened out and that she knew she needed to channel them into creativity, but EFT helps her with her personal problems.  This time we worked on an issue with a neighbour where she felt intimated and too scared to speak up for herself over a disagreement about her garden and the weeds next to his fence.

She felt more able to explain her plans for her garden to him and was not so worried what he thought of her.  She also planned to tell him she had schizophrenia which did affect the way she did things, and felt none of the familiar fear of letting people know about her condition.

We also tapped on a dream she had.  I continuously tapped as she related the dream, and at the end she knew this dream was a symbol of her grief at knowing she would never have a child.  She had made a decision to remain childless because of her condition, and the tapping had helped heal a deep and lonely place inside her.

I have been asked to give EFT training to a mental health team.  It is very exciting for me to do so, so that people who are trained to deal with these kind of issues can provide real help other than talk therapies which the team knew often caused more distress when old wounds were opened up without resolution.

Personally, I had to do a lot of tapping on my sadness that it is too late for my sister, as she did end up committing suicide because of the condition 3 years ago.  I had never used EFT on her as I had believed I was not supposed to tap on mentally ill people all those years ago.  I now understand that I am not to go where I do not belong and I truly did not belong to go there with my sister who was dangerously psychotic and would threaten to kill me when very ill. 

This client is not like this in any way and it is a joy to be able to help her.  She is reveling in being treated just like any other person I work with and I very much enjoy working with her.  In fact she is probably the most straightforward client I have, it’s all out there for us, and I don't have to do much digging!

Best wishes

Gillian

 

 

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