Over all the years I have been working as a therapist, I have come across just about every variation on the theme of “Abusive Relationship”, from children sexually abused by parents and / or other family members to emotional blackmail, verbal abuse and “gaslighting” – where one partner manipulates the other into thinking he / she is going mad.
The two main strands involved in supporting clients who are looking for help in such situations are, first, to get to the real underlying root cause of the issue and, secondly, to encourage the client to re-discover their true self.
Those who have been sexually abused from an early age (and I have known this go on even into adulthood) carry a heavy burden that could typically include shame and embarrassment; anger, rage and hatred; a sense of betrayal, loss of trust and confusion about right and wrong. All of these create a potent cocktail that frequently shows up in the adult as feelings of inadequacy and low self-esteem; inability to cultivate healthy relationships and / or appropriate sexual boundaries; a “self-destruct” button and / or self harming.
Different therapists will approach this scenario in their own ways – just one reason why it is important to find a therapist that you are comfortable with before embarking on this healing process.
My approach is typically guide a client through what I call “soul retrieval” – the client’s unconscious will tell me in which years of this life there have been trauma or events that need to be healed. With the client in a deep state of relaxation, and using powerful visualisation techniques, we go back to each year indicated in turn, not to re-live the trauma but to release the negative emotions. My question is never “what happened?” (which triggers the conscious mind) but rather “how is he / she feeling?” which keeps it in the unconscious emotional level. This can be a hugely emotional process as the client finally lets go of all the emotional baggage that has been stuffed down, hidden away for so long, and healing can take place: amazingly cathartic.
Then we can re-build the client, allowing him or her to re-discover their true self, their true power. This in itself is a process of transformation, and I love to see a lighter, brighter, more confident person emerging from the shadows.
Emotional or mental abuse is equally destructive, and gaslighting can destroy someone without them realising what is happening.
Here I work with the client to unravel the tangled roots of the issue back to source. Sometimes this is not as easy as it may seem and may well be somewhat uncomfortable for the client as outdated, inappropriate beliefs and conditioning are dismantled. Relationships may then be seen in a different light; power games recognised for what they are; and different choices may be made, all in a safe, secure environment that builds confidence, self-power and understanding.
If you know someone who may benefit from resolving such issues, do give them my contact numbers – 01444 459 433 or 07597 020 512. Or they can get in touch using the form on this website: the messages do reach me, and I do respond!
I am based in Haywards Heath, West Sussex, and I work from Vinings Natural Health Centre, also in Haywards Heath. I look forward to hearing from you!