One of the most common causes of long-standing depression is guilt from an abortion. I know. You think you're over it. Not so, in many cases. Here's why.
Whenever there is an emotional experience, our subconscious minds get programmed. How permanently they get programmed is a function of the degree of emotion. Do you ever get over a forcible rape, a lover who cheats on you, the sudden death of a loved one, the terror of being lost as a child? Well, maybe. But again, maybe not. It depends on the person. Now there are ways of finding out how much of the emotion still resides in the subconscious, ready to take over when the memory is triggered by something said, felt, heard or seen. You have no choice. The response is automatic. It's the way we're all built.
For many years I accessed old emotions using hypnoanalysis. With the subject's eyes closed and my arm on the back of the chair she was sitting in, I would talk softly close to her ear about certain subjects as I explored for traumatic events. I would watch the subject's eyelids flutter, her eyeballs rolling around under the eyelids, the flaring of her nostrils.
The first sign of hitting a hot spot was a little tear making its way down the cheek. I had entered the subject's subconscious, where the emotions lie, and brought out a response. That in itself doesn't fix the problem, but everything is now ready for the fix.
There are several ways to fix the problem so the emotion is discharged or extinguished. One is to get the person to cry, and cry they do. I always kept tissue handy as it was often need. Some would sob rather violently. I even had one roll on the floor, reliving an old event. Were they in a trance? I didn't induce one. I just talked softly about a younger girl or boy who was crying, and I said "See why she's crying."
They would all say they weren't in a trance. I don't know. It depends on how you define a trance. But what did happen is there was a partial reliving of an old traumatic event. Same thing happens to you when a movie brings tears as you relate to what's happening on the screen. If that's a trance, so be it. I would say it is. Not a deep one, of course, but a very natural one that happens to us whenever we fix on a past event, being oblivious to the present. It's all one needs for therapy.
NOW THE FIX!
It's so simple people can't believe it, but almost anyone can do it once you've gotten the subconscious connection. You have made the connection when the subject feels emotion. You give a suggestion and you give a trigger to install the suggestion to REMOVE the emotion from that experience.
In the case of abortion, I say something like this. "Now that abortion happened a long time ago, and there's no reason to carry that emotion any longer. When you decided to abort, you made what you believed at the time to be the best decision. (I am rationalizing for her) It's time to let those old emotions go and get on with your life and be a joy to those persons you care for. I'm advising her, giving her a different point of view). I'm sure you understand that now. (I'm giving the subconscious and the conscious a suggestion that is hard to argue with)".
First I must define the trigger: "So I'm just going to snap my fingers (clap my hands) and say DISCONNECT! (end of trigger and beginning of suggestion) and it will disconnect you completely from all the emotional upsets you've had connected with your abortion. That means any guilt you laid on yourself, any remorse you ever felt, any negative thing anybody said. (I redefine the trigger to get perfect understanding). All that will be permanently disconnected when I clap my hands and say DISCONNECT! If that's OK, just nod your head (getting permission to install the suggestion)." I do not want the person to vocalize!
When the head nods, I do the clap and disconnect 3 times, because the effect is intensified over just doing it once.
Then I say "Now I want you to go back to the time when you were so upset and see if there's any emotion there. I think you'll find it's gone. (I pause for a few seconds and watch facial expressions) Now whenever you're ready, you can just open your eyes and be feeling fine." If there's still some emotion I repeat the sequence. If it seems to come back later, I do it again. Severe upsets may need several "hits" spaced days or weeks apart, but they will give as long as the person really wants to be well. If they're getting something out of their behavior that they don't want to give up (disability checks), forget it.
Now when treating ANY depression, this procedure removes only one component of the depression symptom. In treating all causes of depression, it is not enough just to discover the cause. You MUST have an attitude change! So it works well with chronic depression IF the abortion was a significant part.
What is not helped by this method is an ongoing situation in the subject's life, like worry over kids, money, job, health and a lot of other things. But when the subject's life is in pretty good order and the depression started AFTER the abortion, it can go a long way toward relieving symptoms.
Most people's depression is made up of several traumatic instances involving guilt and rejection. I can take care of the past, happenings that are over and done with, but the present takes a type of therapy I'm not very skilled at doing. I think you must change his circumstances or outlook. Many times, physical and mental health improves with a change of job, neighborhood, climate, or partner.
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Note: The author of this page is not a state or medically-licensed professional.
Psychological Research Foundation, Inc.
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Last update April 4, 2006