Resolving a Phobia
by Andy Tomlinson
A regression therapy case study resolving extreme phobias of fainting at the sight of blood or babies being born.
About the client
Debbie (name changed) was a thirty five year old unmarried hypnotherapist.
To resolve her phobia she had already seen five hypnotherapists, an Emotional Freedom Technique therapist and a trauma therapist using eye desensitisation, but none had any helping effect. Her doctor was very kind and understanding and had referred her to a Cognitive Behavioural therapist. The work together helped with some of the anxiety but he told her there was no logical reason for her problem and had given up.
In her own words Debbie describes her symptoms and what happened in the therapy sessions.
I first remember feeling faint at hospital when I was 5 years old and sitting opposite a man with his fingers chopped off. I kept looking at his bleeding hand and his face that was screwed up with pain. The actual fainting first started when I was at school and friends talked about their injuries. When I started to date boys I went to the cinema and on one occasion a rape scene came on. I tried to desperately dash out, but collapsed on the foyer floor.
I fainted if anyone gave birth on TV or if I read about birth in a book, or even if I had to stand in a queue near a pregnant woman. The fainting would be horrible coming without much warning. When I received notice to have a cervical smear I went dizzy. I couldn't visit anyone in a hospital and would faint before I got in the doorway. If I heard of anyone having an abortion I would faint just thinking about it.
My life became emptier as there was almost nothing left that I was able to do. Emotionally it was like being paralysed. I loved having friends but the fear of fainting was so overwhelming that I stopped doing anything that might trigger a blackout. I reluctantly spent most of my time alone as anything social involved a high risk of embarrassment.
When I went for regression therapy I regressed into the past life of a young woman living in a tall house near a waterway. At some point I found myself entering a room with an older woman with her back to me wearing a pinafore dress. In front of her was a table with four dirty tools on it. The thought "I don't want to die from an abortion" came to me and I started to shake uncontrollably. It was like I was in that experience for real.
I was quickly taken through the death in the past life and found myself somewhere nice. I'm not sure if this was in the spirit realms but I wanted to stay there. The therapist told me we had some more work to do and when I was ready we would go
through the last part again.
I was on the abortion table at the point when my legs where being raised for the abortion. I was shaking again and the therapist asked to find a spirit animal to help me. The thought of a frog popped into my mind and I laughed at the thought
but the shaking stopped. I was able to move my legs. The therapist reminded me that the problem was from a past life and I could let go of it now. I felt the most wonderful feeling in my body. It was the best feeling I can remember since being a child at Christmas. I was so unbelievable happy. I slept much better that evening.
In the next session I found myself straight back to the abortion scene. I was aware of being on my back. I didn't know if I had actually fainted or was still in the past life. I then realised that I was lying in the street and that when I faint they are the same. I was wearing a greyish coat below my knees and the dress was full with petticoats and underskirts. I had black shoes on and was dying of infection.
After the death point I couldn't move on. I was full of shock and confusion! I was asked to imagine the body being taken to the spirit realms and cleansed in a healing waterfall of energy. Thoughts came to me of children and woman helping to pour water on me. Everyone was laughing and loving. It felt as if my body was healing together with my arms and legs and the therapist suggested gentle white light of protection before going back.
The past life now emerged without any fear. I was taken through the death and asked to meet the woman who did the abortion. I picture came to me of a hard and cold face. I enjoyed telling her to clean her instruments and get proper training next time. The thought came to me that she had had illegitimate children of her own and that she had a hard life. The therapist said, "Oh" as if a thought had surprised him. I waited for what seemed a long time and then he asked if I like to meet the spirit of the baby from the abortion. The thought of holding the baby came to me and the therapist gave me a cushion to put my arms around. It felt wonderful and I said sorry that I had mutilated it. I was deeply moved and felt a warm presence of the baby. It was an amazing experience.
Change of Symptoms
Feedback from the client.
The regression sessions have been a major turning point in my life. The trauma was deep and the sessions intense. I had been phobic since I was five years old and my identity has been formed around the avoidance of a phobic reaction. At first it wasn't easy to assimilate all the changes that have occurred and there was a deep sadness because of all the 'wasted' years and so many avoided opportunities. The sadness has now given way to a realisation of how profound the changes have been as my life continues to open up.
Amazingly the phobia has complexly gone. I was able to hold my sister's baby in hospital and enjoy the experience. The thought of abortions carries no fear for me. I have a new job as a therapy manager at a charity, a job that I had been offered twice before but refused because of my phobia. I've had many birth and labour stories in my work as a therapist. I am fine.
I hope my experience might give hope to someone else. There is life beyond fear, even though we might become discouraged and begin to believe that this is not so. I never gave up hope that someone could help me but it was the absolute professionalism, kindness and profound patience from my regression therapist that enable me to trust enough
to release my fears.