In this culture, we have not been particularly aware that our current distresses might be linked to our past distresses–especially childhood trauma. But as an EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) energy tapping practitioner, I was trained to pay special attention to a client’s childhood memories. When I ask “What does this person or situation remind you of?”, more often than not, I hear dreadful stories of abuse and abandonment that began in childhood and continued into adulthood.
I thought this correlation of distresses pertained only to emotional issues. But last week a friend sent me an article about the research of Dr. Vincent Felitti and Dr. Robert Anda. The article, entitled “Can Childhood Trauma Shorten Your Life?” addresses the relationship of childhood trauma to physical disease: cancer, heart and lung disease, auto-immune diseases–all of which affect longevity. Because of my work with weight issues, I was already painfully aware of the correlation of childhood abuse and obesity.
The study indicated that 25% of the responders had been beaten in childhood; another 25% came from households with alcohol and drug abuse. In Dr. Felitti’s words, “The study makes it clear that time does not heal some of the adverse experiences we found so common in the childhoods of a large population of middle-aged, middle-class Americans….One does not ‘just get over’ some things, not even 50 years later.”
If those statistics include you, take heart. EFT energy tapping has an 80%+ success rate in quickly “neutralizing” those horrific and life-shortening memories without re traumatizing the client. Most of my own practice focuses on childhood abuse and neglect–and once those memories are “neutralized”, a client’s present distress can be dealt with on its own terms.