Alison Hunter, STh.
Alison Hunter has lived and worked in Ireland since 1981 and is the founder of Amethyst. She is a skilled and experienced group leader and regression therapist who worked for and with Dr. Frank Lake for three years in the 70s. She now teaches primal integration and regression therapy to professional groups.
Many people who push themselves to extraordinary lengths and feats of achievement have the fear of ‘being found out’ in the background, like a voice which says, “If only they really knew…” This feeling of insecurity can come from a mother’s reaction to the discovery that she is pregnant. There are many reasons why a woman may not want to be pregnant: maybe she is frightened, or she may have to interrupt her career, or her doctor told her she shouldn’t have any more children – maybe life was too hard, there might have been not enough love, money or space to go round, she could have been ill. The fewer cells there are forming the child when the mother may experience these negative reactions, the greater the hurt that can be made in our lives when those few cells develop into the trillions of cells which make up our adult bodies.
Over the years, I have come to believe that preborns can grow in the womb in shock and can be born and grow up still with this shock as a handicap right at the core of their being. In developing the work of the late Dr Frank Lake (see note), I have realised that healing at this depth can only take place when the same amplitude of energy reaches the traumatised cells as that of the initial hurt. This means that when working with someone with such deep pain, the whole person needs to be built up first so that the client may have the courage, with support, to visit again – at the same level of impact - that hurt place.
A client in her twenties was constantly telling me about her loving and compassionate mother who had been a great support during a seven-year illness, when she had suffered from various immune system diseases. She had always been depressed. She has a brother who is only eleven months older than herself. On regression, we discovered that her mother went completely into shock when she found that she was pregnant again with her first baby of three to four months still at the breast. By the time the mother was able to accept the pregnancy, the damage had been done and this client had grown up with a deep dread of a doom about to descend. Again, her birth compounded the difficulties with resulting claustrophobic/agoraphobic reactions and these were further complicated by later sexual abuse. In her therapy we helped her to go back to these terrible places, releasing the fear mainly through screaming. Pressure on her head at appropriate points was necessary to release the hurt and anger. With the moti vation of seven years of illness and a considerable amount of self-awareness and knowledge gained from counselling before she came to see me, this client was able to work through her major traumas in about four months.
However healing is a process and takes time, although the initial work to change life radically can be done quite quickly. A more normal length of time for therapy to effect a life-change would be between eighteen months and two years. Our mind-body spirit is more sensible than we are and does nothing on an “instant” basis. Each person needs to find his or her own rhythm and follow a steady path towards healing.
Note: Frank Lake, “Constricted Confusion” (1980), Clinical Theological Association, Oxford.
See also, S. Grof, “Beyond the Brain” (1985) State Uni. of New York Press.