Can hypnosis help families with autism?
For some people it would appear confrontation is a way of life for them. They seem to revel in being argumentative, sometimes for arguments sake. They increasingly raise their voices assuming that the louder they are and the more they talk over the other person then the more right and justified they are. However, they are never truly satisfied as they realise deep down (though would never admit it) that they haven’t ‘won’ their argument because they are in the right, it is just that the other person is no longer willing to continue the debate. They quickly realise there is no point in trying to reason with someone who is so pig-headed and arrogant.
There are others though who will do anything to avoid confrontation at all costs. This can be for many reasons. They may just be really easy going and have an even temperament where nothing ever ruffles their feathers and they do not see the point in getting worked up over petty arguments. Or there is the woman or man whose partner beats them up at the slightest provocation. They spend their lives walking on egg shells in fear of the next outburst. Then there is just the shy, timid person who just likes to get on with life and feels uncomfortable with any kind of confrontation, often getting themselves into a state if they knows there is no option but to confront someone.
One group of parents who often find themselves in this situation are the autism parents. As the number of children diagnosed increase, resources are stretched to the limit, leaving them feeling that their child is being short changed and not getting the right support or education.
From very early on they feel they have to justify their child’s behaviour not only to professionals but also to family and friends. They are often told ‘he’ll grow out of it’ or ‘he just needs disciplined’. This can lead to a feeling of failure on the parents’ part as they try themselves to understand this complex condition. The ‘professionals’ they turn to for advice and support very often don’t have enough expertise themselves to understand or have the resources to make the families lives easier.
A parent can often feel overwhelmed and out of their comfort zone trying to negotiate through the minefield of agencies often involved in their child’s development. Normally, an IEP (Individual Educational Plan) is created to help establish what resources and support should be put in place. However, these are often not adhered to leaving the parent frustrated at the lack of provision provided. The parent is often emotionally exhausted coming to terms first of all with the actual diagnosis then with the constant fight to obtain a proper education for their child. They are often physically spent too dealing with their child on a daily basis especially if their child is prone to outbursts and meltdowns.
The diagnosis though often expected stirs up many different emotions. Relief that their child will now surely get the right support, grief for the life their child may now never lead, anger at the unfairness of it all and overwhelming sadness watching the daily struggle their child has trying to fit into everyday life often made more difficult with society’s lack of understanding.
The relief that their child will surely now get all the appropriate support very quickly turns to disbelief, anger and frustration when no additional support is forthcoming and they soon realise that it is just beginning of a never ending struggle to get the appropriate help needed.
During this time of adjustment the parent suddenly finds themselves at never ending meetings where their child is discussed by a variety of professionals from different agencies who often haven’t even met the child leaving the parent feeling overwhelmed and intimidated. As the parent is emotionally involved they can feel frustrated at the lack of progress as schools are often reactive instead of proactive due to lack of provisions. The parents’ frustration can be perceived as confrontational and can be unproductive in moving forward obtaining viable solutions and getting strategies put in place.
Hypnotherapy can be beneficial as a tool in conflict resolution. By getting the client into a state of deep relaxation the therapist can guide their unconscious thoughts to become calmer and allow them to remain focused, expressing their needs and desires for their child in a more succinct, articulate way without becoming overly emotional.
This will allow the parent to get the desired outcome without feeling emotionally drained and distraught. Hypnosis can be used to deal with any confrontational issues the client may present as it addresses the underlying causes which can go hand in hand with the need to be confrontational. These may include the fear of speaking out publicly, shyness, low self-esteem, lack of confidence and lack of assertiveness.
Find a good therapist experienced in this area and don’t hesitate to ask for testimonials. Being politely assertive will get you further than coming over as aggressive and confrontational. Remember the old adage, ‘You catch more flies with honey than vinegar’.
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About Biodun Ogunyemi
Biodun Ogunyemi is the founder of Optimind, one of the leading hypnotherapy practices within the UK. He has practiced on Harley Street and is an experienced hypnotherapist, trained to the highest level in Advanced Hypnotherapy and NLP and is the author of over 180 hypnosis products.