Posted on 07 July 2017
Many of the women I see in my Post Natal PTSD hypnotherapy clinic come to me a long time after the event, often when they decide to have another baby. They have suffered in silence since the first birth and then feel spurred to seek help as they do not want to go through such a horrific experience again.
In these circumstances, I aim to do two things. I work with the woman to clear and remove the initial trauma, using techniques such as Eye Movement Integration (similar in methodology to EMDR) and the Havening Technique and I also help to prepare my client for the next birth. I was therefore interested to come across this article in The Guardian recently.
The article reports on a small study showing that teaching women mindfulness improves their birth experience. So far, so good, but then I took a peek at the comments section below the article and this turned out to be a right old row about whether natural childbirth is the answer and lots of very sad tales of women feeling they had been bullied and judged for failing do the birth ‘properly’.
This interests me, as I know from the women who some to my clinics, that other people’s expectations and opinions can exacerbate the trauma they are suffering. They are often in great psychological pain because they feel they have let others down and failed in some way. Guilt feelings and the idea that they have missed out on what should have been a wonderful experience can be incredibly painful and cause real emotional problems.
If you are going through this, let me reassure you, this pain can be dealt with and often in relatively short time. I have a wide range of techniques which can help, but for this post I want to concentrate on one aspect of the many things I do.
Working with my clients on their self-esteem and confidence is one of the most effective changes I can help clients make once we have cleared the impact of the trauma due to the birth experience.
When I am discussing a client’s expectations of their next birth I make sure that I listen to their beliefs and expectations and work within their world view and preferences. Together, we discuss in detail what their dreams and desires are . . . how they want things to be. Within that framework, I encourage my clients to be realistic and resilient, in my view reality and resilience are an important part of true self-esteem. And things can go wrong in childbirth, medical intervention is sometimes necessary. The process of childbirth can be painful, and while that pain can often be managed and a positive mental attitude can help, for some women taking medication to control the pain is a good choice.
I always have goals in mind with my client. For me, confidence and self-esteem means a client can say clearly and firmly what she wants, what she requires and how she wants the birth to be. Resilience means that if things do not go to plan she knows she has enough inner strength to change and adapt.
These qualities can also help to overcome a traumatic birth experience and develop a positive and optimistic attitude if you choose to have another baby. They are also great qualities to have for life in general and all it can throw at you.
Call me on
or click here to email me
or send me your details: