A new client came in reporting that she had no libido and was concerned for her relationship with her husband, whom she loved very much and with whom she was very close. She said that everything always had to be “just right” before she could even think about making love. Even then, she felt that she was doing something dirty.
Guessing that there might be a trauma in the background, I asked her about that, whereupon she reported that she had been raped by her ex-boyfriend a few years ago. As soon as she mentioned it, I noticed that something changed in the atmosphere, and she agreed that she was feeling literally dizzy and spacey—signs of nervous system trauma. When she talked a bit more about this painful event, she became very upset and teary. My client felt that the dizzy/spacey feeling and the upset and teariness were at a SUDS level of 8.
We went through several “scenes,” stopping each time to tap on specific emotions that arose. (I’m leaving out details of the event to protect this woman’s privacy.) When she focused on the first scene, she felt hurt and at the same time realized that, at the time of the original event, she felt she had no right to feel hurt.
We tapped on “even though when he ______, I felt hurt and even though I felt I had no right to feel hurt… “Even though he manipulated me like a puppet and I felt powerless and hurt….”
After this, she felt she should have been angry, but hadn’t felt angry at the time. She began feeling angry now. We tapped on “Even though I can’t believe I wasn’t angry…” “Even though I’m angry now…” After these rounds, she went from an 8 on the feelings of hurt and anger down to a 0 on both counts.
While remembering the second scene, she felt humiliated, betrayed and violated. We tapped on each of these feelings and on the specific behaviors of her boyfriend that brought about these feelings. She quickly went from a 10 to a 0.
While remembering the last scene, she felt used and objectified and she couldn’t understand why she stayed with her boyfriend after that.
We tapped on these feelings and on not understanding. Trying also to deal with the dizziness and spaciness, I brought in some statements that turned out to be right on:
“Even though I was stunned and it didn’t sink in for a while….”
“Even though I couldn’t believe that he really didn’t care how I felt or how he affected me…” These rounds brought the dizziness and feeling of being upset about being used and objectified from an 8 to a 0.
She said she felt that she was waking up. When I asked, “Does that mean you feel that you’re not quite awake?” she agreed.
We tapped on:
“Even though I feel that I’m not quite awake, I’m waking up now. I get it! I’m completely awake to what happened. I let my body and mind and nervous system know that it can release this event and let it go.”
After tapping a round or two on these statements, she felt completely awake. I tested her again on the whole event, having her go through the parts that had been so upsetting before. She said that she could see the memory in her mind, but it was “just a memory.” It had no emotional charge to it at all and the dizziness and spaciness were entirely gone.
She was amazed that, after only an hour, an event that she could never even think about, much less talk about, without getting tearful and upset was now “just a memory” with no emotional intensity whatsoever.
I talked with her about a month later, and there was still no emotional charge around the event. She had even talked with her ex-boyfriend and his wife and was not upset at all. She said that the memory was “just a memory” like any other. In addition, she said that the feeling she had had whenever she and her husband started to make love—that it was “dirty,” had totally vanished, that she felt more free and easy about having sex, and it didn’t have to be exactly the right time and the right setting of the mood to start. She also said that they had started to make time for dates away from the children, something she’d never been motivated to do before.
Contact Zoe Zimmermann, MA, LPC, Certified EFT Practitioner
Office Address: 75 Manhattan Dr., Suite 206, Boulder, CO 80303
Ph: 303-444-1195 E: firstname.lastname@example.org