The previous article (6.) is now the reference and thus the basis for further considerations and comments.
This text is about the preliminary talk (A). A very essential part of the session, which is about memory and the processing of memory. Remembering is difficult enough. But the question of processing – problematic …
Some moments of the past we can remember clearly. Others we see less clearly, however hard we try. And others we have lost in a kind of fog. And then there are the moments and times that seem to be erased. These gaps, however, are very subtle. They almost always point to traumatisation. It is the gaps in the continuum of the self that arise as a result of split-off experiences.
The biography of a person is, retrospectively seen, to be regarded as one single narrative. A person as a story, a novel of a life – the different chapters of this narrative are written in principle and logically sequentially. A ribbon woven from events and experiences, which is woven further and further in the time line. But it does not show up in the memory as logically and continuously as life has continued. Events are later jumbled up, are difficult or impossible to assign to time. Some moments, times, events are completely missing. As if someone had torn pages from his own biography.
Nothing about this is as random as it often seems. In fact, these missing pages are deliberately erased. namely, unconsciously. If they were as easy and clear to read as the paragraphs or whole chapters from other times, they would go beyond the scope of the book. In fact, they must be missing so that the owner of his own biography is not killed by them.
This is exactly why the pages were removed. Let’s say, put aside. Well hidden in a place that is difficult to access, in a safe – namely in your own subconscious. What lies buried deep there is deliberately and by one’s own power, even through the most intense thinking, mostly no longer findable and accessible.
That’s a good thing, one might think now. What is forgotten may rest there forever. It would be nice if it would work that way. But unfortunately it doesn’t. What has been hidden in the safe of the subconscious, then hidden from the access of the conscious mind as if through a firewall, has an effect. Unfortunately, for life. And that aftereffect is often very unhealthy. It’s as if these deeply hidden memories are starting to mold and become scruffy. At some point, this has to be ventilated and cleaned up to make you feel better. Or to put it another way: If the garbage is left lying around too long it becomes a rotten corpse.
The preliminary talk is an attempt to open a window of consciousness, so that some light also brightens up the darkness of the subconscious. En passant so to speak, like a scattered light. Because in this room, simply switching on the light does not work – unfortunately. To illuminate the subconscious is a long process. If a person’s day-consciousness were a flashlight, it would take many attempts to shine into the deepest depths of the soul before anything illuminating would become visible. The mysteriousness of one’s own subconsciousness is like a shadow that swallows the light of the focused day-consciousness. Or more succinctly: the subconscious is so irrational that it cannot be dealt with by the rationality of day-consciousness.
Oh, then one could let go all thinking, all asking, all investigating, all wanting to understand and just surrender to the inner pain. Doesn’t clear up anyway.
No, wrong! Even if one cannot simply wipe away, think away or otherwise undo old wounds, deep-seated pain, old injuries and their real, subconsciously stuck reasons. Even if one cannot simply dig out the pages torn out of the biography. Nevertheless, the attempt to devote oneself to one’s own deep-seated injuries is already salutary.
Yes, this attempt alone is valuable. For only the intention to meet oneself in one’s own abysses has a positive mental effect.
Let us call this effect, for simplicity’s sake, resonance.
The person who says I have a mental pain and wants to dedicate myself to the reasons for it – this person resonates within himself and experiences an emotional feedback. A wave builds up. In fact, I think this wave is bigger than the thoughts it contains, because it consists of feelings that are triggered by thoughts.
The preliminary talk with client (C) serves exactly this purpose: To create the resonance with K and to build the wave. When the wave is there, i.e. emotionality becomes present, then the next steps of the trauma detachment and redemption can take place.
How exactly does a therapist (T) create the wave (of emotionality) with C?
Very simple: by asking logical questions accompanied by genuine interest.
What brings you to me?
I have a problem that …
Can you say when exactly it started?
Well, during the year…
What happened back then?
I did this, and then this happens…
I understood you, but can you describe it to me in more detail?
Go on and ask – until the wave is there. No, this text is not about surfing. But it needs courage here too. The courage to ask as precisely as possible without shyness. Your questions may stir up as long as they are devoted to therapeutic work. In fact, you should be stirring. This is exactly what resonance does. A resonance that is like a beacon of knowledge for K. In the moment of trauma release, a light often shines on you. Figuratively speaking.
To put it logically: the preliminary talk in the sense of an almost rational cognitive process is necessary for the trauma relief to take effect on a deeper, namely irrational level.
Read more about this in the next articles.
Yours – Otmar Jenner
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