The Case of Quivering Frank - case history - Hypnogenesis - Hypnosis & Hypnotherapy Journal

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The Case of Quivering Frank
By Bruce K. Stampley, MD(am), PhD, CH

Frank was referred to me by his physician after said Doc ran out of ideas. Frank was diagnosed with "Parkinson's -like symptoms". That translated to " I don't know what else to do for this man". Frank presented as an average looking, well kept man of 60. The exception to this average look was a very pronounced shaking of his right arm. He came to my office with his wife, who asked if she could sit in on the initial interview. I agreed, although this is against my normal practice to allow anyone to sit in on an intake session. The doctor who had referred Frank to me had provided me with a complete report of Frank's recent medical history and all the tests that had been run in an effort to determine the cause of Frank's palsy. There was no physical evidence to support the idea of Parkinson's.

As we proceeded with the initial intake interview, Frank's wife frequently interrupted his answers to my questions to interject her own answer or correct his. It turned out that Frank was a writer who was just about to have a book published, that he had had some serious business setbacks over the last two years and was only just beginning to see some relief from the financial plight he had gotten into. Deeper questioning revealed that the shaking had started about two years ago and had progressed to the point where Frank could not sit at his computer to work.

When I asked Frank about his views on Hypnosis, his wife answered that "they" did not really believe in Hypnosis but had come because the Doctor had recommended that they do so. When I directly asked Frank, he told me that he had dome some reading on the subject and was at least open to the idea. Based on that weak answer, I suggested that He go home and decide if this was really the modality of alternative health care that he wanted to persue.
Frank and his wife left, and I supposed that "they" would not be back. About ten days later Frank called and asked for an appointment. I agreed to see Frank but told him that no one else would be permitted in the session. We could tape it for his reference if he desired, but no one else was to be in the room.

Frank showed up for his appointment with wife in tow, shaking even worse than he had been the first time I saw him. His wife was not happy that I would not allow her to observe the session.
Frank proved to be a very good subject. He was a very intelligent , quick witted person, and understood immediately my instructions and explanation of what Hypnosis is and what it can allow one's mind to do.
In my practice, I rarely use the word Hypnosis, preferring the words altered state or relaxed state. I do this because of the public conception of Hypnosis as mind control by an outside source. I go to great pains to explain to my patients that I am simply there to guide them to where they need to go in order to produce a healing effect.
Even though he was shaking so hard that he literally had to hold his right arm down, Frank responded well to suggestion and went into somnambulism easily. As he reached that relaxed state, I was amazed to see the palsy stop altogether. I asked Frank to give me a report and he replied that where he was he didn't have to shake. When asked why that was, Frank replied that he didn't have to shake because he was in a place where he wasn't mad.
I brought Frank back to semi awareness to confirm what I had just heard. As he came back, the tremors came back, although they seemed less pronounced. Satisfied that I was not having auditory hallucinations, I led Frank back into the trance state. As he went deeper into trance the palsy diminished to the point that I could not visibly discern any unusual tremors in his right arm.

Using ideomotor signaling, I asked Frank to ask his higher mind if there was a need to have these tremors. When the right index or "yes" finger moved in the positive manner, I asked Frank to ask his higher mind if it was ok to communicate directly with it by verbal means and would it be willing to respond to me in the same manner. Frank's other self agreed to this procedure immediately, so I pressed on, asking what the purpose of the tremor was. Frank (or his "other self") said that the tremor was an acceptable way to express his anger. When I asked further what he was angry about, he said that he was very angry with his father. Frank had grown up in a highly structured Jewish family whose father was very controlling and administered physical punishment for small infractions of "the rules". Frank spent his childhood angry with this father and when the old man died suddenly at the age of fifty-two, Frank's twenty third year, he had not confronted his father with his feelings. He had been carrying this unresolved anger with him for almost forty years.
Based on that information, I did a Gestalt session with Frank and asked him to forgive and then say goodbye to his father. At the end of the session Frank was sweating profusely and tearful but appeared to be relieved. Upon leading him back to a full awareness, Frank said that he felt as though a huge weight had been lifted from him. I noted that at the end of the session, Frank had no visible tremor, but I deliberately made no comment. I walked Frank to the front office and stood by making a bit of small talk while Frank's wife paid the fee. When I suggested to Frank that probably only one or two sessions would clear this matter, his wife interjected that "they" couldn't afford much of this foolishness. I said goodbye and watched as they walked to their car, the wife talking constantly as they crossed the parking lot. I observed that Frank had a noticeable tremor as her reached for the car door.

At the next session, Frank again had a tremor although it did not seem as violent as at the first session. Again, he responded well to the induction and went into trance easily. I immediately asked Frank's "other self" to tell my why he was shaking again. Was there some process of illness in the body that was the cause? Frank again told me that anger was the cause of the tremors. Questioning led me to believe that Frank was angry with his wife for being the controlling figure that represented his father.

I asked Frank if he loved his wife. He said that he did. He hated that she" had to run everything". I took Frank through a scene where his wife was doing all she could to help his career the best way she knew how. If she was sometimes overbearing, it was in his interest. I gave Frank instructions on forgiving and understanding and installed a post hypnotic suggestion that it would be good for Frank to suggest that he and his wife seek the help of a marrige counselor.
When Frank returned to his full awareness, he was quite relaxed and there was no tremor in his right arm. That was the last time I saw Frank.

Through the doctor that had referred him to me, I learned that he no longer had the Parkinson's type symptoms and that he and his wife were going to a marrige counseling group. My conclusions were that Frank's unvented rage at his father, which was transferred to his controlling wife had been converted to a palsy, which was an acceptable visible manifestation of that anger. Once the father was forgiven and his other anger able to be expressed in a comfortable setting, Frank's Parkinson's disease no longer had a place in his life. This is but one example of how hypnosis can help uncover the real causes of physical problems and help lead to a sensible resolution. Copyright Bruce K. Stampley

Bruce K. Stampley, MD(am), PhD, CH
The Desert Institute, P.O. Box 21652, Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA 87154
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