POSTED on www.attachmentdisorderhealing.com
Psychiatrist and trauma expert Bessel van der Kolk, MD, posted a webinar on neurofeedback August 9 which knocked me out. It changes the whole map on trauma healing. It may come down soon; please check it asap: http://neurofeedback2015.kajabi.com/fe/79711-rewiring-the-brain-free-ce-seminar.
[Or try this link to a 5 min intro. His 72-min seminar is below at “Click Here to Begin Your Free One Hour CE Seminar”http://neurofeedback2015.kajabi.com/fe/80095-support-neurofeedback-research-2015]
Please forward this your lists of therapists, colleagues, anyone interested in healing. Dr. Van der Kolk has promoted EMDR, yoga, and body work for decades. Now folks with early trauma can check out neurofeedback.
I’ve so far done 10 months of neurofeedback and the healing is enormous. But it’s not known enough or funded. Getting word out could stop suffering.
At minute 20, Van der Kolk shows graphics on how Sebern Fisher introduced him to neurofeedback. “She showed me drawings that traumatized kids did of their families (stick figures), then how they developed after 20 weeks of neurofeedback (real people), after 40 weeks (an attached group), and I was blown away by their development,” he says.
“There’s nothing I know that can do that,” he says. “When you see something like that, you pay attention. Can my psychoanalysis do that? Can my acceptance and commitment therapy do that? Can my friends who do EMDR or Somatic Experiencing do that? No. Nothing I know of can do THAT. Time to learn new things.”
My earlier blog on neurofeedback with links to Sebern Fisher interviews and locator pages to find a practitioner are here: http://attachmentdisorderhealing.com/neurofeedback/
I got a shock as Van der Kolk described “ways of being” which I have in spades, but never knew are symptoms of brain disorganization. Here’s what Van der Kolk said that knocked me for a loop:
“Our brain is shaped by human interactions, by the way that people respond to us, to rhythms, voices, touch, sounds, how we make music together. We are rhythmic machines; I talk to you and move my hands, my face, and I image you responding in kind."
“But if you talk to your partner and they freeze their face, your mind goes blank — because we need feedback… If the world does not respond to you, if people do not smile at you, if as a little kid when you come home people say, “Oh, you again”? You miss the experience of being in tune with people. It goes to the very core of our central nervous system.”
At this point (6 minutes in) I had to lay down on the floor and sob for 10 minutes. It totaled me. I had no attunement experiences until I was 4 1/2 and my sister was born. No responses, no rhythm.
“If you have many attunement experiences,” he says, ” when you get scared, someone’s there so the feeling gets repaired; someone gets mad but soon they repair it, then you get a sense of flow with other people. You know we can do things together, we can work things out. You know I can have a voice because my voice has an impact on you. You can have a voice because your voice has an impact on me.”
Again I was sobbing. What is he talking about? Have a voice, what’s that? I never had an impact. Work things out? Unheard of. I’m terrified at mis-attunement. I have no experience that what I feel matters.
In abuse or neglect, he says, “these neural rhythms get broken. The most important parts of the brain to grow in first years of life get you in tune with people, tell you what to be scared of, when to feel safe, how to connect, how to be in synch.” I was never in synch.
At minute 15:30 he shows astonishing brain scans. He says they show that when normal people hear a strange sound (“eeek”), they need to figure out what it means, “so all the different parts of the brain synchronize to focus on that. They’ve developed an N-200 filtering wave that says ‘ignore your phone, your hunger… just pay attention to this sound.’
“But traumatized people have enormous problems filtering out irrelevant information. They are hyper-stimulated by sounds, sights, images, body sensation, have a terrible time filtering them out. As you see here, traumatized people have very different wave forms. Different parts of the brain are not in synch… which explains why they have such a hard time learning from new experiences… taking new information into the brain, paying attention, taking in life as it comes, learning from it.”
That’s me. I’m hyper-stimulated by sounds, sights, images, body sensation. Half the time I can’t filter them out. This last point really concerns me. I had no idea that most people can filter out these things.
I just called my neurofeedback therapist and told him that I need a lot more help. “I’m afraid both of us under-estimate how disorganized my brain is,” I said. “You may want to try other areas of my brain for your sensors and/or other procedures” during neurofeedback.
Thank Heaven for neurofeedback and fighters like Dr. van der Kolk.