Let the healing begin
Should I see a counselor about this? The appropriate answer is,
“Maybe you should.” If your experiences are preventing you from
feeling capable and effective, or if remembering them is
preventing you from enjoying life, maybe you should. Choose a
competent and credentialed mental health professional. You can
start by asking your doctor.
If it’s not interfering with your life, but you want to deal with
it anyway, what should you do? When faced with events that one
cannot control, what can be done?
There are general tactics one can use, as well as specific
techniques available to help one through this.
Generally, we are each responsible for those acts we commit when
conscious. We are not responsible for things we do when
unconscious or semi-conscious or when forced by someone else.
Likewise, harmful acts against us, perpetrated by others, are not
For acts committed against others by our own bodies, for example
vehicular assaults and homicides committed while “under the
influence”, we can expect to be held responsible. The assumption
in this case is that we chose to ingest those substances that
incapacitated us and led to our criminal behaviors.
But how do we deal with those harmful acts against us? Viktor
Frankl suggested an approach that seems most appropriate: we can
choose our response. In his book “Man’s Search for Meaning” he
“We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who
walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last
piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer
sufficient proof that everything can be taken from a man but one
thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in
any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.” “Man’s
Search for Meaning”, page 104
I highly recommend all of his books, audio and video productions
to everyone, whether they have been victimized themselves or
whether they want to understand those who have been victimized.
Dr. Frankl’s works help the healing, and the personal
Specifically, we can look at two anxiety disorders to gain
treatment techniques that help move us back into productive,
healthy lives. They are post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and
post-abduction syndrome (PAS). PTSD is recognized by professional
mental health classification and treatment organizations, while
PAS is not, as yet.
Neither of these, PTSD or PAS, has been proven to completely deal
with our current topic. These are presented as only possible
avenues for research and use. Also, PAS is presented here without
reference to treatment, because no methods were found, in the
research for this article. On the other hand, PTSD is presented
with its most effective treatments. It is hoped that until a
specific treatment is available for PAS, the methods used for
PTSD and other anxiety disorders will help.
Post-abduction Syndrome (PAS)
The word “abduction” in PAS refers to alien abduction. PAS does
not refer to humans abducting humans, (i.e., kidnapping), but
only to alien abductions. PAS shares many symptoms with PTSD. But
it is not the same.
PAS is based on those symptoms originally listed by alien
abduction researcher Budd Hopkins and described in his books
“Missing Time” and “Intruders”.
PAS symptoms include:
Persistent reexperiencing of the traumatic event characterized
Persistent avoidance of stimuli associated with the trauma
Denial of the event
Labeling the event something else
Phobic avoidance of areas or situations where contact occurred
Refraining from sleep at the time contact occurred
Emotional reaction to literature, pictures, or videos about
Numbing of emotions characterized by inability to feel
intimacy, pleasure, or to express
Diminished interest previously enjoyed activities
May have no expectation of normal life events or normal life
May fear abduction with no return or lengthy abduction
Hypervigilance, exaggerated startle response, irritability,
and/or panic attacks
As mentioned earlier, there is no treatment or cure listed with
PAS, as presently proposed. It is hoped that the treatments used
for authenticated anxiety disorders, like PTSD, are helpful to
those experiencing PAS.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and treatment
PTSD refers to stressful events that the person experiences as
highly traumatic. Like PAS, PTSD has everything to do with not
being able to trust your environment anymore. It’s very serious
It is possible for individuals to experience traumatic stress
without manifesting Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. But PTSD is
an anxiety disorder and not to be confused with normal grief and
adjustment after traumatic events. For most people, the emotional
effects of traumatic events will tend to subside after several
months. If they last longer, then a psychiatric disorder may be
diagnosed. It is also possible to suffer other psychiatric
disorders in addition to PTSD. These disorders often include
depression, anxiety disorders and addictions. PTSD may have a
delayed onset of months, years or even decades and may be
triggered by an external factor or factors.
There are dozens of treatments suggested for PTSD. PTSD is
commonly treated using a combination of psychotherapy and
psychotropic drug therapy.
The most effective psychotherapeutic treatment for PTSD is Eye
Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR). Extremely
briefly, EMDR is an eight-phase treatment that includes the
following actions occurring simultaneously and under supervision:
- Patient focuses inwardly on a most traumatic scene from her
- Patient focuses outwardly on their doctor’s finger, following
it back and forth with their eyes
- Patient visualizes a pre-chosen positive picture
A more detailed explanation of the treatment can be found at the
EMDR website listed in the references at the end of this article.
Parenthetically, it is interesting that the eyes are the focus of
the PTSD therapy EMDR.
Whether alien abductions occur in our physical world or not,
their effects can be real, and real devastating, to their
victims. It should be encouraging to know that help is available.
It should be hopeful to know there are ways to manage our
responses to these intrusions. It should be better still to go on
living our lives with purpose.
A short list of references:
Viktor Frankl: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Viktor_Frankl
Visit Rick Nielsen's website - http://alienabductionaccounts.blogspot.com/