Most, if not all, problems in young children (and in later life!) originate in family life. The difficulty for us here is that most parents are often unaware of the part they play in this, for, like most of us when faced with unpleasant facts, we are reluctant to admit to our own responsibility. A parent of a distressed child often has unresolved issues around being a parent which may well be, and usually is, the prime reason for disturbance in the child. I have some very good examples of this from my own practice which have reinforced my conviction that if only I could treat the mother, the young child would probably not need treatment. This conviction, and often my experiences of failing to help the child, have reinforced my increasing reluctance over the years to treat young children.
I was fortunate that I was able to take the first two children I was asked to treat to see JR Worsley. This was at a very early stage in my practice, when I did not know how I should approach treating them. The first child was a young boy of about 3, who was said by his mother to be completely out of control. He would only let his mother touch him, refused to relate to anybody else and had been given a provisional diagnosis of autism. His mother and I had to drag him kicking and screaming from the car to the practice room, where JR, after looking at him quickly, told me to carry out the AE drain, despite his loud protests, with his mother and me holding him firmly on my lap. As I recall there was no AE, although I have since often found a surprising amount of AE in even the youngest child.
JR diagnosed the element as Wood, and told me to follow the AE drain with the source points on Wood on the left side only. To my surprise, shortly after the treatment, the young boy suddenly fell quiet, turned his head to look at me and kept eye contact as I walked away, something he had not done with any of us before. I interpreted this as the Wood element diffusing his terrible sense of anger. From then on, for the few treatments he continued to come to me once a fortnight for the simple five element command point treatment JR had recommended, he would run happily to greet me as though he enjoyed his treatments. Nobody would then have diagnosed him as other than a normal little boy.
Sadly, however, I was only allowed to treat him a few more times. JR had pointed out that I should do possession treatment on the mother, luckily a patient of mine, something I had not yet noted, but very shortly afterwards, the mother abruptly stopped treatment for both herself and her child. The child’s father, who was very happy with my continuing to treat his son, explained his wife’s decision to stop treatment by the fact that she was very disturbed to think that I might think that she was the cause of the child’s problems, something she denied totally. He himself could see that she was much too possessive of the child, but could do little to persuade her to allow me to continue treating their child.
I had similar experiences with two other mothers, both of whom, though ostensibly wanting help for their young children, refused to acknowledge that there was anything in their own attitudes to their children which might be contributing to the problem, and both quickly discontinued the child’s treatment very early on despite quite clear evidence that it was helping.
Of course, other practitioners may have had happier experiences of treating children than I have had, and their experiences may well be with less complex mother-child relationships than mine have been. I’m sure, too, that much can be done to help young children deal with whatever problems, psychological or physical, they come to you with simply by trying hard to diagnose the element by means of any information you can glean, then doing an AE drain and basic five element treatment.
I am happy, though, that I can finish this blog with a rather lovely story of the successful treatment of a young child, though I never saw the child or inserted a single needle. A patient of mine had an 18 month-old daughter who had suddenly started to suffer from asthma. Could I do something to help, she asked me. With some of the unhappy experiences I had had in mind, I was at first reluctant to do so, but then I put on my five element hat, and asked myself. “Why would a little baby develop asthma? Why would its Metal element be in such distress?” Metal, being the element of our relationship to our father, I asked whether anything had recently changed at home, particularly in relation to the child’s father. She told me that he had joined a golf club, and was now away from home for much of the weekend. Before this, the whole family had had happy weekends doing things together. I talked through the needs of the Metal element with both father and mother, and suggested that the father should make every effort to be with the child as much as he could, perhaps sacrificing some golf for his child’s sake. This was rather a long shot on my behalf, and I wasn’t very optimistic that this would help.
To the father’s credit he did this, and even I was surprised when the mother told me that, after a few weeks of increased attention from the father, the child’s asthma started to improve, and eventually disappeared altogether. And this without the need for any medication, or any needles. Here both parents had enough insight into family relationships and were open to listening to advice, something which is unfortunately rather rare, as we know.