Rape counselling

Rape Counselling: a less painful, more effective approach. This is a link to an article I have just written for the MindFully Well website https://mindfullywell.ie/rape-counselling/ on a more effective, less painful approach to rape counselling. The alternative approach used is the same as used by a UK charity with army veterans suffering from PTSD. You can read more about it here: PTSD Resolution I have worked with many survivors, both male & female, of rape & sexual abuse & have found that the approach described in the article is very effective in reducing distress & symptoms quickly ( such as anxiety, sleeplessness, flashbacks etc.) & that it is a relatively comfortable process as the client is kept in a relaxed state throughout (using a combination of relaxation techniques). There are also different ways of achieving the same results, in cases were someone has difficulty with relaxation or visualization. In these cases I have found that it is possible to use toys to help the person stay relaxed whilst recalling what happened. This allows the amygdala and hippocampus in the person’s brain to reprocess the traumatic memories and recode them as being in the past. The memory then becomes a “normal” bad memory and the triggering that these experiences usually cause becomes much reduced or, in some cases, disappears. This is because what we call triggers are in fact sensory memories from the trauma that are trapped in the Amygdala’s Sensory Store, separate from the rest of the memory. The symptoms of anxiety, fear and panic are generated because the Amygdala uses the stored sensory memories as templates warning that...

Love shouldn’t hurt: when to say “Goodbye”

A lot of my work is with people who want to fix a relationship in difficulty- & for a lot of people & in a lot of situations that is very do-able & the relationship is worth saving. But I’ve also worked with people who are struggling to leave an abusive situation- men & women both. Some relationships are better let go. Some are corrosive & toxic & exhaust you & get you down. When emotional blackmail is involved the relationship can pull you both down. And when children are involved the situation can be even more damaging & difficult to manage for all involved. Unfortunately, some people are abusive  – physically &/or emotionally. It is sometimes hard to be clear-when you are on the receiving end of abuse & in the thick of it-whether a relationship is worth saving or not. So how do you know? Signs that you should go 1) The basis of a healthy relationship is friendship & respect. In the best relationships people are gentle with each other. Love shouldn’t hurt. It shouldn’t make you feel bad. It shouldn’t drain your energy & make you sad. 2) The other person has to want to be in the relationship as much as you do. This may seem obvious, but if the person you are involved with is not committed to the relationship or is clearly saying that they don’t want to be in a relationship with you- & in this actions speak as loudly as words-there is no future in pursuing it-you will only get hurt. 3) Pay attention to how you feel- what is...

The most common myth about relationships

The most common myth about relationships is that good communication is the key to better relationships. Now don’t get me wrong, good communication is important, but good communication is actually a sign of more fundamental things being right whereas poor communication is actually a symptom of more fundamental things going wrong. In a relationship that is working, the communication is good because both people feel supported, cared for & loved. When a relationship is working it is easy to communicate well – as we all know, if we think back to when we first met, when communication seemed so easy! In the early days of a relationship, when both people have positive expectations & experiences of the relationship, most couples can communicate well. That creates a positive spiral effect were people are relaxed & happy talking to each other because they are confident that their partner will listen & engage with them positively about the things that are on their mind & that are important to them. This happens naturally at the beginning of relationships because people usually feel supported & appreciated,at that time, by the other person. In long-term relationships that work well, that continues to be the pattern & there continues to be a positive spiral of positivity with both people feeling supported and cared for & seeing & appreciating the good in each other. So when there is conflict, as there always is, at some level in relationships, it quickly fizzles out. It is as if, even in the midst of an argument, each partner, in the back of their mind has a little voice saying -hey-let’s...

Radio interview “How to improve your relationship”

http://www.annmarietaylor.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Relationships-radio-interview_2_1_2_1_1.mp3 This interview is of Ann Marie Taylor by Derry O’Malley for Limerick Community Radio. It wasbroadcast on 6th February 2015 on their regular Sunday “Headspace” programme.  ...