A single mum was referred to me by a psychologist and presenting with a very unhappy (9 year old) boy suffering bed wetting, anxiety and also coming from a domestic violent family situation. B had started bedwetting when he was 5 which became worse at the age of 7 when their family separated and his father moved out with his new partner. ‘B’ has two brothers, one older, age 12 (mum describing him as very angry with violent outbursts like his father) and the other younger, age 7 (mum describing him as very withdrawn, quiet and anxious). Neither of the other brothers had bedwetting problems. Mum wanted to specifically start working with her 9 year old child, B, to help address the bedwetting straight away. Mum described the family situation as very toxic, creating difficulty in communicating with the boys’ father. Visitation had been granted for the father to see his boys once a fortnight on the weekend. Mum described ‘B’s father has very aggressive towards ‘B’ but not to the other boys and she felt this was probably due to ‘B’ being most like his mother in mannerism and appearance. Mum described the father as aggressive, violent and intimidating; making it very challenging to get the father involved and participate in the Sleep Talk for Children process (we found another way to work around this). The other challenge was that mum noticed whenever the boys returned from their fathers’ place, they would start acting out and their behaviour was out of control (fights, violent outbursts), which took at least 2 days to return to some kind of normality. Mum also described herself as being extremely anxious and hypervigilant but felt it more important to work with her boys first and then she would make steps to help herself.
We commenced the Sleep Talk for Process and within six weeks ‘B’s bedwetting had reduced down significantly by 70% and ‘B’ was demonstrating less levels of anxiety by behaving in a much more relaxed way around people. As we progressed through the Sleep Talk for Children process, it wasn’t until it was 2 months down the track that mum had noticed the older boy was starting to show signs of less aggression. At first this didn’t make sense because she was only working with ‘B’, however, apparently the boys bedrooms were all next to each other and the eldest, we will call him ‘A’ had been listening to mum implement the process through his bedroom wall. It wasn’t until a few weeks later on, ‘A’ approached mum and asked mum if he could do the same thing for him as she was doing for 9 year old ‘B’. This encouraged mum, even though she was exhausted, to start Sleep Talk with ‘A’ the 12 year old and also the youngest, 7 year old boy. As mum progressed through implementing the Sleep Talk for Children process for all boys an incredibly amazing family transformation took place.
The end result; ‘B’ 9 year old boy stopped bedwetting altogether!! B became more confident and settled. While mum was extremely impressed with this, it was actually the 12 year old she was over the moon about because she had not expected his behaviour to turn around and change completely at all from aggressive outbursts to confident, happy pre-teen. Her 12 year old ‘A’ started taking pride in himself, his self-esteem and confidence increased and his behaviour flipped over into a calmer and much more mature outlook. Mum described ‘A’ as feeling much better about himself and being the man of their house. His violent outbursts stopped completely and mum watched him change completely on so many levels. The outcome is one of the most amazing ones I have seen in my time as a Sleep Talk practitioner and to see 3 boys plus a mum turn everything around within 3 months is just one short of a miracle in my book! Everyone in the family is happier and calmer within the family home and within themselves. The youngest became more confident and settled and his anxiety levels reduced. While the fathers’ home environment remained quite toxic, we came up with a helpful strategy to continue the sleep talk process. Mum recorded her voice so the boys could to listen to her voice while they were at their fathers’ place.
Under the current circumstances, the visitation continues to have many challenges and while the boys continued to return from their fathers’ place in a more anxious state to begin with, as time progressed, they were all able to become more self-regulating with their emotions and quickly settled back into mum’s environment without it getting out of hand and at a much more manageable level than ever before.
After all of these outstanding changes mum felt ready to have some hypnotherapy for her own anxiety and hypervigilance. Mum’s changes also impacted on the boys in a very positive way. As mum improved throughout her sessions, this also created an even calmer environment for the entire family. Her boys reacted and responded to mum in a calmer settled way again.
Most importantly, the boys and mum feel much more stability, safety and confidence within themselves in mums’ home, giving them a nice feeling of security.
Nicole Lane – Accredited Consultant