Letters To The Primal Page
- Bill - 12/22/96
- Aletha - 12/31/96
- Bob - 01/22/97
- Aletha - 02/07/97
- Paul - 02/09/97
- Bonnie - 02/11/97
- Ruediger - 02/14/97
Dec 22 1996Dear John and friends,
Thanks for your Letters to the Primal Page and assorted other writings about Primal therapy on the Web. I am deeply touched to have found such a community.
I have been soul searching since I was 15 or younger, and now I am 34. When I started looking around the web for the first time this past summer, I looked up Janov whose book I was introduced to in '87 (a story in of itself), and each related site I found on the web brought me to heartfelt tears. I quickly got my hands on Stettbacher's book, (thanks to yours and Alice Miller's Reviews) and set out for a daily hour of solitude either behind the computer or with a tape recorder attempting the four step process. I found those hours to be very valuable, and they centered me from the scatteredness I normally struggle with.
I nevertheless did not keep up my daily hour of primal expression and reflection. I lasted about three wees with it. A big part of that was that I was overdosing on the serious work without alotting time for play and relaxation, and I was not communicating with others doing such work.
It has taken me some time to make my existence known in this community, and I am ready to make an attempt to dialogue with you and others. I would appreciate it if you add my e-mail address to the primal cafe and include this letter on your letters page. My intent with writing is share experiences and seek a buddy or two who I can really relate to on a regular basis via e-mail. Stettbacher's book helped me connect more deeply to my journal work, and now I want to share what I write and feel and think and go through.
Sam's idea about a newsgroup or e-mail newsletter sounds great. My wife recently joined such a group PAM (pregnancy after miscarraige) focused on sharing hopes and fears between mothers who have miscarried and are trying to have a baby again. The daily dialogue has been deeply healing for her (and me). She can e-mail anybody in the group personally or write an entry for the newsletter which is sent in a digest form daily.
I was somewhat shocked to read of Alice Miller's reversal over Stettbacher too, but she and Stettbacher alike represent for me a long line of people I have made too important. Stettbacher's book has been inspiring, but I never followed his technique to a T. I am too creative to get stuck in anybody's technique. And whether or not Stettbacher is guilty himself of abuse of his patients, I don't know. It is an upsetting thought, but even if it is true, there is a value that remains in his book.
Again John and friends, thank you for this very important page. I look forward to sharing more in the future.
Thanks for your comments, Bill. I'll get your e-mail address on the Primal Cafe's bulletin board later today. Unfortunately, there was not enough interest in Sam's suggestion to have a newsgroup. Only two expressed an interest. Perhaps, it can be done later when more people will have access to the web.
* * *
Dec 31, 1996
I found your Primal Psychotherapy page to be very interesting and full of useful information. I was pleased to see that primal therapy is alive and well! We have added a link to your web site from our own Aware Parenting web site. In your letter section (Archived Letters #4), I was pleased to see that my book, The Aware Baby, (book review) was mentioned, and in your response, you wrote that you had looked at our web site and found it interesting.
Aware Parenting is the only approach to parenting I know of that combines the concept of healing through emotional release with attachment-style parenting and non-punitive discipline. My books outline a complete approach to parenting based on this philosophy, and provide guidelines to help parents avoid passing on their own hurts to their children, and also to help children heal from early trauma and the daily stresses of life. In particular, I emphasize the importance of allowing children to cry and rage as much as they need to.
I have found that parents who have benefitted from regressive therapies (as I have) are generally fairly comfortable with their children's attempts to heal themselves through crying and raging. What surprises and pleases me, however, is that parents who have never done any kind of therapy (and this includes most of the parents in the world!) are nevertheless able to see the benefits of emotional release (both for themselves and their children) once it is pointed out to them in a non-threatening way. I think that the urge to heal is so strong that nobody has completely forgotten how to do it. I consider therapies involving emotional release to be very natural processes that happen spontaneously once people have enough encouragement and support.
I will be mailing you an article of mine that was published in the Spring 1996 issue of the Primal Renaissance Journal (Tears for Trauma: Birth Trauma, Crying and Child Abuse). It is based on a talk I gave at the last Congress of Pre- and Perinatal Psychology in San Francisco (Oct. 1995). In this article I discuss the importance of crying as a healing mechanism for babies who have experienced birth trauma. (I emphasize that babies should always be held when they cry.) There is also an article on my web site about crying in babies.
It is a well-known fact that birth-traumatized babies cry more than babies with easier births. Many parents misunderstand their babies' attempts to heal through crying, and consider these babies to be difficult and demanding. This only further contributes to the overall stress level in the home. Parents, understandably, often lose patience with fussy babies, and, in extreme cases, these babies are physically abused. In fact, most child abuse happens while children are crying. It is because of this fact that I am so motivated to help parents understand the meaning of tears and tantrums.
Aletha Solter, Ph.D.
The Aware Parenting Institute
P.O. Box 206
Goleta, CA 93116, U.S.A.
Phone & Fax: (805)968-1868
* * * January 22, 1997
Thank you for this wonderful web site. I am a former patient of the Primal Institute of Los Angeles (class of 1976). I have both good and bad things to say about my experience, but the best has always been, when I was physically ill and feeling a feeling got rid of the illness, "Thank God for Primal Therapy."
There truly has been a significant reduction in tension over the last twenty years. On the other hand, I am not in all respects the person I would have expected to be by this time. And I know, could I go back in time and tell my younger self, "This is where you'll be in twenty years," that young man would be deeply disappointed. It really is true. It takes ten times as long to get half as far as you expect to get. And it is not always fun.
There's a couple of things that strike me about the participants in your web site. First, there don't seem to be any former patients of "legitimate" primal therapy. Where might these folks be? Perhaps current patients feel no need to get on the Web. Perhaps former patients are jaded (more about that later). For years, I have had an off-and-on again desire to try to find some "primal people." I had a good friend I used to buddy with. For those who aren't familiar with the term, a primal buddy is someone who sits for you or listens to you while you do your thing (talking, crying, feeling). That friend has slipped away. I have also lost contact with others that I used to know. I miss the contact very much, and I have never really found a completely comfortable connection with the non-primal friends I've had over the years.
Some time back, the Primal Institute wanted me to come in for a "session" (at ninety bucks an hour) before they would consider giving me a buddy list. I balked at the idea. And just today, Dr. Janov's Primal Foundation was going to relieve me of one hundred fifty dollars for a "full intake interview" to determine if they would let me participate in a "mini-retreat" over the weekend. I want to think about that a little. All I'm looking for is some primal people to hang out with and/or buddy with. I was hoping to find that from your site. Does anybody know of any good primal parties coming up in Los Angeles? Yep, that's what the patients here do on the weekends.
The other thing that's interesting is the criticisms you include. I think it's great you want to provide balance. But what's missing is an article by a former therapist of the Los Angeles Institute who does not do this therapy anymore and is quite negative. I will try to get his permission to pass the article along. He wrote it in 1990. I spoke with him last November when I was going through a set of bad feelings. I wanted his input and thoughts. Has everything I've been doing for the last twenty years been wrong? I concluded from the discussion, no, it hasn't been wrong. Nonetheless, his comments were interesting. One thing he said with regard to the "session" the Institute had wanted me to do was enlightening. "Oh, yes, I used to live with [the current co-director of the Primal Institute]. I lived with him for three years. I know how he thinks. It's always the money with him, always about money." That's why I hesitate to do the intake interview at the other clinic. I wonder why I need to jump through hoops and pay a lot of money to get something simple like a buddy list.
The last time I tried to find some people, I was told by a former patient, "Oh, I have no contact with any primal people anymore. Most of the former patients I used to know got married and bought houses out near San Bernardino. They hate the therapy, and I doubt they would talk to you."
For myself, I am basically a big crybaby who thinks of the therapy as a long drawn out grieving process. At least, that is how it has been for me. I am not negative about this at all, except that the intensity of the cries makes me hesitant to get real close to non-primal folks. I would like to elaborate on that, but I fear this letter is getting a bit long. You are welcome to post this letter if you wish, and I would love to correspond with some of your other paricipants. Thanks again.
Thanks for your interesting comments and for your compliments, Bob. Yes, doing the therapy can be disappointing at times. It helps me to remember that the therapy didn't put the pain there, but the therapy process does strip away one's defenses which can have the result of, at times, causing more symptoms. Former medical director of the Primal Institute, E. Michael Holden wrote in the Fall 1977 issue of the Journal of Primal Therapy: "Within the process itself, suffering in one's life may be extreme as the real (still suffering) self gains expression and comes to awareness for resolution . . . Suffering in the Primal process does not last forever, though. Primal Pain is finite. It has a beginning, a middle, and an end . . . when the need to heal has been fulfilled." While this is not a topic which Dr. Janov very often discusses, in the foreward to a Perigee edition of The Primal Scream he acknowledges that there can be rough times during the therapy.
But in spite of the discomforts, which do arise, I have never heard of someone having regretted going into the therapy. Rather, what I often hear is "primal therapy saved my life."
Bob, I would like very much to include on the Primal Page that article from your ex-therapist friend. -- John
* * *
February 7, 1997
I have now read Stettbacher's book, Making Sense of Suffering. Aside from the fact that the translation leaves much to be desired, I found it very interesting.
I appreciated his emphasis on early trauma and abuse as the major contributing factor to mental illness, violence, addictions, unhappiness, etc. I always feel supported in my own work when I read other authors who recognize the importance of prenatal, birth, and other early trauma, and who state loudly and clearly, as does Stettbacher, that children are vulnerable and sensitive, and are easily hurt.
I liked his four steps of therapy with the progression from immediate perceptions to feelings, then to an attempt to understand, and finally to make the demands that one never made as a child. However, I found his recommended four-step process lacking in emphasis on emotional release (specifically crying and raging). He does write that his patients "cathart" in these ways, especially in group therapy, and I suspect that this would account for much of the effectiveness of his approach. But I am wondering how much emotional release would happen for people who attempt self therapy, as he recommends. Although it is important to make the link between present feelings and past events in one's life (his step 3), it seems to me that this approach runs the risk of becoming intellectual very quickly, for someone trying it alone, and one could easily get caught up in analyzing one's past rather than actually feeling and resolving it on a deep emotional level.
His step 4 is an important part of any therapy in my opinion: to state what one needed in the past, pretending to address one's parents directly, and verbalizing what was never said as a child. But again, this is probably most effective if one feels free to cry while making these demands as an adult. In the absence of a supportive listener who encourages emotional release, I wonder how effective it would be.
In his discussion of parenting, I was pleased to see that he emphasized breastfeeding, lots of love and patience, and filling children's needs. But there seemed to be no recognition whatsoever of the fact that children can heal themselves from early trauma (such as birth trauma) while they are still babies, and that parents can be extremely helpful in facilitating this process. This, of course, is what my books are all about (The Aware Baby and Helping Young Children Flourish).
Also, while recognizing that parents can be the cause of suffering and distress in their children, I would have liked to see more support for parents, and an acknowledgment of parental strengths in spite of the incredible difficulties of parenting. Parents struggle every day to avoid passing on their own hurts to their children. When parents fail, we need to take a look at how society can be more supportive of them, rather than simply blame them. I do like his recognition of the fact that it is extremely painful for parents to realize that they have hurt their children, and that, with the help of therapy, they will come to understand why they acted as they did in the past. I also agree that apologizing to one's children (in therapy) can be an important part of the therapeutic process, but again, I would think that, in order to be effective, a supportive listener would be necessary to remind the parent of his or her inherent goodness, and of the fact that any harm inflicted on one's own children is the result of one's own past hurts. Otherwise, one could become swamped with guilt feelings.
Aletha Solter, Ph.D.
The Aware Parenting Institute
P.O. Box 206
Goleta, CA 93116, U.S.A.
Phone & Fax: (805)968-1868
Dr. Solter: The concern you expressed regarding Stettbacher's lack of explanation of the emotional release which accompanies his 4-step method is a reasonable one. The reader of Making Sense of Suffering can be left with puzzlement as to exactly what is supposed to happen at the end of the fourth step. Was the explanation left out for fear of "turning off" the reader or was it an inadvertent omission? Stettbacher had planned to write a companion book with more detail, but due to the lawsuit and unfavorable publicity he has received, it unfortunately might not be published. You are correct in assuming that the emotional release - the reliving with deep feelings of one's early traumas - is what accounts for the effectiveness of the method. Almost all of the feelings are accompanied by deep sobbing as one relives both generalized and specific feelingful scenes of one's early childhood, infancy and birth.
The question of whether one should use the Stettbacher technique alone or with a witness is often discussed. My opinion is that a "witness" or "sitter" is preferable and helps access to one's repressed material.
I agree with your belief that using the 4-step method alone can result in a therapy method which can become intellectual and analytical. But, nonetheless, it works well for some. This analytical approach is used during the process of the third step of understanding and tracing the behavior or perception. Some have told me that as one becomes adept, the method can even be used while driving or having a meal in a restaurant! In such cases the affect is "stored" for later discharge.
When a connection takes place between the present feeling and the repressed trauma, one becomes flooded with memories accompanied by cathartic release. Stettbacher's 4-step method is not a superficial form of self-therapy since traumas as early as birth are experienced.
After a person has used the 4-step method for a period of time, the repressed material can enter consciousness before the fourth step is reached. However, during the beginning phase of self-therapy, this step is a necessary exercise needed to reach the repressed material. After a person has been successfully using the method over time, the steps may be consolidated. Access to one's repressed traumas can become spontaneous, e.g., watching a feelingful TV movie can trigger early childhood feelings.
Some therapists believe that apologizing to one's children is not therapeutic. They feel that it might make the parent feel better, but what does the child do with the apology? They think that it places the child into even more denial and makes him feel more guilt for being resentful and angry towards his newly insightful and apologetic parent.
Thank you for your comments - John -
* * *
February 9, 1997
I am very impressed with the Primal website that you've created. I believe that it very well could provide an extremely valuable resource to Primal people throughout the world.
My specific interest at this time is in trying to locate Primal buddies in the San Francisco Bay area. Please add my e-mail address and name to the Primal Cafe Bulletin Board when you can. I noticed that it still under construction. I have done a lot of formal therapy (Primal Institute, West L.A. & Primal Center in Venice) and attribute this therapy with saving my life, literally. I still need to buddy regularly to maintain a healthy balance.
Thanks and keep up the good work!
Paul: Thanks for your nice words. Your e-mail address will be posted in a few minutes. Paul is referring to the Primal Café, not the Self-Primalers Café! Readers can find its listing in the "What's New" section on the Primal Homepage.- John
* * *
February 11, 1997
A valuable thing has come out of this Miller/Stettbacher situation for me. After having written a letter to the Primal Page suggesting that consideration of the l978 abuse charges lodged against Stettbacher be considered a "separate matter" from consideration of the value of his book and therapy and questioning Alice Miller's motives for repudiating him, I received the Appendix -- persuasive excerpts from a DER BUND interview with the complainant.
On reading it, I was very embarrassed that I had defended use of the dark room method by therapists and had even suggested that Stettbacher start a school. I want to retract these statements and apologize to Alice Miller for having written them without first reading all the data available and also for suggesting that her primary reason for repudiating Stettbacher could be some kind of old-fashionedness rather than for these serious and, I think, probable crimes.
I wrote another letter with these sentiments in it, but, I finished, again, with a paragraph supporting the book. I sent it off to the Primal Page, went to bed and woke with a start after a prolonged and terrible nightmare about being trapped in a house with abusers and rapists. To my mind, I awoke with some much-needed sense about these charges. I considered that the way I had passed over them and then, later -- knowing them -- had persisted in spending more time on the content of the book than on the content of the charges probably meant something significant. Indeed, I thought it might be the signal response of a person with unacknowledged cruelty in their past.
With a tense feeling in the back of my head, I cast my mind over the blankness that is the memory of my early childhood. As I began writing a new letter, I found myself thinking about nightmares I'd had of my father tormenting me and especially a look on his face as it went from normal to crazy. I discharged heavily every time I "saw" his transformation. And every time I wrote about the possibility of Miller having been confronted with the same thing -- discovering the equivalent of a concentration camp torturer in someone trusted and admired -- wails and copious tears erupted out of me.
The intense part of this process took place over a period of about ten days. Because of the being-held-captive dream and the questioning of myself about why I had practically ignored Stettbacher's alleged crimes, I was able to process some almost forgotten dreams and possibly bring myself closer to remembering something important about my past. In addition, I think I gained an appreciation for what Alice Miller must have gone through. I now think I understand her response -- her almost convulsive repudiation.
There actually is value in the book, as she originally saw (for self-primallers), but, because of the unreliable sanity of therapists, it turns out there is great danger in the dark room method, and, until he gives an effective accounting of himself, continued danger that the book will garner him additional victims.
I am very sorry to have criticized Alice Miller without checking out all the evidence she had made available. I am grateful to her for giving all the sources for her thinking and the dates so we readers could make up our own minds as usual. If only some mention, even retroactively, had been made of the Jensen book introduction or a few of her other thoughts about primal therapy, a lot of fear could have been avoided. Nonetheless, I hope others will consider the possibility that they are suppressing memories of serious trauma if they are very loyal to the book and have downplayed the importance of the alleged crimes.
In spite of the fact that for many of us she is as an absolute Goddess and the mother we all longed for but never had, it is also useful to remember that she is actually a 60-something- year-old human being who, in spite of the fact that she brought an appreciation for feelings back to the sterile halls of psychology and defended it there with all the power of her very great intellect, it is possible she did not have time or opportunity to experience the effects of complete emotional discharge about this matter before responding.
From her Communication, I gather that she still doubts that in and of itself discharge is useful as I think it is. I wish the primal therapists in her life had been providing her with more cause for faith in the organic processes rather than with fear about patients showing up on their doorsteps needing help. If they had been able to do so, I believe Alice Miller would have fully processed the situation before reacting, and would not have made the mistake of rejecting every single aspect of Stettbacher's book and therapy which had the unfortunate side-effect of scaring people who were using it effectively for self-therapy.
John, I wonder if you can make the text of Miller's introduction to Jean Jensen's book available on the page along with her Communication? I think it's important to let people know her current thinking about primal therapy, that she still has qualified support for it as well as a willingness to make help available to self-therapists. I am very impressed that in spite of some fears aroused by "critically-minded primal therapists," she remains true to her vision of people helping themselves and continues to trust in her own good thinking which I am sure is being validated everyday and will be proven over time.
I am tremendously grateful to her for her persistence in supporting the self-help movement.
* * *
I'm a young man of 24 years from Germany and I would also like to send a letter to you and your fine page after having read most of the PPP and all letters.
Just before I got my own access to the Internet, I had already looked for something like regressive/ primal therapy and for something about Miller and/or Stettbacher.
What I read in Alice Millerīs Communication to my readers was not completely new to me, but I became happier by finding the opportunity to share thoughts and experiences with others engaged in self therapies, so I would like to join the discussion.
I consider the contents of my letter as a stimulation for other readers to respond to it where there is something of special importance to them as well as I intend to respond to other writerīs topics where I see the opportunity of providing with helpful suggestions. If this is going to be published on the PPP, I think it would be effective and helpful for all people looking for help in their personal self therapy processes.
In this first letter of mine I would first like to say something about my history and my experiences with the concepts of primal/regressive self therapy by Miller, Stettbacher and Jenson.
1) Parts of my history and my experiences with primal therapies
It all started five years ago when I realized - while reading Alice Millerīs "Banished Knowledge" - that there might be too much denial within my life and that it would be a good thing to start some kind of "recovery work" as suggested by Miller. At this time I was already convinced that only a therapy that is based on recovering the hidden truths of the past and on healing the unprocessed pain would be able to provide me with the relief I was unconsciously longing for.
So I started reading Stettbacherīs book four years ago. My first impression was that it had to be a wonderful therapy since it seemed to provide you with the instruments necessary to remove all the impediments of your present adult life caused by repressed events from your childhood - and all this without having to see a (conventional) therapist. However, while trying to practice the therapy upon myself, I had to realize that it was by no means as easy as I expected it to be. I had experiences similar to those other persons have told so far: It just seemed impossible for me to concentrate on the bad feelings in order to find out where they arise from and thus how to put things right again. So I tried over and over with no success, but I had no alternative to this therapy process since it would be the only one capable of relieving me effectively - that was sure. I felt that an ordinary therapist would not be able to help me. Just a functioning Stettbacher-like-therapy would be the best thing that could happen in my life, but on the other hand, failing in doing it the worst thing would happen: that I would have to die.
In the context of these assumptions I became more and more desperate. Finally, I thought of committing suicide. I started to write a letter to Stettbacher in which I elucidated my difficulties with the therapy process and in which I expressed my desperateness also in order to make him help me - it was a kind of last chance for me. But while doing so - expressing my desperate feelings - new possibilities of what I perhaps could do opened up to me. From that experience I learned that I am nevertheless able to help myself. I gained new hope and my feelings of desperateness disappeared - I had not even to mail the letter to him. Instead, I wrote a different letter to him in which I asked for some kind of support in the self help process and I received some additional and helpful information of which other readers have also told you.
In March 1995, I received the news from an acquaintance that Alice Miller had dropped supporting Stettbacher. A first I was totally puzzled about this circumstance, too. I thought: "That just cannot be true!", since that meant that Miller must have turned away in many points from what she had been convinced of before. No matter what had made Miller reject Stettbacher - or at least no longer supporting him - it seemed also that I now had to choose between her and Stettbacher. - What a strange position to be in since both seemed to be right so far. Now you yourself had to give up on one of the two of them? Fortunately I obtained the interview in the German magazine Psychologie heute, 4/95, in which Miller explained her decision, so I was able to reflect on this.
Considering all this, I was gradually inclined to believe Miller rather than Stettbacher (whereas an acquaintance still counted more on him). The reason for this might be Millerīs statement that it must always be possible to scrutinize a therapy concept - and that this was not the case in Stettbacherīs. Since I always liked Miller for her critical attitude towards any concept, I estimated that she might be right here as well and that Stettbacher overrated himself.
What was most important to me from all this was that I was no longer dependent upon Stettbacherīs concept - there would even be other and even more feasible and practicabe concepts. And this was indeed a great relief for me since up to this point I had considered Stettbacherīs concept to be the only help for me - and then I learned it did not work! But then I could give up on it without having to lose all of my hopes.
At about the same time I heard of Miller recommending an American authorīs book, Jean Jensonīs Reclaiming Your Life. What Miller wrote about her seemed to be very promising, so my friend ordered it for me - as a birthday present. I received the book within four weeks or so and it was not that difficult for me to read - I just compiled a list of unknown words to be able to look them up later too if I needed to. While reading the book, I became happy and confident about the usefulness of Jensonīs concept - the same phenomenon as experienced with Stettbacherīs book before. And also I had to realize that doing the therapy is by far less easy than you might be apt to assume at first look.
But up to now I am convinced - for several reasons - that Jensonīs concept is indeed more feasible and practicable than Stettbacherīs. Let me elucidate just one reason: In Stettbacherīs therapy you are to keep control of the situation. This just is not possible for everyone with his/her personal background of feelings, I guess. Jensonīs therapy just does not require control of the grieving experience. I feel that, in some sense, the flow of emotions is guaranteed better here.
Apart from that, both Stettbacherīs and Jensonīs books provide the reader with important information necessary for an effective self help approach based on a regressive/primal therapy. But I still tend to consider Jensonīs book the better choice, even if there are people - like Marcella - who are capable of working with Stettbacherīs concept on their own sucessfully.
2) My situation nowadays
How about me right now? Iīm familiar with Jensonīs concept now, I think, but I did not get very deep into my own therapy process yet. The problem is not that I feel I unable to proceed any further with the therapy itself as it had been the case with Stettbacherīs concept No, the problem is to concentrate on applying the therapy, for it is the defensive mechanisms that make one postpone applying the therapy - even if one has realized that it is necessary - in anticipation of the uncomfortable condition one will get into while applying the therapy. I thus have learned that it requires extra efforts - namely to confirm the willingness to do the therapy - in order to finally accomplish it. I am not that advanced with my own process as I wrote but I have experienced that I always feel better whenever I am in that mode in which I feel the necessity of using the therapy and in which I am willing to do so. I think this is because of being closer to my feelings then which are almost totally blocked out most of the time. Being closer to my real feelings makes me more alive and more optimistic, feel closer to being whole, better feeling at home in this world and so on.
This temporary positive experience also provides my defensive mechanisms with more scope for influencing me. They then suggest to me that "there is no hurry" with doing the therapy. They try to prompt me to postpone the healing but painful encounter with my past. So I have to take care not to be taken in by this temptation and try to get stuck to the therapy process and to continue with it.
I do not feel my life is at risk any longer, but I sense that it is dangerous if one hesitates too long with continuing the therapy since the feelings strive to rise from the unconscious, so you are more sensitive to your feelings as well your general abilities might be reduced by this. So if you hesitate too long you might suffer from what otherwise is not necessary - not to mention the loss of precious time of your life which is also unnecessary. Thus I have to proceed with caution! I must go on with my efforts to use this therapy, then it will work and I will not lose time or abilities - of managing my daily life effectively, f.e.!
3) My proposals to the PPP and suggested support for the individualsī healing work
Now I would like to tell you what I could offer additionally in order to support you and all readers of your PPP:
If you wish, I will send you a copy of the Interview of Alice Miller by a German psychotherapist I mentioned above (published in Psycho-logie heute", issue 4/95 where she gives reasons for her rejection of Stettbacher, in case you do not possess it already. I might even translate it, if necessary.
Also there is an article in the Swiss newsmagazine Facts I have where they report on Stettbacherīs failure and his offences and also on Millers "great mistake" in trusting Stettbacher. I do not know whether or not this is just the "appendix to Alice Millerīs Communication" you are speaking of in your PPP. If this is not the case, please send me a copy of that appendix, and I will send you Facts article.
Moreover, I could summarize the main contents of the letter I wrote to Stettbacher I also mentioned above. I also wrote a letter to Alice Miller that I have not finished yet and that also contains a lot of experiences of mine with the self therapy process as well as thoughts and reflections on primal therapy itself and on the conflict between Stettbacher and Miller and other things. For example, I somewhere demanded of a good self help concept that it must include the instruments for the reader to find out and decide whether he is able to help himself on his own or not. In the latter case, he would know early enough that he has to look for somebody qualified to help him and not to lose time trying to help himself with no chance of success and even making things worse in the end.
Last. but not least, I am compiling certain excerpts from Jensonīs book at the moment. What I intend to do is to extract and to compile all the steps necessary in order to get into a functioning self help process. This list of steps is in a sense the frame of Jensonīs book that might help one (including me) to orientate at any time and to find back towards the healing process whenever one has stepped off the "right track".
Well, this should be enough for the moment. I am looking forward to the further communication with you/your page and all interested readers. I would appreciate a reaction of yours or of any reader of the PPP, and also I myself will respond to other readersī letter whenever I find that I can give suggestions or encouragement of any kind.
So please publish my letter within your PPP and put my Email address on the bulletin board of the Cafe.
My Email address: Ruediger.Otto@giessen.netsurf.de * * *
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