From Conception to the End of the First Hour
Note: In the descriptions below, "Typical Body Movement" refers to the type of movement usually seen in a group or individual session where the person is re-living this trauma. This is to help the group leader or therapist recognise what the person is going through, since all these traumas are pre-verbal.
I. CONCEPTION TRAUMA = First Union
Also terms: "conception shock" by Fodor and Peerbolte.
Duration: Sperms travel from the cervix to the outer end of the Fallopian tube in less than one hour. Unfertilized egg survives about 12 hours, sperms live up to 72 hours.
Major Psychological Characteristic: Psychosomatic energy is directed toward either:
Negative indications: Body does NOT assume foetal position
Legs NOT used to PUSH
Biology: "The ovaries of the new-born female contain approximately 80,000 ova, which is many more than she will require during her reproductive life. During each menstrual cycle about 250 ova commence to develop, but usually only one is destined to be properly ripened and shed in the middle of the cycle. A developing ovum lies within a small cyst known as a Graafian follicle which gradually enlarges and migrates towards the surface of the ovary. When it is fully ripe it bulges as a dome shaped protuberance from the surface of the ovary, measuring almost half an inch in diameter. The actual rupture of the follicle seems to be a natural conclusion to the gradual enlargement of the cyst-like swelling. The follicular fluid contained within the cyst is spilt into the abdominal cavity carrying the tiny delicate ovum into the fimbriated end of the Fallopian tube, The fimbria help to collect and guide the fluid and the ovum into the tube where fertilization takes place. The muscular wall of the Fallopian tube contracts and relaxes rhythmically so that fluid is drawn into it. The minute cells lining the inner surface contain specialized hair-like structures known as cilia which wave in unison and help to move fluid along."Gordon Bourne, Pregnancy , London: Pan Books, 1975 (paperback) p. 42-43 Note: The release of the egg from the ovary may also be viewed as the "first split"(rather than reductive cell division) but only Peerbolte reports patients attempting to regress back -to the ovary.
"The actual mechanism of penetration of the ovum by the sperm is not known. It is believed that the sperm makes head-on contact with the ovum and gradually penetrates the wall of the ovum by virtue of its hard-swimming velocity." Bourne, ibid., p. 61Degree of Trauma: Correlates negatively with degree conception /child) wanted by (1) mother and (2) father.
Example: A planned child who is conceived in orgiastic union should experience little or no conception trauma (conception shock). Exception - a father can desire conception as part of an attack on the mother.
Major Writers: Isadore Sadger, "Preliminary Study of the Psychic Life of the Foetus and the Primary Germ", Psychoanalytic Review, Vol. 28, No. 3 (July 1941).
Nandor Fodor, New Approaches to Dream Interpretation, New Hyde Park, NY: University Books,1951,Chapter 3.
M. Lietaert Peerbolte, Psychic Energy in Prenatal Dynamics, Wassenaar, Holland: Service Publishers (Zijeweg 5A), 1975, Chapters 3, 8, 13, 14.
II. TRAUMA ASSOCIATED WITH NORMAL REDUCTIVE CELL DIVISION WHILE TRAVELLING THROUGH THE FALLOPIAN TUBE = First Splittings
Duration: First six days after conception.
Biology: Immediately after fertilization the fertilized egg enters the fimbriated (bordered with hairs) end of the Fallopian tube (or fertilization occurs within the Fallopian tube).
Each tube is approximately four inches long and about a quarter of an inch thick.
The tubes consist of a fairly thick muscular coat surrounding a very complex inner lining, or mucous membrane, which secretes special material to nourish the fertilized egg. Fertilized egg sub-divides into two and the two cells split again for seven days. Four days after conception a cystic space appears in the centre of the morula (up to about 32 cells) and it is then called blastocyst. The cells around the outer surface of the blastocyst continue to multiply and by the seventh day have formed sprout-like projections called chorionic villi.
Major Writer: Peerbolte, ibid., Chapter 8
III. IMPLANTATION TRAUMA = Second Union
Also Termed: "incomplete embedding", "postconceptional menstruation" and "threat of abortion" by Peerbolte.
Duration: Seventh day after conception.
Major Psychological Characteristic: is directed toward:
The resistance experienced by the ovum in people regressed to this trauma is either due to white corpuscles sent by the mother's body to resist the invasion of the fertilized egg (because the wall of the uterus apparently does not have any means to distinguish a fertilized egg from a foreign body) and/or the mother's attempt to abort implantation through internal secretions. Focus is on the 'skin' of both the fertilized egg and the uterus.
Negative indications: Body does NOT assume foetal position. Legs NOT used to PUSH.
Biology: "The cells around the outer surface of the blastacyst continue to multiply and by the seventh day have formed sprout-like projections called chorionic villi which will immediately embed the blastocyst in whatever tissue it finds itself." Bourne, ibid., p. 61
"About 7 to 9 days after conception, when there are several hundred cells, the thicker or embryonic end of the sphere makes contact with the uterus, usually with the back wall, This contact is not casual, since the blastocyst appears to be 'glued' to the wall. Soon it vigorougly erodes through the uterine lining as though it were an invading parasite intent on nesting down for the next nine months. The uterus at first reacts to this invasion of the blastocyst as it would to the presence of an intruder. The lining tissues actively swell outward to engulf the embryo, and at the same time marshal thousands of white blood cells to clean up any debris. Then resistance turns to welcome. The blood vessels of the uterus become greatly engorged with blood, the lining glands secrete their fluids more actively, and the uterine tissues seem to make a place for the embryo - some tissues even form a protective cordon around the embryo.Degree of Trauma: Correlates negatively with:
IV. TRAUMA ASSOCIATED WITH NORMAL EMBRYOLOGICAL DEVELOPMENT = Second (overlapping) Splittings
Also Termed: "Basic Perinatal Matrix I" by Grof.
Duration: Approximately nine months in womb.
Degree of Trauma: Some degree of trauma may be inherent in normal splitting. On the other hand, some people report pleasure during what may be memory of the splitting during normal embryological development.
A. Development of Internal Sensation (in addition to sensation on the 'skin' of the embryo)
Major Psychological Characteristic: Senses develop on the surface of internal organs. One of the first systems to develop sensations is the gastro-intestinal tract from mouth to anus.
Biology: By the end of the third week after conception the fertilized egg is "approximately 2 mm in length (visible to the naked eye). The foetus, within the newly formed amniotic sac, is beginning to take shape into its major component parts. The spine is beginning to form and a rudimentary nervous system is just recognisable.11 Bourne, ibid., p. 66
B. Development of the Nervous System
Major Psychological Characteristic: Both external ('skin') and internal sensations are transmitted to the newly formed brain.
Biology: During the fourth week after conception, "the rudimentary brain is completed and a spinal column as well as a spinal cord is properly formed". Bourne, ibid., p. 66
C. Development of the Reproductive System
D. Development of the Circulatory System
Circulatory System includes the embryo, umbilical cord and placenta.
Major Psychological Characteristic: Energy is experienced as flowing to and from the placenta via the cord as a unitary system.
Biology: By the end of the fourth week after conception "the first simple rudimentary heart and circulation are beginning to function. Blood vessels are forming in the umbilical cord." Bourne, ibid., p. 66
By the end of the fifth week, the heart has started to beat. (The foetus is approximately 1.3 cm.)
By the end of the tenth week after conception. "the chorionic villi at the site of the original implantation develop with immense speed to form the placenta (or afterbirth), while the chorionic villi over the remainder of the embryo gradually shrivel and die." Bourne, ibid., p. 81
After the twelfth week after conception, a proper placenta is formed.
"The placenta is responsible for the selective transfer to the foetus of oxygen and other necessary substances as well as removal from the foetus of its waste products. Everything that is required for the growth and maturation of the foetus must pass the placenta, so the placenta is responsible for the passage of not only oxygen, but also carbohydrates, fatty acids, protein, complicated amino acids, vitamins and essential elements such as calcium. Excretion products from the foetus are absorbed into the maternal circulation and some of these, sucb as carbon dioxide, are exhaled by the mother from her lungs, whilst others such as urea are excreted by her kidneys," Bourne, ibid., p. 82
Major Writer: Peerbolte, ibid., Chapter 4
E. Development of the Brain
The brain splits into at least three sub-systems:
Major Writers: Ronald Melzack, The Puzzle of Pain, NY & Harmondsworth (Middlesex, England): Penguin, 1973, pp. 96-103
Paul MacLean, "The brain in relation to empathy and medical education", Journal of Nervous and Mental Diseases, Vol. 144, ps. 374-382. Reprints available from the author: 9916 Logan Ave.,Potomac, MD 20854.
Arthur Janov, The Primal Man,London:Abacus,1975 (paperback)
Francis Mott, Universal Design of Creation,1965 Available from the author: Mark Beech, Edenbridge, Kent, England.
V. UTERINE TRAUMAS (abnormal)
Degree of Trauma: By definition, all abnormal uterine experiences are traumatic. For example, the suicide of a grandparent is especially traumatic to the foetus. Likewise, an attempted abortion performed by the father.
Major Writer: Nandor Fodor, In Search of the Beloved, NY: University Books, 1949
VI. BIRTH TRAUMA = Third Major Splitting Also Termed: "Basic Perinatal Matrix II and III" by Grof.
Major Psychological Characteristic: Psychosomatic energy is directed toward breaking out of (motherts womb).
Birth may also be viewed from the mother's viewpoint (while identified with the mother) and also the grandmother's viewpoint (while mother relives identification with her mother during her own birth).
Biology: "The reason why labour starts is not known although there is today an increasing amount evidence to show that the foetus, or the placenta (which is under the control of the foetus), produces the hormone which leads to the onset of labour, and thereafter controls the course of labour." Bourne, ibid., p. 331
Degree of Trauma: Correlates positively with the degree of mutual cooperation between mother and foetus which is determined by many factors, such as:
Writers: Otto Rank, Trauma of Birth, (1923) NY & London7-Harper & Row, 1973 (paperback)
Fodor, ibid., (both books)
Peerbolte, ibid., Chapters 1, 2
Ashley Montague, Touching, NY & London: Harper & Row, 1978 (paperback) (2 ed)
Stanislav Grof, Realms of the Human Unconscious, NY: E.P. Dutton & Co., Inc., 7975 (paperback)
VII. UMBILICAL TRAUMA (Part of birth trauma during BPM IV)
Also Termed: "umbilical shock" by Peerbolte.
Cutting of the umbilical cord and loss of placenta is experienced as a loss of a 'twin' or part of the foetal self'.
The placenta reaches maturity at approximately the thirty-second week after conception, after which it slowly undergoes very mild ageing, degenerative process. The placenta weighs approximately 1 1/4 lb. at term, or about one-sixth of the baby's weight.
Major Writers: Peerbolte, ibid., Chapter 4
VIII. MATERNAL-INFANT BONDING INSTINCT TRAUMA = Third Union
Duration: First hour after birth.
Occurs during first hour after birth unless infant and mother are drugged or in physiological shock due to a difficult delivery and/or routine hospital procedure such as insertion of silver nitrate in infant's eyes, bright lights, loud sounds and/or rapid separation of infant and mother.
Major Characteristics: Psychosomatic energy is directed toward re-establishing psychosomatic contact with mother outside the womb via:
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