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EFT Tapping Reduces Fear in a Child with Down Syndrome

The Child Whisperer book


By Miriam Avraham

I have been reading the EFT newsletter and watching your DVDs for a few months now and feel like a wonderful door has been opened to me.

I have a lovely 11-year-old daughter with mosaic Down syndrome who is very high functioning and a pure delight. Adina has developmental delays and learning disabilities, but I feel that her emotional difficulties are her “core” issue.

I had been learning EFT and had done some surrogate tapping for a few months on Adina with great success for mild physical ailments like stomachaches. I had also used it for getting her through situations where she gets “stuck.” She can be all ready to walk to school and suddenly she’ll stand stock-still and refuse to budge for any number of reasons: her father put cucumbers in her sandwich; she doesn’t want to wear the shirt she’s wearing, etc.

I will ask her if she wants to do EFT and she always agrees. Then I will ask her what she wants me to tap for.  In the cucumber situation, she’ll say with fury, “I don’t like cucumbers with cheese!” So we’ll tap for that and, while I’m tapping, she’ll start talking and bring in a solution like, “I can take the cucumbers out.” After I finish one round of tapping, I’ll ask her if she will take out the cucumbers in school and she’ll say yes. Her face and body relax and she is able to move on both emotionally and physically. We can now go to school.

In the past, these situations could take up to 45-60 minutes to resolve. I found that the only strategy that worked was just to leave her to it and go about my business. She would eventually come up with the solution and be ready to move on. These situations could sometimes be very emotionally charged. I don’t always have 45 minutes to wait until Adina comes around and realizes she can take out the cucumbers! EFT did away with all the tension between us surrounding these situations that would come up almost every day.

Adina has some very intense fears. The biggest one is her fear of doctors. My husband and I are convinced that this developed from her traumatic experiences having an annual blood test she must have to monitor her thyroid condition. In recent years, she would carry on from the moment I told her we had to go to do the blood test. She would be obsessed with the fear of the blood test.

We would have to physically carry and drag her into the clinic and my husband would hold her down while the nurse would draw the blood. This became a traumatic event for everyone involved and especially for Adina. As a result, she refuses to let any doctor touch her and is terrified of all medical professionals.

When we had to do the blood test last summer, I had been learning EFT for a few months and decided to use it to try to ease her fears. We surrogate tapped for: fear of needles, fear of being touched, trauma of previous blood tests, being offended at being held down, and the physical pain of being held down.

I sat in the back of the car with her on the way to the clinic and we constantly tapped on these things. She remained calm and in good spirits throughout the car ride and into the waiting room. We had to wait only a few minutes. (I had called ahead and spoken to the clinician who came recommended as the fastest needle around.)

Throughout this time, Adina was calm, although while waiting, she became a bit nervous. When we entered the room where the blood test is done and she saw the equipment, she got significantly more nervous. All this while I was tapping and changing my wording to describe what she was seeing. She was too uptight to cooperate and give me the language.

My husband held her in his lap and though she sat willingly, she got very agitated. We told the clinician to just do the blood test. The minute Adina saw the blood leaving her arm and going into the tube, she became hysterical. (I hadn’t thought of the aspect of her watching the blood leave her body and now realize that is a huge aspect for her.) In one minute, it was over and we continued tapping to calm her down.

While this may sound like a horrible experience, it’s a great improvement over previous years. I would be happy for input about how to overcome these fears completely. I think I might have psychological reversal and secretly believe that Adina can never go through this blood test without hysteria and trauma.

I felt that the EFT had helped enormously in lowering Adina’s fears and anxiety beforehand. While I dread the next blood test, I feel challenged to find the path to neutralizing Adina’s fears through EFT.

Meanwhile, we use EFT on a regular basis and she loves the process and has become able to identify her feelings and express them better as a side benefit. When I ask her if she wants to do EFT, she nods and immediately comes over to me to hug me while I tap for her. People with Down syndrome are exceptionally intuitive and I feel that this is why Adina accepts the process so readily and responds so well to it.

This technique is an amazing gift.