Using EFT with a Breast Cancer SurvivorHeal Your Body book by Louise Hay


By Deborah Miller, PhD

EFT has been a wonderful tool to help my friend Elia over the past two years deal with being a breast cancer survivor. It has helped her get past her fears and doubts as well as physical discomfort during and after treatments. She is delighted with how much EFT has helped her. I enjoy how EFT can be used as a long-term remedy with results that help my friend stay cancer-free.


Two years ago, Elia found out she had breast cancer. She had no symptoms or indications until one day she dropped something on the floor and bent over to pick it up while sitting in a chair with side arms. She noticed a pain in her right breast when she leaned over the arm of the chair. She went to the doctor the following day. Over the following week, studies were done. Elia was told she had breast cancer, ductal carcinoma. The tumor was 3.8 x 3 x 3 cm (or 1.50 x 1.18 x 1.18 inches).

She was traumatized by the news. She chose to have the surgery immediately instead of trying any alternatives. We did use EFT to help her with the emotional issues that came up around having breast cancer, losing her breast, fear of dying, of being disfigured, and more. We have done EFT many times. I’ll share a few incidents to show how helpful it has been.

We began with her fears:

  • Fear of having cancer
  • Fear of dying
  • Fear of the surgery
  • Fear of the implications to her life
  • Would she survive?
  • How would they pay for the surgical costs and treatments?
  • Would she need to have chemotherapy?
  • How would her family react?
  • How would her husband react to her after the mastectomy?
  • Would she feel disfigured?
  • Would she feel like a woman still?
  • Would she be able to work again?
  • What would everyone say?
  • How do you explain to everyone you have/had cancer?

These are just some of the many topics we addressed.

We spent time looking at the symbolisms according to Louise L Hay, of breasts (nurturing and nourishment, giving life, mothering, femininity, and sexuality), problems with breasts (putting others first, overmothering, overprotecting, and not taking care of self), cancer (deep hurts and old resentments, or old grief or secrets eating away at the self, hatred), and tumors (nursing old hurts and building remorse).

Then we looked at Elia's life to determine if anything fit her personal profile:

  • Where had she given too much?
  • Did her family expect too much of her?
  • Did she give because she desired to, felt obliged to, had been taught to, or because she wanted something in return and this was the way she knew how to ask for it?
  • Why did she feel she had to nurture without being nurtured?
  • Does she still feel feminine?
  • What happened in her past to hurt her?
  • Which hurts is she still nursing and retriggering?
  • Where does she feel she has to be right?
  • Where does she not feel heard? By whom? When?

The majority of her life she has given her all to her family, then realized that they came to expect it and not appreciate it completely, or in ways that she didn’t feel acknowledged. They rarely volunteered to help her with things around the house. She had to request that they do even the simplest chores and she didn’t like to ask. She gave without the expectation of return, but wished for it. Then there were the worries about work. Would there be enough to pay all the bills including college tuition? Would there be enough clients? We tapped on all of these things, some before and some after the surgery.

After the surgery, we tapped on her healing process going quickly and smoothly. We tapped on any fears of recovering, and how this cancer had affected the lives of all of them. We tapped on her physical appearance—especially after the first time she saw her scar in the mirror accidentally while it was still red and swollen.

Later we tapped to help with the physical recovery of the mobility of her right arm. The doctors removed tendons, ligaments, and ganglions in the right armpit as a precaution, but it reduced her mobility.

The arm improved. Her mobility improved. Her confidence improved. Her vitality improved. Her range of motion now is almost complete.

Elia didn’t receive traditional chemotherapy or radiation, but she received hormone treatments as a preventative. The hormone injections were utilized to mimic menopause, which was used to prevent the return of the tumor. These injections were in the abdomen below the navel; they were painful. Every time she went for the injection, she felt fear, then the pain. Afterward, she felt physical exhaustion from the treatment. These treatments went on for six months. Every month, we tapped to release whatever emotional and/or physical symptom arose. She always felt relief.

Another incident for tapping arose the first time she went to visit her home village for her mother’s 80th birthday. She was embarrassed to go because everyone knew she had had cancer. She wasn’t sure what to say or how to act. We tapped on all of those fears. In fact, it was enjoyable to watch her interacting with everyone and see the surprise on their faces for how healthy she looked.

Another milestone arose when she reached the first anniversary of being a breast cancer survivor. She wanted to discuss it, to acknowledge it, yet no one in her family wanted to talk about it. She needed to do so to help her recognize what an accomplishment it was. Her family’s fear wouldn’t let them discuss it. They wanted to put “it” behind them and forget it. She felt frustrated and hurt that no one wanted to listen to her. Since she is my friend, we talked about it. I gave her a bouquet of flowers to celebrate her health, and we tapped. She was ready to carry on.

Recently, we used EFT on her body’s reaction to a new treatment of zoledronic acid, which is used to prevent the release of calcium from bones. The first time she went without doing any EFT beforehand. She had a fever and felt nauseous, headachy, and overall horrible for two days.

Afterward we tapped on her emotions related to this treatment. This time Elia called me beforehand. This was a big step for her because asking isn’t easy for her. She said she felt fine, but I could see that her body looked tense and stiff. She said nothing was up, that she felt calm and relaxed. So we started tapping on having to go to the doctor and get the treatment, that even though she felt superficially calm and didn’t feel that anything was wrong, that there was something hidden, something she didn’t want to see. There was something she didn’t want to know or feel. Tears welled up in her eyes. We continued tapping on not knowing what it was, meanwhile releasing her fears. I instinctively stated that her worry was that she didn’t know what the doctors would find. Would they tell her she was still healthy or that the cancer had returned?

After the round she said, “You’re right. I’m always tense and anxious when I have a doctor’s appointment until they tell me again that everything is okay.” That has been her fear. We tapped on her being healthy, that the appointments were really to make the doctors feel comfortable and assured. She was already healthy. It was just a confirmation. Her health didn’t depend on the doctors, but on herself. They were only confirming her health. She could be comfortable before, during, and after a consultation with the doctor. She is healthy. That is her choice.

She felt so relieved. She went for her treatment and had absolutely no reaction. She was completely fine.

Elia recently marked the second anniversary of her being a breast cancer survivor. She knows that she still has fears come up but now has EFT to help her release them. She is pleased with how healthy she feels and grateful for EFT’s role in her life. So am I because my friend is still here with me.

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