I am a bit concerned that many people here have jumped to the conclusion that this might be some form of spirit/entity.
Unlike some I have trained in spirit release therapy, originally from William Baldwin and Edith Fiore and more recently Cal Banyan.
And although having experience with this therapy this wouldn't be my first assumption.
Again we go back to Occam's Razor.
What's the simplest explanation?
It's a kinesthetic hallucination....
Which can often be the symptom of an undiagnosed mental illness.
So as we are talking about a 19 year old man with a history of stressful events, anxiety AND who has IBS, which can often be linked with psychosis and schizophrenia I would suggest that you refer this young man out.
If this is the case bringing up the subject of entities/spirits could make a bad situation worse.
Rather than assuming EITHER that there IS an entity or IS NOT an entity involved, you could call out that part most closely connected to the client's perception of God or Higher Power, and simply ask for words of Divine Wisdom. If the client's Higher Power part says it is an entity, then ask for instructions on how to release it. This approach has worked for me for over three decades.
The original post said this client seemed to need work with his conscious mind. Yet the entire thread has been filled with discussion and techniques about the subconscious and the supernatural.
What about normalizing the client's experience? Discuss/demonstrate how both negative and positive hallucinations occur in each of our senses all the time, even without hypnosis. Help the client to recognize his ability to distinguish what's real and what's just generated by the mind as part of the human experience. Let him leave your office with the understanding that his emotions are a real time reflection of his thinking, and his thinking has been filled with made up stories about what this very natural phenomenon might mean. He'll get insight into letting his mind settle down, as is its natural wont, so in turn his emotions will be calmer. The sensations will go away on their own too once he stops making up stories about them.
I simply refer back to my initial post. Seeking any kind of so-called spirit release - at this point - would hardly appear to be client centred.
One option would be to clarify where inside this 'thing' is thought to be. Are we talking about under the skin, or in the gut?
It makes a difference.
Graham, Barry, Dave - Thanks for some balanced thoughts about this. Looks to me either the person is very anxious and his cognitive distortions are reinforcing negative thought patterns ( the diagnosis of IBS and also anxiety since young age point to this being more likely) or he is really becoming paranoid. A psychiatric consultation and some normalizing conversations would really help. While agreeing to the presence of an entity might seem like client-centered on the surface, it might end up doing a disservice to the client by supporting his cognitive distortions. Instead asking him for alternate explanations that are normal ( Occam's razor as Barry pointed out) and then supporting those might be beneficial overall. What we need to do is increase the client's psychological flexibility and also being grounded in reality. In cases of psychosis even parts therapy might precipitate adverse reactions. It might be interesting to see what is happening after the parts therapy. Matthew, any addiction history?
Obviously, there is a deep lack of "awareness" regarding the issues at hand. "Labels" are simply verbal constructs that "attempt" to define what is observed. "Knowing" is an absurdity. Nonetheless, this presenting issue is what it is. And, what works to remedy this matter remains unchanged.
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