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Animals

General

EFT for profound grief at losing a pet -- finding a core issue

EFt Tapping Outdated ImageNote: This is one of 3,000 articles written prior to the updated Gold Standard (Official) EFT Tapping Tutorial™. As a result, it is likely outdated. It provides practical uses for EFT Tapping but you should also explore our newest advancement, Optimal EFT, by reading our free e-book, The Unseen Therapist™, and/or get help from a Certified EFT Practitioner.

Note: This article assumes you have a working knowledge of EFT. Newcomers can still learn from it but are advised to peruse our Free Gold Standard (Official) EFT Tutorial™ for a more complete understanding.

Hi Everyone,

Notice how Carla Burkle's session with herself took a turn toward an important core issue when she asked the question, "What is this reminding me of?" She later says, "A few minutes before I was wild with grief at these memories but after tapping felt great tenderness for myself and her. I truly felt forgiveness for myself and gratitude for having such a wonderful dog for as long as I did."

Hugs, Gary


By Carla Burkle

Article: Hi Gary,

I've been a big fan of EFT for two years, and have even taken the steps to attain Foundational certification and start my own practice. EFT has brought about profound changes in my life, and has been not only the path for change, but the vehicle as well.

I recently ended my long-term relationship, and the insights I gained from tapping about what I deserved from life and a partner were very influential in giving me the courage to end the relationship. In the aftermath, I have been working with a therapist, "John" (not his real name) and using EFT to work out the issues that come up for me in our sessions.

After a recent session, I spontaneously blurted out the question "How many children do you have?" I surprised myself with the question, and his answer surprised me even more. He answered, "Well, two...I used to have three but my son died of cancer when he was one year old." This sentence hit me like a slap in the face. My face crumpled and I said goodbye, then walked out the door.

I broke down completely on the way to my car, and was so overcome emotionally I sat in my car and cried in the parking lot. What hit me so hard was an immediate mental image of his wife and him holding their one year old son as he slipped away. He gave me no details whatsoever about this, but the mental image was so vivid I felt like I had lived it myself. My intensity at this point was a 10+ on a scale of 0 to 10.

I began rubbing the sore spot with the following setup statements and repeated the gist of the statement at each point, including the 9-Gamut:

Even though his son was born with cancer...

Even though he struggled all of his life with this illness and his family suffered along with him...

Even though John and his wife did their best but their baby still died...

Even though they held him in his final moments, pale, quiet and in pain, and watched him take his last breath...

I continued to tap for all the aspects of this painfully vivid imagined scene of this baby's final moments with his parents in the hospital. Despite tapping on all of these I was still very emotional and felt my intensity coming down from a 10+ to a 7. I asked myself "what is this reminding me of?" and immediately knew. My dog, Gracie, died of a very aggressive lymphoma earlier this year and up until that tapping session, I still had overwhelming grief surrounding her diagnosis, treatment, and death.  I started tapping again, using the same sequence as above:

Even though Gracie was suffering with this cancer for a long time before I knew and I am completely responsible for her pain…

Even though I got so angry at her for throwing up and having accidents all over the house, and was so insensitive of her inability to control herself and will never forgive myself for that...

Even though there was so little I could do to treat her and felt so helpless to know that no matter what I did, she would still die very soon...

Even though no one at the vet hospital understood my agony and helplessness...

Even though I am so angry at the way the vets hide behind their scientific shroud so they don't have to experience the client's sadness and dash their hopes for a cure by citing what the research says...

Even though her treatment cost me so much money and she was so miserable and still died...

Even though caring for her affected my job...

Even though her cancer came out of remission after only four months and she died within a month after that...

Even though her lungs were filled with fluid and she could hardly breathe and I didn't know, and I made her go for walks anyway and I can't ever forgive myself for doing that to her...

Even though I couldn't let her just die because I needed her to keep going, even though she probably wanted to end the suffering...

Even though I had to drive her to the hospital in the middle of the night, knowing she would be dead in a few minutes and that I would have to drive home without her...

Even though I held her as the vet euthanized her and felt her body go limp in my arms, and wanted to scream out in agony as I realized what I'd done but knowing I had no other choice because she was suffering and wasn't going to get any better...

Even though I cried into her lifeless body and wished with all my heart I could get her back...

Even though I felt like the vet was stealing her from me when she carried her away to be cremated...

The memory of her illness was very, very vivid for me and I continued to tap for every memory that came up. Finally I heaved a huge sigh of relief and felt the issue fade to a 0 intensity. I played the imagined scene of John and his wife holding their baby as he died, and was able to see all the detail and empathize with their feelings without becoming intense. Naturally I felt sad for them, but more than that I deeply admired their strength and courage to face something so painful without falling apart. My feelings about the issue shifted from immense grief for what they lost to admiration for their ability to keep on going and having a strong family in spite of what happened.

I went through the several month ordeal of Gracie's illness in my mind. I replayed all of the hardest moments, such as my resentment towards her for the hardship her illness caused, my fear of facing her death, and my intense guilt for not knowing how sick she was and demanding that she walk and jump for herself rather than be carried. A few minutes before I was wild with grief at these memories but after tapping felt great tenderness for myself and her. I truly felt forgiveness for myself and gratitude for having such a wonderful dog for as long as I did.

A few days prior I'd watched the EFT videos where you discuss the role of intuition and I feel that my unexpected question to John was inspired intuitively. I feel that this deep unresolved grief regarding my dog was wanting to be resolved and was able to surface through my identification with John's grief for his son. Words cannot express how grateful I am for EFT and all the little miracles it facilitates in my life.

With love and gratitude,

Carla Burkle

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