Wednesday, June 9, 2010

How to Help Kids Who See Ghosts

Months ago,  when I first started blogging,  a fellow blogger name autumnforest offered her advice and support to me as a novice.   She suggested blog topics for me and offered me many helpful tips.  Her blog,  Ghost Hunting Theories, is very popular and I wanted to take all her advice.  One of her first suggestions was that I use my background in psychology to address how to help children with paranormal encounters.

I wasn't sure what to make of this idea.  I have worked in child therapy for a couple of years and although I don't anymore,  I never once saw a child that that said this was an issue.  It was possible this is because parents always tell children there is no such thing as ghosts.  This is the only acceptable answer for most adults whose children are afraid of ghosts.  Whatever the reason,  I had no answer for autumnforest's question of how to address children who see ghosts and after years of school I had to have some research to support anything I had to say.

Recently, I have found a wonderful book called Kids Who See Ghosts.  The book is written by Caron B. Goode and is very well researched and shows that she has a deep knowledge of child psychology, neuropsychology, and parapsychology.  In her book,  she carefully integrates research with case studies and stories told by adult psychics who had encounters with ghosts as children to create a picture of the best way to address children who see ghosts and have a fear of them.

She provides several suggestions for these children but the main points she emphasizes are these (in her words):

  • understand that you don't have to believe in spirits to help children feel empowered and be able to deal with what they see.  An open heart and ear are all that's required.
  • realize that empowerment means helping your child develop confidence and the ability to take action and be proactive in his or her environment.
  • know that it is all right to observe your child's behavior in relation to seeing ghosts before taking him or her to a medical specialist.  Take notes, use logic, and be clear in reporting specific behaviors to your health care provider.
  • understand that fear is a healthy response and helps children learn discernment and helps children transform fear into empowered actions.
  • know that art, music, play and other expressive outlets are helpful for creative children that see ghosts.
  • know that getting centered and grounded in nature also helps children who see ghosts
  • know that martial arts teach children character and empowerment through movement
  • know that dream journaling and stroytelling can be used to engage your child's creativity and openness.
  • know that once a child or adult has contact with the alternate reality of other side, such as through a near-death experience or seeing ghosts,  the doorway seems to stay open.  The person appears connected unless he or she makes a definite choice to close that door.

Goode's book offers a wealth of advice and addresses many theories and this list is really just a small piece of the book, but if this is something that interests you,  it is definitely worth reading.

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