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Nero Linguistic Programming, and general hypnosis questions

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So, I found a therapist, and went to my first appointment on Friday. I had a wonderful time, and really felt like she understood what I was going through and has helped many others through this as well.

She did mention one thing, though, that she emphasized was something that she did with some patients as needed and was available - but that she wouldn't push - that I'm completely unfamiliar with: Neuro Linguistic Programming. I'm a hypnosis skeptic, despite a fair bit of clinical evidence to the contrary, because I understand how the practitioner has far more influence in how these sorts of techniques work than most other techniques. I get the strong impression that she's strongly supportive of my transition, and sees zero issue with my wanting to remain with my wife through and after the transition (relationship drama with women has always been far easier to deal with when I'm in a relationship with a woman rather than a man... insert standard "the best thing about guys is their d*cks, the worst thing about guys is they're d*cks" joke), but... I'm still leery of someone rooting around in my subconscious.

I guess my big question is: does hypnosis actually work? Is it something that's helpful? Is Neuro Linguistic Programming something that is worth talking to my therapist about? What are the risks, and how can I make sure that I address them? How can I tell whether to do this or not?

Thanks all!


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If it is a form of hypnosis, it would never work with me, and I have been in environments where it was tried on me.  My ADD kicks up a fuss when it tries to give the attention span and concentration that is required for it to be of any benefit.  I cannot speak for others, but if you are skeptical of it, you would most likely be a poor candidate.


It is likely that you do have issues that need care along with your Gender Dysphoria and some of them may be painful to deal with, but will help you later in your program if they are dealt with.  As you can see, I had GCS 5 years ago and the GD was generally made livable in the process, but I had submerged other issues that had been there alongside of GD, and in the excitement of early transition was able to pretend they were not there.  After things settled down and Transition was no longer the push, the other items came back and really slugged me hard.  I ended up with a therapist for several months to catch up on old work,  

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Just now, VickySGV said:

After things settled down and Transition was no longer the push, the other items came back and really slugged me hard.  I ended up with a therapist for several months to catch up on old work,  


I'm really trying to address my other issues (bipolar and AS) at the same time, so this doesn't come up as strongly after. I think my therapist was surprised that I didn't consider my GD my most immediate issue, but I think she understands a bit more after our meeting. I don't want to stall out on my transition (neither does my wife or my therapist), but I consider these issues to be getting in the way of my transition, not things to put on the back burner.

Thanks for the feedback on NLP. I'm skeptical, but am willing to try. My main concern isn't that it WON'T work, it's that I don't know how to ensure that the hypnosis (of whatever technique) is properly constructed and applied. I spent 9 months in a monastery, and enjoyed it, so the patient focus is something that I am OK with... I'm just trying to make sure I protect myself.

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I did a quick search on google scholar on NLP, as I'd never heard of it before. At a cursory glance, I couldn't find anything listed in any reputable medical or psychological journals that I know of. I did find one systematic review of several articles from databases I'm familiar with. They basically concluded that there was not enough evidence that NLP  improves health outcomes in any way. They note that there isn't much research out there on NLP, and what's out there is not always set up well enough for the data to be useful, so more good research would shed light on the subject. Very important to take into consideration that "risk of bias across all studies was high or uncertain"




My two cents: I think it's a bunch of woo with no real evidence to back it up. It may help those who really believe in it, but probably more because they want it to work than because it's actually *doing* anything. My therapist is super into all those woo things, and I've found that just saying "thanks, but I'm not interested in exploring that" has worked for me. If it's something you decide to try, I'm not sure if it's possible that somebody could do it "wrong" and cause harm, but my gut instinct is to say no? I just keep imagining trying to keep from laughing if my therapist tried to hypnotize me! 


All in all, I wish you the best of luck in navigating everything. I think you're right that GD isn't necessarily the most immediate issue if your bipolar and AS are making it hard to address the GD. I hope you and your therapist find something that works well for you! <3 

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Thanks! That's basically what I was seeing as well, and it sounds like it's something that she does only if it sounds like the person is receptive to it. Definitely not something that she was necessarily even suggesting was a good fit for me, just laying out the options that she's familiar with. It's not that I don't believe hypnosis works, or that I don't want it to work, but... looking at all the crazy stuff that came out in the 90s with mis-applied hypnosis causing lots of people problems, I think I'll take a pass.

That's a great summary! Thank you!

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