When I first meet children in my practice, they have usually been to many therapists, doctors and other experts on how best to handle their challenges. The kids have established defensive behaviors based on these experiences. There are many reasons why parents decide to embark on the Anat Baniel Method for Children process, but the most obvious is that they aren’t seeing the progress they know is within their child’s grasp, and so they continue to look outside the box. In many ways, each parent of a child with a disability becomes a pioneer and advocate.
When I meet children for the first time, it’s extremely important to establish respect and let go of any goals that I may have for them, or that their parents have for them. The most important thing is to meet the child and get to know them. To find their playgrounds of communication. We achieve this in ABM work, by touching with the least amount of intensity. Just enough to let the child know we are there, but not enough to feel like we are imposing goals. All kids respond to that kind of touch very well, no matter the disability. Less is more means that no goals are predetermined, that no enforcement or repetition is implemented. The effortless touch and the response to that touch then determines the next step. And in this way, children become connected to themselves, and a switch gets turned on, perhaps for the first time in the long line of therapies tried. This is why parents love the work. First & foremost, because it respects their children. And children thrive with it because they feel listened to and can be the true explorers that nature intended.