Power of Suggestion

We've known for a very long time that Lyn is highly suggestible.  We have used it in her favor for the majority of her life.  When she was faced with a challenge, we would give her positive support, encouraging her to do her best and she would.  We worked very hard to not suggest to her that she might fail at something or that she wasn't good enough or capable enough to achieve her goals.

Sometimes, a coincidence would reinforce a suggestion which gave it more weight in her mind.  I remember in one of our drives through the open and rolling hills of Montana, that Lyn was chattering away.  She kept commenting that it was odd we hadn't spotted any pronghorn during this drive.  Mom responded that the animals could hear her talking and were shy as a result.  If she was quiet until we crested the next hill, Mom was sure that we'd see some pronghorn.  The hill was about a mile or so away and we drove it in peaceful silence for the first time that day.  We crested the hill and Lyn's jaw dropped as she spotted a large herd of pronghorn just ahead of us on the right.  Mom's expression was one of "Oh crud... that worked... Now what?!"  For the rest of that drive, each time we encountered the pronghorn, it was after Lyn had gone silent for a few moments.

Last month, we witnessed Lyn burst into tears during the evaluation with the TEASC team at the University when the psychologist asked her if she ever got sad.  It was sudden and happened as if a flip had been switched.  This weekend, we believe, it has happened again.

Mom and Lyn were having dinner with a couple of their neighbors who asked how the TEASC evaluation had gone.  Mom summarized the events of the day and included a couple of statements about the seizures that Lyn had experienced in her early teens.  The conversation carried on a few more minutes on to other topics when Lyn stated that at lunchtime at day hab, her head gets tight and she just sort of zones out.  Mom and the two neighbors were caught off guard.

Lyn's statement, raises the question of seizures and are they happening again.  Lyn has shown no signs of experiencing a seizure around Mom, her respite provider, her team or anyone else to date.  She didn't have any the week I was with her last month, either.  We think her statement was a result of the power of suggestion, having been inadvertently planted there by the conversation moments before.  However, her statement must also be considered as a real possibility.  Mom has contacted the day hab administrator to bring the topic to her attention, asking that if Lyn has any episodes they be reported immediately.  No one will bring the topic up around Lyn again.  However, they will keep a closer eye on her to make sure her statement was just that, a statement and not a report of a bigger problem.



  1. This can be a good thing and a bad. Does make me careful of what I say.


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