Craniosexual Therapy for Women (CSXT)
Craniosexual Therapy (CSXT) is an evolving holistic Body Psychotherapeutic process whereby sexual issues experienced by women are acknowledged in a somatic, psychological and spiritual ways. Psychologically in CSXT there is an investigation about your present life situation together with your general upbringing background. What were the stories you were introduced to as a child by your parents and what type of person you became to fit in or not to these stories. Equally important is to investigate your family's beliefs around the subject of sexuality and how that impacted in you growing up. What you had to hide and suppress about yourself and what type of person you became due to these experiences in your life.
The psychological energies or forces generated by thought processes in your life are bound to create an energetic charge in your body that will look different from one person to the other. In terms of somatisation for instance, women will somaticize a particular psychological experience they had at certain time in their lives, and for example develop eventually a pelvic pain, infertility issues, pain during sex, and many other conditions due to an earlier event or upbringing. In other words, an event that took place many years ago and caused you to feel overwhelmed can in the future develop into a physical condition.
The spiritual part of the treatment deals with seeing you beyond your personal story and engaging the unconscious part of yourself through visualisations, guided imagery and dialogue exercises that aim to bring forth parts of you that are out of awareness. The aim of working spiritually is to connect you with the divine in you, your intuition and creativity, and what goes beyond your material being. Whoever you are or became is not unchangeable, in time if you wish you can re-write your story to a better version, therefore healing your body of negative patterns and letting go of parts of you that no longer serve you.
The body carries vital information about you, the way it moves, your muscle tone, shape, breathing and subtle movements. Your life events become encoded in your body which are seeing in the tension you may carry in your muscles and often restricted breathing patterns. Actually the events in our lives and daily living create patterns in our bodies that we have no awareness of until we start to investigate about them. In CSXT you are invited in to your body with a healthy curiosity to pay attention to its sensations, movements and where your body holds tensions and how. Just by inviting this awareness precipitates the body to naturally release tensions and start a process of realignment and healing. There is no need to actually change or force anything in this process but for therapist to hold a safe space where the client have enough time to experience fully her process.
In this process the therapist's guidance is of major importance, by deeply attuning to the client's needs the therapist introduces the right intervention at the right time. For instance, it could be an invitation to breath more deeply in one area of the body or make a sound which aid further release of tensions in an area and the use of imagination through visualisations. In that release the client might experience memories , images and emotional experiences that weren't acknowledged or fully processed at the time of the event. Now these memories and emotions, some carrying feelings of shame, fear, sadness, humiliation as well as positive moments can be shared with the therapist in a safe environment.
Craniosexual Therapy is an integrative method developed by Tânia Gallindo. It aims to address and release the shocks, trauma and developmental trauma that women will frequently internalise and are at the root of common symptoms such as pelvic pain, infertility, disconnection from (or tension in) the vagina and pelvic bowl, including lack of libido.
At the base of CSXT is the creation of a safe space from which to explore intimate issues in trust and without judgment. It is unique in the way it brings together physical, psychological, spiritual and energetic healing through guided and structured sessions and deep listening to the client's unfoldment which is in itself healing. An important aspect of CSXT is that it is an exploration where therapist and client embark together in a journey to investigate the client's life, however it not abides to a specific goal.
Craniosexual Therapy can support women experiencing a variety of issues including the following:
*Birth trauma- Realigning of the whole pelvic area as well as addressing psychological and emotional issues related to the event
*Smear tests that left you in pain and traumatised- Softening and healing areas that have been approached in a rough manner
* LLETZ treatments - Healing of tissues, helping to avoid possible adhesion formations around the cervix
*Post-abortion - Helps with the uterine cramps and other symptoms related to it. Realigning womb and pelvis. It assists your psychological/emotional healing process
*Post-miscarriage - Helping you to release grief and any other symptoms such as cramps as well as realigning your womb and pelvis
*Pain due to Episiotomy or Scar tissue - Softening and increasing blood flow in the area and improving malleability of tissues
*After surgery or medical intervention that left you desensitised in your Vagina - Reestablishing communication with feelings, thoughts and sensation in the area and releasing traumatic imprints
*Female Genital Mutilation (FMG) - Physical and psychological healing
*After a colposcopy - Healing of tissues, helping to avoid possible adhesion formations around the cervix
*After a Laparoscopy - Aiding healing after removal of an organ in the pelvic cavity or removal of tissues.
*Fertility treatments - Releasing the body/mind stress caused by the IVF procedures
*Pain in the Vulva and Vagina (Vulvodynia and Vaginismus) - Helping to explore in a relaxing way further reasons of why it is happening
*Poor body image - Shifting conditioned beliefs about your body image
*Self-worthlessness - Increases Self- steem and self-worth
*Sexual Trauma - Releasing the trauma narrative that is printed in the physical, spiritual and psychological body. Physical and emotional rewiring of negative imprints
*Infertility - exploring the reason you are experiencing it and inviting your baby in
*Lack of Libido - Aims to restore the life force that is behind sexual arousal
*Difficulty in reaching orgasm.
The steps to this work
They involve verbal, physical and energetic evaluations and allow for an in depth exploration of your history. The work will vary for each woman depending on what your requirements are. The more intimate work takes place once the therapeutic relationship between client and therapist is established over a number of sessions. Sometimes the intimate work is not appropriate or required depending on the needs of each woman. Some women might only need talking therapy and a somatic energy healing approach that can be done over the clothes. This is a process where you and your body experience deep listening of yourself in a unique way.
Each session might include some of the approaches below according to your needs.
*Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy
*Psychotherapy process work - A variety of exercises to bring awareness about yourself
*Guided visualisation and imagery - Getting you in touch with sensation, feelings and imagination (used in combination with other approaches)
*Taoist Breast massage - Honouring experience that engages/awakens the pelvic structures such as the womb, ovaries and vagina
*Whole Body Massage - Increases relaxation aiding the internal work process
*Vulva Massage - Softening and moisturising the area in preparation for internal work
*Intra-vaginal mapping/reading - Pin-pointing areas of tension, blockages and stress
*Intra-vaginal energy conversation - Shifting stagnant energy, realigning, deeply relaxing and healing.
*Home Exercises - A variety of resources for you to practice at home alone or with your partner. Self-massage, visualisations and various other exercises based in mindfulness, taoism and psychotherapy process work
The benefits of Craniosexual Therapy include the following:
*Energetic release of restrictions that might be causing pain, discomfort in a physical and psychological levels.
*Creating awareness of areas of the body that are neglected because of restrictive beliefs and conditionings
*Educating yourself about your own body which is unique
*Creating more space, relaxation and awareness of your pelvic area
*Softening of tissues, improving the quality of texture and blood/collagen supply in your whole body and especially your pelvis
*Creating a more positive psychological/emotional narrative
*Improving self image, self-esteem and self-worth
*Internal body and felt/sense awareness that reframes the psychological/physical body
*Awakens natural sexual arousal
*Relief of pain and tension in the pelvic area
*Embodiment of your emotional, spiritual, psychological and somatic self
*Introducing you to the magical world of your pelvis
* Sensing your whole body in a new way with more freedom of expression
*Learning about your boundaries and honouring them
*Learning about self care
During the first, as Tania began the treatment, I felt rushes of energy coursing through my body, a delicious pleasant tingling from the soles of my feet, up my spine and into my buttocks, then into my head and beyond. A feeling of healing energy washed through me during the session, and a deep relaxation.
In the second treatment, as Tania placed her hand over my pubic area, where I have experienced chronic long term pain for 3 years, an image came to me very clearly, of a newborn baby, just delivered from the womb, tiny and crinkled, and held in the arms of somebody just in front of me. I don’t know if I was the child, or if the child was mine. Then, the baby disappeared and an image came of hundreds of writhing snakes inside my body, a huge mass of intertwined serpents, a terrifying vision.
Then again, quite clearly, as my focus came to my yoni(Vagina), I heard the words “sorry, sorry, sorry”. The words and pictures came clear as a bell. That evening, I woke in the middle of the night, with painful prickling sensations over my whole body and pelvic discomfort, the resurgence of an old sympton that I hadn’t experienced in well over a year. There is no doubt in my mind that the treatment brought to the surface, and released, a layer of very deep healing.
As I meditated on the experience the next day, questions came up and passed. Whilst my mind questioned the “sorry” that was spoken three times, I acknowledge that it’s enough simply to have heard the words. And for the words to have been expressed. I don’t need to know who or what or why, but somewhere some time, something happened that shouldn’t have. And tears came in recognition of this. As the tears pass I became aware of a surge of strength, a strong sense of connection with self and I feel the deliciousness of being me, in this body, in this life. My feet feel rooted to the ground, yet I’m aware of my sensitivity – the yin and the yang. I feel present, noting the colour of the walls, the warmth of the blanket wrapped around me, and I feel a great peace within. I am love.
During my third treatment, my body felt stiff and frozen, none of the usual lovely tingles of energy moving through. I felt convinced that nothing would come up this time. Then as Tania placed her hand over my yoni, I saw an image of many bats, hundreds of them, fluttering and flying out of my body, as if they’d suddenly been disturbed. Like beating an old carpet, and watching the dust billowing out. I began to cry, racked with tears, and a huge sense of catharsis and release, followed by complete exhaustion. I had the strong sense that another shedding of old trauma had been released.
Moving into the last session, I felt a lovely completion. As Tania laid her hands on me, there was nothing dramatic, no images, no words, no extreme emotions. I just experienced a calm and grounded feeling, of being really connected and “in” my body. And the strong awareness that I am just a soul encased inside a physical body. My body and consciousness welcomed and soaked up Tania’s treatment, and I feel great appreciation that we were able to meet in this space and do such powerful work together.
My sessions with Tania were gentle, compassionate and I felt held in a very safe and sacred space with her, whilst we worked together. She fully listened to me from her heart, and to feel completely “heard” is a healing thing in itself.
I know that my sessions with Tania prompted a great surge of energetic healing, and emotions that were long held were released organically. And having been chronically unwell for the last few years it excited me to know that this treatment moved something very profoundly, away from stagnation into movement and flow
Tania gently but firmly touched the walls of my vagina while she described the points she touched followed by asking me how I felt and sensed the touch all the way. The whole process encouraged me to open up, I realised I had tension in different areas of my vagina and as they were released a sense of vitality and life force ensued. She also guided me to look at my own cervix for the very first time in my life. I particularly enjoyed the vaginal mapping and cranial work in this area which were deeply relaxing and serene.
Tania is a skilled therapist, sensitive and fully present in her approach. Her warmth and generous spirit made me feel instantly comfortable and her inquisitive nature has prompted me to also enquiry on my feelings, body sensations and thoughts making the experience for me extremely rich. I left feeling empowered, inspired and considering this treatment as a therapeutic process to have regularly.
The experience also made me think of the importance of this work for young women and teenagers. Its a type of work that increases self-esteem, self-confidence and empowers women through a felt sense of their own bodies. Women would less likely to experience negative sexual experiences and traumas as a consequence. This is how sexual education should be performed, in a positive way to empower not to scare.
After speaking on skype to Tania I intuitively decided to try Craniosexual Therapy. Tania is a warm and incredibly feminine lady who made me feel relaxed straightway. Her touch was gentle, sensitive and generous. The whole experience was very beautiful and thanks to her I felt very special in many ways.
After an initial talk and relaxing exercise she started to massage my body with oil. The massage was lovely and empowering even though she was massaging areas in my body that were very sensitive. Throughout the treatment she kept checking in with me and engaging my attention to what I was experiencing. The massage around my vulva was beautiful, such a sensitive and gentle touch.
As the treatment progressed in a slow paced manner with Tania making sure all was well as well as tracking my sensations she moved into a intra-vaginal massage. She explained to me in detail where she was touching every time she moved her gloved hands. Eventually we came through an area of discomfort on my right hand side of my vagina on the lower quadrant, I learned. The spot Tania was touching was very sensitive, where I had felt pain before in the past. A surge of emotion surfaced and I allowed it to be released. Tania talked to me in a reassuringly way which made me feel all was ok.
Tania started the craniosacral part of the treatment by holding the area in stillness I sensed a tremendous amount of activity in my lower tummy which Tania confirmed without me pointing it out. I felt I was under a process of deep healing where heat came followed by a softening and a soothing sensation, I felt safe. The spot Tania had gently contacted in my vagina brought a traumatic incident that I had experienced when I was 18 to surface. Having her fully listening to what had happened to me further helped me feeling seen and respected. The interesting was that while she held this area the spot in question felt like it was melting down.
At the very end of the treatment I had the opportunity to look at my own cervix. That was an exciting, very educative way to get in touch with an area most of us never see. I was in awe of the beauty within and together with the whole treatment I felt seen and empowered.
After the treatment on that afternoon I felt a heaviness and tenderness in my lower abdomen around my ovaries, suddenly I realised that they were realigning and that continued for a while. I contacted Tania and asked her if that was normal, it felt like my ovaries were talking to me. She replied: “what are they telling you?” And my answer was; “Slow down.” So she recommended me to follow my ovaries advice which I did. Next morning I felt very connected to my body, balanced, lighter and relaxed. There was a sense of expansion on the whole of my pelvis and my body, a wave of sensuality flowing through my whole body slowing me down beautifully. I am now a big fan of Craniosexual Therapy, a much needed work for women. It has given me an unique opportunity of connecting to my feminine body and to heal.