Monday, January 5, 2015

Jeffrey VonGlahn Blog Tour


Jessica had always been haunted by the fear that the unthinkable had happened when she had been “made-up.” For as far back as she could remember, she had no sense of a Self. Her mother thought of her as the “perfect infant” because “she never wanted anything and she never needed anything.” As a child, just thinking of saying “I need” or “I want” left her feeling like an empty shell and that her mind was about to spin out of control. Terrified of who––or what––she was, she lived in constant dread over being found guilty of impersonating a human being.

Jeffrey Von Glahn, Ph.D., an experienced therapist with an unshakable belief in the healing powers of the human spirit, and Jessica, blaze a trail into this unexplored territory. As if she has, in fact, become an infant again, Jessica remembers in extraordinary detail events from the earliest days of her life––events that threatened to twist her embryonic humanness from its natural course of development. Her recollections are like listening to an infant who could talk describe every psychologically dramatic moment of its life as it was happening.

When Dr. Von Glahn met Jessica, she was 23. Everyone regarded her as a responsible, caring person – except that she never drove and she stayed at her mother’s when her husband worked nights.

For many months, Jessica’s therapy was stuck in an impasse. Dr. Von Glahn had absolutely no idea that she was so terrified over simply talking about herself. In hopes of breakthrough, she boldly asked for four hours of therapy a day, for three days a week, for six weeks. The mystery that was Jessica cracked open in dramatic fashion, and in a way that Dr. Von Glahn could never have imagined. Then she asked for four days a week – and for however long it took. In the following months, her electrifying journey into her mystifying past brought her ever closer to a final confrontation with the events that had threatened to forever strip her of her basic humanness.

In this excerpt, I had been seeing Jessica for over a year. I was still struggling with how I could help here to be more open about herself. That problem had started in her very first session. At the start of it, I had asked, “What can I help you with?” Without a moment’s hesitation, she said, and in quite a forthright manner, “When my husband works nights, I have to take my three-year-old daughter and go to my mother’s for the night.” Then she closed her mouth and stared at me. Every session for many months after that started in the same exact way: She’d keep staring at me until I asked her a question. 

I knew I had to do something about Jessica’s continuing guardedness about herself. I had a foolish urge to ask Jessica herself about this, but, fortunately, the notion flew out of my mind as fast as it had entered….I finally developed what I thought was a rather creative idea. Little did I know that…I would make an unexpected discovery: for all these months, I had been laboring under a delusion about who was sitting across from me; and, in fact, I had been deluded from the moment Jessica first stepped into my office….

One day, after Jessica finished venting her feelings about whatever had troubled her since the last session, I said I had a question, gave her a warm smile and said, “How do you feel about me trying to get to know you?”I sprang this question on her without any warning, for a very specific reason. I hoped it would force her to react on the spot, before her defenses had had a chance to get organized. I was tired of listening to bland reports of incidents that had already happened, after her psyche had transformed them into emotionally sterile recollections….
Even though I had never before asked her anything even remotely similar, she replied immediately. It was as if she had been expecting my question from the very start of therapy and had been steeling herself for it ever since.

“You’re just a computer,” she quickly began. She sounded like a professor who was impatiently explaining a fundamental point to an obtuse student. “You’re just a thing I put information into and get a program back. You can’t be human. You can’t have any feelings.” Then her words stopped as abruptly as they had started. She stared blankly at me.
It felt like a million light bulbs went off in my head. I immediately thought, “No wonder I’ve had such a hard time reaching her. In her mind, I’m not a person. I’m just a pile of electrical parts!”

When Jessica looked at me, did she see that I was a human being? Of course she did. Yet, that reality wasn’t enough for her to overcome her fear about relating to me as a human being. Why she wasn’t able to do that was beyond my comprehension. I just couldn’t understand how she could see me as something other than human, after I’d spent months of unrelenting effort trying to reach her.

Her chilling answer was one I might have expected from a robot, not from someone who functioned in society, talked face-to-face to me, and, aside from her inability to stay home alone at night and her fear of driving, behaved like an ordinary person. I had never felt so estranged from another human being in my life.


"JESSICA:  THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF AN INFANT" by Jeffrey Von Glahn http://www.amazon.com/Jeffrey-Von-Glahn-Ph-D/e/B007X6UNP6/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_2?qid=1420255689&sr=1-2

Twitter:  @JeffreyVonGlahn
Website: http://JeffreyVonGlahn.com

*Jeffrey Von Glahn - JESSICA: AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF AN INFANT - www.amazon.com/dp/B00IUCKOD8/
~Goodreads Event Page - https://www.goodreads.com/event/show/950887-jessica-an-autobiography-of-an-infant-tour
~Rafflecopter Page - http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/4af5be7f7/?

***This tour was sponsored by 4WillsPublishing.wordpress.com  To book your own tour, please contact us.***


  1. This is another great post, Jeffrey! I couldn't get google to let me post on your tour stop yesterday, but here I am today! Very best of luck on your tour. JESSICA is on my TBR! :)

  2. Good morning, Jeffrey!
    Hoping you have an awesome blog tour day! :)
    Liz Gavin

  3. Hi LIz, So nice to hear from you again.

  4. Hi Harmony, Great to hear from you again.

  5. I'm enjoying this tour, immensely! Jeffrey, way to go with your insightful posts. That's right, make believers out of all of us!

  6. Hi 4wills, Glad to hear you're enjoying it as much as I am. It's afforded me an opportunity to take a fresh look at Jessica's experience, as well as mine as therapist and author. I wouldn't hesitate to do it all again. It's made a believer out of me!

  7. Compelling post for sure. Best of luck to you on your tour.
    Jennifer Hinsman

  8. Jennifer, Gratified that you find it "compelling." That captures much of my motivation as therapist and as author.

  9. Jessica could be anyone of us. I will like to learn more about her, so I will check the book out and add it to my reading list. Thanks April for hosting.

  10. If Jessica can remember so far back, she should have a sense of herself one would think. But what do I know? Its just a mind-boggling topic.

  11. Another thought-provoking post, Jeffrey! Good luck with the rest of your tour. Thanks for hosting, April!

  12. I hope you are enjoying your tour this week, Jeffrey! I look forward to hosting you soon:) Great blog, April. Thanks for hosting!