In thinking back over the years of practice, it is astonishing to realize how many children have been pulled out of their emotional and mental handicaps to grow up into well- balanced citizens, in many instances to reach a most satisfactorily high development of usefulness in the world.
The hardest and best part of such work is done in the first year or two of it. I have had the privilege of watching the fruition in a goodly number of these cases, but for now let us consider the initial effort in very early childhood, to learn what we may from observation of a small group of nine children.
Cultural background of two of these children is quite high, of the rest mediocre.
Inherited physical handicaps are considerable and these bear rather close relationship to each other, being in the sphere of high physical and emotional tension; of poor resistance to atmospheres, to environments, to colds, to digestive disturbances, to high fevers; sufferers from many forms of inhibition, suppression, misunderstanding, poor reactions to punishment; unbalance of physical and mental activity, also emotional and mental unbalance.
Such attributes these children have in common but the variations in manifestation are most interesting. I have am outline of the symptoms of each child and how reactions toward normal took place, but the recital her would take too much time, instead I might give you a comprehensive statistical evaluation.
The ages of the children at beginning treatment varied from four months to four years.
The length of treatment ran from one year to nine years with two still under treatment.
The result of treatment, with many handicaps to contend with, might be summed up thus; 100 percent of normal after six months; 95 percent after seven years; 90 percent after five and a half years: 90 percent after five years; 80 percent after six years; 80 percent after four years; 75 percent after two years; 50 percent after one year; 40 percent after seven years (this child was away in Texas under other suppressive treatment for three years in the middle of the seven returning as bad as ever, if not worse).
Prescriptions made were twenty: Calc. c. three times, Calc. p. twice. Phos. twice, Stram, twice, Ferrum met. twice. Tarentula twice, and the following once: Lach., Kali bi., Nit. ac., Nux. v., Bar. c., Puls., Sil. In all cases, it took more than one of these remedies to do the work, for example.
Such an over-all statistical picture might be made by the group method in other aspects of homoeopathic prescribing. Perhaps our colleagues on the other side, the doubting Thomases, might like to see this kind of effort.
DR. ALLAN D. SUTHERLAND [Brattleboro, Vt.]: Mr. Chairman, I have a feeling that many of the conditions we find i children, especially with reference to their emotional behavior, are based on environmental factors which I hardly see can be overcome be the indicated remedy. True enough, perhaps the childs reaction to his environment is predicated, to some extent, on his constitutional make-up, but also it is predicated primarily on the environmental factors which surround him. For instance, a child who shows very evident aggression and hostility toward his parent will probably find the counterpart in such an attitude of his parents toward the child.
If you are not able to overcome those environment factors, it might be difficult to get too per cent improvement in the child.
I am reminded of some incidents in my practice. A child was brought into the office one afternoon several years ago, without appointment, and came in while I was engaged with another patient.
During this time I heard from the waiting room constant commands such as, “Sit down, Dont move, I told you to stay right here”.
I thought, “Well, why do the ladies bring their dogs in here if they have to make such a commotion and disturb everybody else?” But, strange to relate, the commands were being given to a four-year-old child.
The complaint about the child was this, that he was losing weight, didnt eat well, didnt sleep well, was irritable and hard to manage.
Well, obviously, a child in the type of environment that the mother showed unconsciously to me wouldnt be happy, would be rather hostile and aggressive, would be a child that was hard to manage, wouldnt eat and wouldnt sleep. The difficulty was in the mother, not in the child. When this was explained to the mother, she left the office with her child in high dudgeon. That is something patients always have in reserve, this high dudgeon. I never saw her again and I wonder what has happened to the child.
DR. ROGER A. SCHMIDT [San Francisco, Calif.]: Even if what Dr. Sutherland just explained is true, I never cease to be astonished and amazed at what the homoeopathic remedy can do for the moods and temperamental features of the children, without changing anything in the surroundings and without even talking to the mother, so that you dont start by alienating the parents before you even start to help the child.
The can be done gradually, after you have gained the full confidence of the family.
To revert now to Dr. Greens paper, which I think is very worth studying, it is a little difficult to comments on a paper that has been crystallized and summarized so tersely, giving just the substantive moelle, as we say in French; in other words, the essence of it is so beautiful. I am sure we will have a chance to study it a little bit better when we see it published.
DR. MARION BELLE ROOD [Lapeer, Mich.]: Dr. Green hit my special rave. The one thing I love about homoeopathy is what it does for little babies. They come in there screaming and they go out waving their hands.
DR. SCHMIDT: That is right, that is the way it is.
DR. F.K. BELLOKOSSY [Denver, Colo.]: I had a little patient to treat, a little girl, who would quarrel all the time, quarrel with her sister all the time, and who would bite her, strike her and with the parents she would do the same thing, I gave her Chamomilla did not cure her completely. She needed other remedies later.
She is improving constantly but no quarrelsome disposition any more. Chamomilla made the start. So, it is very, very important that we give remedies but, if we can change the environment, it is still better.
DR. SCHMIDT: I have verified this many times. That is right.
DR. A.W. HOLCOMBE [Kokomo, Ind.]: I think that is where homoeopathy has won its greatest laurels, in the developing of children that have been either raised wrongly or were born wrongly, and in making useful, intelligent citizens of them.
I dont believe there is anybody can practice homoeopathy twenty years without being proud of what homoeopathic medicine will do for children. Dr. Sutherlands case who exited in high dudgeon, as they usually do, the reaction of the child to those environments ofttimes lead us to the proper remedy.
The Doctors experience with Chamomilla is characteristic. Chamomilla is not only a remedy for rambunctious children but it reaches out into the animal kingdom.
When I was in school, old Dr. H.C. Allen told me that a friend of his had a Jersey bull that was so mean, so rambunctious, there wasnt anybody could get into the field with him. He was absolutely intractable. He sneaked a dose of Chamomilla CM., into that old boy, and he settled down and was a perfect gentleman after that. [Laughter].
DR. GREEN [closing]: I will simply say I enumerated only hindrances to homoeopathic cures in these children to explain the background of the difficulty of making them grow up into the kind of citizens we would like to have, and then enumerated the percentages as well as I could estimate them, of recovery because there were so many things to stand in the way.
Wouldnt it be nice if we didnt have those things and could begin with good environments and good child training instincts in the parents? We would get wonderfully good results then.