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Shrinks have a fancy word for this process, called "progressive abreactive regression."
Back in England, at the shell shock hospitals of Netley and Maghull, doctors began using psychotherapy as a treatment option, their methods concentrating on abreactive or cathartic techniques, designed to enable participants to relive painful experiences which had been suppressed.
No responsible clinician today would subscribe to the notion that abreactive recovery of traumatic memory in and of itself is sufficient to loosen the horrific grip with which past abuse may continue to strangle an individual's emotional life.