2007 January

Helleborus and Homelessness

by Sally Williams
june 16, 2004
K.C. Male age 44.

K.C. was brought into my office for a consultation by his sister. He smelled of alcohol and body odor. He wore very tattered clothing, although clean. I was under the impression he had spent the night at his sister’s home where she had cleaned his clothes the night before. On the way up the stairs to my office K.C. stumbles many times. His sister confirms that this is typical, “like he is drunk”. He also is showing signs of alcohol withdrawal or the DT’s, he is shaking and drooling.

K.C.    “Basically my problems are anxiety and panic with depression and paranoia.”

K.C.’s sister explains;    “He is very withdrawn and has been homeless for years. We are very close, but he will not accept my help. We had a terrible growing up. Our parents were alcoholics and very abusive. Our mother attempted suicide when he was 9 and I was 10. They (Child Protective Services) took us away from her. We lived with our Grandmother and it was awful. She could not have cared less about us, even less than our parents. We went a long time without contact with our mother.”

K.C.:    “A lot of my problems do stem from alcoholism. I had girlfriends and what not. I was always self-sabotaging the relationship type of thing. The girls I chose were not the best choices. They would cheat on me and then I would insist on staying with them until the relationship would just peter out. Teresa, my last girl friend, had my son and she packed up and left when he was 6. I was devastated. She was my best friend and he was my son. I crawled in a hole and never came out. It was like nothing was a joy any more, nothing mattered any more, I could not think, I could not hear, I could not see……..”

K.C.’s sister:   “He started drifting around and not caring whether he was paying the rent or taking care of his personal hygiene. He will be looking at you, but he is not there. Eventually he ended up on the street with no place to call home”

K.C.:    “I could not work. I would start working and then I would not show up anymore. I get anxiety around people.”
“Let’s say I am in the supermarket. I just say to myself - we have to get out of here. I will always find a safe place to go, like the library. It is quiet and people leave you alone. I enjoy reading a lot, mostly science fiction.”
“I walk down the street and here are two people coming towards me and I have to cross the street. I do not think they will hurt me, I just cannot stand the talking, or the staring, or the contact.”
“I am at a low point in my life. I cannot be productive anymore. I cannot accomplish anything.”
“It is comfortable being homeless. There are no expectations of you. The only thing left is to die. You are not afraid. Everyone else is in the same boat. No responsibilities, nothing I have to do.”

Recurring Dream: “I would be bouncing a ball and the ball rolls out into the street. I go out in the street and I would bend over to pick up the ball and when I stood up there would be a truck right there………. just about to run me over and I didn’t even hear it coming!!”

Remedy: Helleborus niger. Potency: 200c Two doses 6 hours apart.

Follow Up: July 14, 2004

K.C. again comes with his sister.

K.C.:    “I feel great. In the beginning, everything stayed the same for a couple of weeks and then it started to kick in. I stopped shaking so much and I could walk better. Little by little I was getting better and better. My eyes are so much clearer. My skin color is better. I stopped drinking the Vodka right after I saw you the first time. I stopped all the psych meds.”

“I have not had any panic attacks and not much anxiety. I really have not been in that place for a long time. I have not felt bad or anxious about someone coming toward me at all. I just feel normal again like I can cope. I still drink beer. I am drinking a 6 pack a day. Two weeks ago I was drinking two six packs a day.”

“Nothing new is bothering me. I am having working dreams. It is about having more communication with others in my dreams. I have not worked in 5 years.”

K.C.’s Sister:   “He does not smell as bad as he used to. It is a huge difference. The last time we were here he had a lot of scalp flaking and on his face as well and that is all cleared up. The way he carries himself is so different. He does not shuffle anymore. It used to take so long to get from the door into the house. Now he comes to visit and he has a nice strong knock. He is much more communicative. I can tell a difference even from last week. My kids have even mentioned that he is doing so much better.”

K.C.    “I am not focusing on the future I am just taking these days as they come. Right now I am just going with the flow and just being here in a normal state. My eyes can see and my ears can hear.”

Plan: Wait, no remedy.

Follow Up: October 4, 2004

On this day K.C. has walked to my office on his own without his sister.

K.C.     “I am doing really well. I am looking for an apartment in the Allentown area. I am taking computer courses. I am taking them through Buffalo Training Center. I am also taking web design in January. I want to get into business with my sister. Online sales and the accounting part, I would like to do the website.”

“I feel good. I am out on the street and I have not been paranoid of people and I am able to function without the anxiety. I took one more dose since the beginning and that is it.”

“I am drinking beer though, but that I have even cut down. I watch a lot of TV, but there is a lot of planning of the school stuff and the work stuff. I have a cat now and he takes up my time. I named him “effer” like he is a little F’er! My sleep has improved a lot. I am sleeping 8 hours a day, before it was very sporadic. I am getting up in time for appointments where before I would blow it off.”

“I still do not like to deal on the phone. I do not like that disembodied voice thing. I would rather do it in person.”

“I have not been to the library in a long time. I am ok in the supermarket and I just have really not had that anxious feeling.”

“I am finding things to do with my day. I walk a lot. I am eating better. I do not have that dry flaking skin anymore. It is just hard to remember what it used to be like. Everything has changed. I am part of the world again. There is nothing bothering me. I am looking forward to getting my own apartment and to going to school.”

Every other month or so either K.C. or I would get in touch with each other for about a year. He dosed rarely with the remedy and when he did he felt the effects almost immediately. During these phone consultations I learned that he did indeed get his apartment in Allentown and was going to school.

Follow up - november 11, 2006

I talked by phone with K.C. to ask him permission to publish this article. He was still living in his apartment in Allentown and is continuing to take college courses in computer training while he works part time at a local supermarket stocking shelves. He has been dating one “special person” and was feeling, in his words “blessed”.

K.C.     “I am not the man you met in your office 2 years ago. It is even hard for me to remember who that was. I am sorry I had forgotten to stay in touch with you, but to tell you the truth, it was as if it all never happened.”


The moment I saw K.C. I had a feeling for the case. He was very grounded, but disengaged. He looked right through me when we first met as if he could not see me. He seemed absent with a vacant expression on his face. The remedy that came immediately to my mind was Helleborus.
K.C. had a very difficult life. The situations of his neglectful parents, being taken away to live with his grandmother who did not care for him, and the shock of his wife and son leaving him are strong for the Ranunculaceae family and especially stage 14, Helleborus. Jan Scholten states that “the Ranunculaceae as I see it are childlike, who are lonely in a hard, raw world, needing support and protection. They are very carbon series like. The theme of shock is for the whole family. For Helleborus it is like there is a wall between them and the world.”

Stage 14:
Empty, Weak, Eliminating, Diverting, Pushing aside, Irresponsible, Indifferent, Distant, Covering up, Mask, Disengage, Diverting, Discarded, Dismissed, Disposed, Discharged, Drained, Detached, Indifferent, Coward, Mummy, and Fossil.

Lou Klein’s teachings of the Ranunculaceae family:
This family should be considered for children living with a boisterous family. The parents are into partying, overt sexuality and as a result the children suffer.
Someone whose parents were put in prison or were aggressive.
Hysteria [Aconite].
Stupefaction [Bufo, Hell].
Grief over the loss of their innocence. At a young age a triggering event or series of events that makes them lose their innocence.

And Helleborous:
Someone slow in answering. Someone who has been through a big shock. Seeing but not seeing, hearing but not hearing, feeling but not feeling. Everything is there, but a feeling they can’t grasp it in the mind. As a result of that they are in a stupefied state – “I can’t make a connection to my life, what has happened to me?”
They can have tremendous anxiety about their inability to comprehend. Then that stops and they get in a place where they truly can’t comprehend, like end-stage Alzheimer’s.
Ailments from disappointed love. Someone who goes into a deep depression, but when you talk to them it is a kind of incomprehensible state. Not comprehending what is going on around them.
Memory weakness or loss. Sits enrapt in deep thoughts, notices nothing. Staring, thoughtless. Feeling of helplessness. Slowness. Loss of mental ability.

Other Variants of Heleborus:
Helleborus Double

Helleborus Foetidus

Sally Williams RSHom (NA), CCH

Categories: Remedies
Keywords: Homelessness, Helleborus, neglectful parents,


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Posts: 2
Reply #2 on : Fri February 20, 2009, 19:58:28
Very moving.

Posts: 2
Reply #1 on : Wed January 10, 2007, 16:21:51
Thanks for a nice work! Rajan Sankaran too has stressed about parental neglect for Helle. in his book,'The Spirit of Homeopathy'.