and her husband
Barney were apparently abducted by the occupants of a UFO in September
1961. The event became the template for the ever more elaborate abduction
claims that we hear today. But they don't impress Betty Hill, as PETER
BROOKESMITH discovered when he visited her at home in New Hampshire.
I'd heard about Betty's acerbic opinions
of the modern abduction phenomenon on the ufological grapevine. Naturally
I wondered how far and in what ways we might agree. We talked a lot about
cats (about 15 condescend to frequent her house) and politics and her own
abduction, but her less than dewy-eyed approach to most of today's abduction
claims will probably surprise people more.
Those who promote the abduction phenomenon
or, by their silence, do nothing to temper its excesses, do not amuse her
though she chuckles a lot as she talks and never loses an opportunity to
make a lightning-fast wisecrack. In 1995 she published A Common Sense Approach
to UFOs, which tells of her long involvement in UFO and abduction investigation.
"I have the feeling that most UFO organizations dislike my book," she wrote
to me before we met. "None of them have reviewed it."
You must feel a certain amount of
chagrin that this phenomenon has gone the way it has.
I try very hard not to have guilt
feelings about the way stupid people have misinterpreted my experience.
The reason I wrote this book was to try to get across to people that they
should stay away from hypnosis. Don't let anybody fool around in your brain.
I mean, you have problems enough to live with yourself, without other people
making their contribution.
The whole problem now is the lack of
understanding of hypnosis. The first stage of hypnosis is one of suggestibility.
It's supposed to be useful to have a person lose weight, or help them cut
down on smoking, or something like that. But if you say to a person, "You
murdered someone!" in the first stage of hypnosis, they're going to spend
the rest of their lives looking for the body. And the same too, when somebody
goes in for hypnosis for a UFO abduction, they're going to get it (chuckles).
I can do hypnosis, and I can give you
an abduction in 20 minutes. Sure I could. You can do it to anybody. See,
what they use for hypnosis for abductions now is what we call 'flight of
fantasy'. I do it with whole groups. Put someone in a light trance, and
give them the choice. You can go aboard a UFO, you can go back to a past
life, you can take a quick trip around the galaxy, or you can go into the
future. Ninety seven per cent will go back to a past life!
So you would trust an abduction
account that came from medical hypnosis, but not one that comes from a
lighter form of the technique the kind people like Hopkins and Jacobs and
When people tell weird tales hallucinations,
delusions, fantasy, dreams, something they've seen, heard or read when
you rule out all of those, then you may have reality. And in working with
people for years people would call me, particularly after they saw my movie,
The UFO Incident, and say, "I think I've been abducted." And I'd say, "Well,
you know, we really don't know." And I worked with these people, and we
were able to pinpoint why they thought they'd been abducted when they had
not been. As a result of this I was able to develop criteria to establish
the real abductions from the fantasies. In this country, they say three
million people have been abducted. Not once, but continuously. D'you realize
that means three or four thousand people every night are bring abducted?
In this country alone? I don't know how the planes get through.
Most abduction researchers and their
supporters say that what they find must be real, because it's consistent
from witness to witness.
Of course it's real to them because
they tell 'em the same thing! You know those therapy groups? A woman called
me. She quit. She said she got fed up. That therapy group it ends up in
"I'll show you the kind of sex I had on board the UFO if you show me the
kind of sex you had on board the UFO." No matter what the subject is it's
"Me Too!" I call 'em the Me-Too People. Whereas every real abduction has
been totally different. There are no duplications. Actually, the real abductions,
you've never heard of. Because nobody's writing any books about 'em. Most
people who've been really abducted, have the same attitude Barney and I
did. It was our experience and it was nobody else's business. But then
we got the publicity. But they have the same feeling. It's something between
them, and the UFOs.
If the kind of hypnosis that's used
is producing fantasies, why do you think people are having those particular
H: Because the investigators are directing
them to have those fantasies. They're suggesting them to them. They're
very, very destructive people. They don't care who they hurt to make people
buy a book, to make some money. Okay I've been having contacts with this
girl. Ten years old, she's on vacation with her parents, and she goes for
a walk in the woods. And she's late getting back. Her parents are yelling
to her, her brother's yelling to her, and they're saying, "Where have you
been? We were ready to call out the police." But she was just taking a
walk in the woods.
Years later, she wondered: Did I get
abducted by a UFO? Even though she didn't see any UFOs. So she goes down
and visits [a famous abduction researcher] for nine days. And during the
nine days, she has all these abductees come in and tell her in great detail
what happened to them on board the craft. And then he gave her hypnosis.
Five tapes of abductions, beginning when she was three years old.
You know what happened next? She joined
the Air Force. She's been in the Air Force maybe about six months and they
come out with handcuffs and a straitjacket and carry her off, to a mental
hospital. Now she claims that somebody somewhere sent one of the tapes
of her hypnosis to the Air Force. I doubt it. I think if they'd sent the
tapes, they would have just called her in and questioned her. I think she
was really bizarre. She's been hallucinating ever since. She's even married
to an alien now. She's had two foetuses taken. She can't get a job and
keep it. She doesn't get along with anybody. She wrote a little booklet,
but nobody'll touch it because it's exactly what everybody else is saying!..
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