by Geraldo Fuentes

In the typical "alien abduction," the victim is paralyzed by some unknown force, taken to a small circular room, and then examined and probed by a number of large-eyed, gray skinned, hairless, short creatures. Tissues and cells are sampled and subcutaneous implants are often installed. Special attention is focused on the genitals and rectum. This involuntary examination is often supervised by a larger non-human creature, sometimes described as female. The abductees are then returned to their beds or automobiles and awake with no memories of the encounter. If they notice anything at all, it is usually that some time has mysteriously passed.

This abduction story has been described by hundreds of people who have been placed under hypnosis by psychiatrists, psychologists and other therapists. Victims come from all corners of the globe and from every age, gender and race. For every abductee whose recollection has been liberated in therapy, there are many more who remain totally unaware of their routine encounter with aliens.

The amnesia induced by aliens is highly effective, but it comes at a price. Horrific memories can eventually emerge in vivid dreams. In fact, many victims recall being told that they will remember the abduction as "just a dream." Even with effective amnesia of the events, as this paper will show, abductees have other symptoms that can betray their unusual experiences.

John Mack, M.D., a Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School is familiar with these symptoms. His careful documentation of abductees began with his clinical exposure to what is today known as Post-traumatic Stress Disorder. This collection of symptoms can vary from strange nightmares, in which vignettes of the abduction are remembered, to full-blown and detailed recollections of the entire examination. This delayed recollection of painful memories was first seen in Vietnam veterans who repressed gruesome memories of death and the carnage of war. Abductees differ in that their memories are of personal suffering which, in many circumstances, is ongoing.

A helpful treatment for Post-traumatic Stress is the effective release of these pent-up memories through hypnosis. Dr. Mack utilized this technique almost a decade ago when patients began to seek treatment for strange, frightening dreams of big-eyed monsters, involuntary physical examinations and large chunks of forgotten time. Under hypnosis, many different patients recalled similar abduction events in great detail. Dr. Mack's patients were not faking their memories, nor did they want to believe in aliens. These first patients described their experiences long before the media made abduction stories a source of entertainment. Most just wanted relief from the nightmares and some explanation of the odd images that terrified them or made them feel "crazy." Regression therapy for abductees, like Vietnam veterans, provided some relief.

With the passing of time, an increasing number of adults were being referred to Dr. Mack by therapists who felt uncomfortable with the stories that were being recalled in therapy. It seemed clear that a growing number of Americans had been periodically abducted and examined by someone or some-"thing," and that it had been going on since their childhood. Robert Bigelow, a pioneer with Dr. Mack, was documenting the abductee phenomenon. He was curious to know exactly who the "typical" victims of this dangerous research were, and why they were chosen.

The Roper Organization

The American population is vast. With about 350 million people in the last official census, this "melting pot" contains so many races, cultures, ages and economic strata, that it is a major undertaking to find any common denominator with a traditional random sample.

When a big company, like Coca-Cola or Proctor and Gamble, decides to market a new product, the company seeks the views of the "average American" and designs its product and marketing strategies to have the widest popular appeal. A random survey is not reliable enough when millions, or billions, of dollars hang on the success of accurately reading the minds of the American populous. That's why large companies often look to The Roper Organization.

Based in New York City, The Roper Organization spends more time deciding from whom they will solicit opinions than they do asking the questions on their nation wide Limobus(TM) survey. Their demographics go far beyond the random selections based on age and gender. Roper's sample populations contain the precise percentages of each ethnic group, political affiliation and education level as is reflected in the most recent census data. From a relatively small sample, The Roper Organization can determine the preferences of hundreds of millions of American individuals. Also, their data base can often reveal subtle psychological factors that not only tell a marketer not if his product has appeal, but why.

The Limobus survey can contain hundreds of questions from a variety of companies. Subjects in their special populations are asked about their laundry, their musical tastes, their food preferences-- all mixed together with no clue as to the purpose or intent of the inquiries. Beginning in 1992, Robert Bigelow, and an anonymous financial partner, formed The Bigelow Holding Company and inserted their own special questions in three separate Limobus surveys to learn both the number and character of alien abductees in America.

The Limobus survey questions

Since most successful abductions involve amnesia, Bigelow realized that he couldn't just ask subjects if they had been abducted by aliens. Also, since the questions would be asked in person, by an examiner, he doubted that anyone would want to admit to such an inquiry for fear of being labeled "crazy." But Bigelow knew that abductees, even before their memories were released, had certain events that they remembered and were likely to admit. These events were not shared by non-abductees. He worked with abduction therapists to carefully craft a list of "positive indicators" and these questions were intermixed with inquiries about the scent of laundry soap, the preferred sweetness of ketchup and a number of other inquiries in three Limobus surveys.

Pre-testing the indicators had assured Bigelow and his team that they could discriminate between true victims of alien abduction and non-abductees with over-active imaginations. Positive responses to specific questions would definitely indicate an abduction had occurred. The test also had built-in questions to detect fraud. For example, a positive response to "Do you remember seeing or hearing the word TRONDANT (a word Bigelow had made up) and knowing it has a special significance to you?" would automatically eliminate the subject from consideration, regardless of other indicators.

The surprising results

The results of the Roper survey took them by surprise. The report was published and confidentially distributed to every member of The American Psychiatric Association. Thereafter it made its way to clinical psychologists and other therapists dealing with post-traumatic disorders.

Roper's representative American sample of about 6000 adults (with a sampling error of 1.4 percent!) showed that one out of every 50 people met the profile of an abductee. This figure suggests that about 33,000,000 individuals had been abducted in America. A closer look at these specific profiles showed that these people were not "average" at all.

Who is being abducted?

The Roper Organization's previous statistics showed that about one percent of all American adults could be placed into a category they termed "influentials." Influentials were adults, ages 35 to 45, who had higher than average incomes and held positions of political or social authority. They were "trend setters," defining morality and public policy. They were leaders rather than followers. Roper surveys regularly focused on this group for a variety of clients who valued their opinions. The new survey results showed that a surprisingly large number of these "trend setters" seemed to have been abducted.


While the details of the abductee profile are best left undefined for the purposes of future diagnosis and treatment of post-traumatic syndrome, the Roper analysis showed the following positive responses to be unique:

  • Do you remember ever seeing a ghost?
  • Do you remember feeling as if you left your body?
  • Do you remember seeing a UFO?
  • Do you remember waking up paralyzed with a sense of a strange person or presence or something else in the room?
  • Do you remember feeling that you were actually flying through the air although you didn't know how or why?
  • Do you remember having seen unusual lights or balls of light in a room without knowing what was causing them?
  • Do you remember having seen, either as a child or adult, a terrifying figure-- which might have been a monster, a witch, a devil, or some other evil figure-- in your bedroom or closet or somewhere else?
  • Do you remember experiencing a period of time, an hour or more, in which you were lost, but could not remember why or where?
  • Do you remember having vivid dreams about UFO?
  • Do you remember finding puzzling scars on your body and neither you nor anyone else remembering how you received them or where you got them?


Certain types of scars or blemishes can follow an abduction.

(Right) A "scoop" in skin, A, appears as a non red depression and is often adjacent to a hard subcutaneous bump, B.(Ruler shows centimeters.)



The conclusions of The Roper Organization

"The Roper Organization's research on behalf of Bigelow Holding Company produced results that were unexpected by Bigelow Holding Company; chiefly because the number of people reporting occurrences of items on the list far exceeded what was anticipated, and also because the answers cut across most demographic subgroups... It is clear that significant numbers of people do report that these unusual events occurred, independent of any factors in the survey that might increase responses."

[Copies of the report, Unusual Personal Experiences, may be available through The Roper Organization, 205 East 42nd Street, New York, NY 10017]

Why are abduction taking place?

The report suggested that abductees were selected across gender and ethnic lines, with a larger number than expected falling into the "influential" group. The preference for people with higher education and social awareness may be coincidental, or it may reflect a concerted effort to examine the genetic potentials of these human characteristics.

The larger than anticipated number of Americans who fit the abductee profile is difficult to understand. For this figure (33 million) to be true, the frequency of abductions taking place would surely have resulted in more conspicuous activity on the part of the "abductors." We would expect that there would be more witnesses to these abductions. However, if this activity is being conducted by a non-human, superior life form, then its methods of covert action might escape detection.

The focus of attention on skin samples and reproductive organs seems to suggest an interest in human anatomy and reproduction. If the examinations are for the benefit of the human species, the methods of involuntary intrusion and the subesequent post-trauamtic stress that many victims report, is suspicious. The effort to produce amnesia is largely successful, as this study has shown. This could support a theory that the abductors have a more comprehensive understanding of our minds than we have of ourselves. It could also indicate a genuine consideration for our well-being, similar to our use of tranquilizers when examining endangered animal species. It could well be that the abductors have a similar mission with our species.

Therapy for abductees

Abductees generally suffer from both a physical violation (similar to being raped) and psychological isolation that results from being afraid to admit-- even to themselves-- the validity of their abduction memories. This is further complicated by the reality that these events are likely to continue into the future. Dr. Mack and other therapists believe that it is important that therapists do not consider recollections of alien abductions as "crazy." He suggests that successful therapy for victims of this terrifying experience requires that repressed memories be acknowledged and accepted as true, regardless of the personal belief (or disbelief) of their therapists. Patients seem to be able to recover some sense of control over their lives when these disclosures are allowed valid expression.

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