1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
    Dismiss Notice

Accepting the diagnosis/Being the perfect patient

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by FordTough, Jun 29, 2015.

  1. FordTough

    FordTough Newcomer

    Hi everybody,

    I started reading Healing Back Pain about 2 months ago after having my third case of severe back pain (shooting leg pain, muscle tightness, buttock pain, the whole package) in five years. I was diagnosed with a herniated disk in 2010, did physical therapy, and felt fine for a few years (I even ran the NYC marathon in 2013).

    Then, in 2014, shortly after my daughter was born, I suffered another incident. The same scenario played out: MRI, herniated disk, physical therapy. This time I got two cortisone shots as well, which did help. I improved and got back to a normal routine. About two months ago, though, "it" happened again, and I've been crippled with severe back pain since.

    My wife had recommended reading Dr. Sarno the second time my back pain flared up, so I decided to take her advice and give it a try this time.

    It's been slow going I must say. And I'm posting here to get some insights from others on issue I feel like I might be having.

    I met with a TMS specialist about three weeks ago, and while I believe very, very strongly in the overall philosophy behind mind-body medicine, I think I'm stuck on various details, particularly as they relate to personality traits and how they play in to TMS and its treatment.

    I should also point out that prior to seeing my TMS doctor, I broke down and got another cortisone shot. I regret doing this and wonder if it didn't set me back, but I simply could not handle the pain. It wore off just a few days ago and the pain is now back with a vegeance, but I think it's made it difficult to properly assess the progress I've made, if any.

    Nonetheless, I do think I've had success accepting that my back pain is non-physical in nature (my decision to have a cortisone shot aside).

    I've been having difficulty fully seeing myself in the personality descriptions, though. For example: I don't feel like I'm an especially good person, or rather I could always be better; I don't feel like a perfectionist; I don't feel like I'm especially ambitious or successful. I often feel like I'm just limping my way through life (no pun intended). I am, however, very, very hard on myself. I have a fear of failure (and often feel like I already have). I have a low self-esteem. I'm often consumed by guilt.

    I didn't really see these sorts of descriptions in Dr. Sarno's books, though. Everyone just sounded like all-American success stories with bad backs.

    I'm writing here to see if anyone else had trouble 100 percent identifying with the personality traits but was still able to have success with overcoming TMS. Maybe not seeing myself reflected 100 percent in the books is in itself a perfectionist tendency. Regardless, I do worry that I'm somehow not a "perfect" candidate for the program.

    I'd be curious to hear others thoughts.
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2015
  2. IndiMarshall

    IndiMarshall Well known member

    I don't think you should have the personality traits. I remember reading some success story either in amazon reviews or else where a person said he didn't fit the bill of Sarno type characters yet he successfully treated himself. I will post that review if I come across that.

    From my view, you have nothing to loose if you believe you have TMS.. What is the other option you have .. Surgery ?? Even for that I think you should give considerable time to see if your disc will settle down. During this period reading the book will help to not to fear the pain , won't let u go to depression , helps you to keep the positive attitude etc

    I knw how it feels for you for the situation you are in. Immerse yourself in successful stories ..
  3. FordTough

    FordTough Newcomer

    Thank you for the reply.

    The more I read, the more I see that the personality traits are slightly more nuanced than what is traditionally understood to be "perfectionism," so what I've tried to do is focus on any and every trait, no matter how small, that I can relate to. But I think what I'm really suffering from is a fear that the my TMS therapy won't work and it will somehow be my fault for not being a good candidate. And, like you say, then what? Surgery?
  4. IndiMarshall

    IndiMarshall Well known member

    Just blindly believe you have TMS. Live in present don't worry about job , bills , sick leave etc kind of things. Do this for couple of weeks very faithfully .. You might see some moments of relief meaning it is TMS. & you can ride on that confidence ...
    Btw .. Listen to Sarno interviews on youtube .. Whenever I loose focus I listen to Sarno .. He clearly said Herianated discs won't cause pain.. Just go with this belief .. Keep listening to the time frames I mentioned below .. Listen to next 2 mins after the time frame I mentioned .. This is what I did when I had similar doubts as you .. As you are in pain you are not able to believe .. Once it settles Down in couple weeks you will have more open mind to accept .

    LISTEN TO LAST one & half min


    Listen to dr Sarno from 8:50 saying a Herianated disc won't cause pain

    Also 26.30

    Listen from 7:30 saying what is the real cause of pain .. Not Herianated disc

    Read the comments too under the youtube vedio
  5. IndiMarshall

    IndiMarshall Well known member

    Hey FordTough it's late night here in India for me .. I will reply back later if I don't go to bed.
  6. determined07

    determined07 Newcomer

    Maybe it starts with u not giving yourself enough credit?
  7. FordTough

    FordTough Newcomer

    Thanks, determined07, I've been thinking about that a lot. The need for validation and my inability to provide it for myself is way up there on my list of pressures.
  8. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    These videos are wonderful for reinforcing belief in TMS causing pain.
    The Dr. Sarno interview says it all.

    Just about everyone I know says they have back pain. Most of them take two Advil to relieve the pain
    but it is often still there. I've suggested to them that, as Dr. Sarno says, even if an MRI indicates a
    herniated disc, that doesn't cause back pain. TMS causes it.

    The back pain is from some stressful psychological emotion. A lot of that can come from repressing
    anger because of someone or some incident in our past or present. I think a lot of it also can come from
    the pressures of our modern living. I'm 85 and remember when life was more simple, before computer
    technology for example. But then I remember my father having back pain 50 years ago and discovered
    from journaling that it was probably from financial worries during the 1930s Great Depression.
    Most of us are going through the same thing today. Money worries can cause TMS pain.
    Somehow, we have to keep faith that things will get better. My folks survived the financial worries
    of their time. With faith and not giving up, we can all survive the present ones.

Share This Page