I hope this is the right place to post this - I just had a huge emotional breakdown from stuff I think I've been bottling up, and felt the need to share it somewhere. I don't see a therapist (might be a good time for that now) and I don't like "burdening" my family with my issues, and tend to try to be the strong, optimistic one - at least, that's how I would like to be seen. I've had TMS manifest as disabling back pain in the past and used Dr. Sarno's methods to completely eradicate it. It has come back now (almost 20 years later) as spasmodic dysphonia - so my voice sounds strangled when I speak, even though there is no physical or structural problems with my vocal chords. I am on day 38 of the SEP and Nicole Sachs, LCSW in in a video where Forest is interviewing here. She is talking about how in the Dr. Sarno lectures he would hold a fistful of sand out in front of him and say (I'm paraphrasing), "you need to get your emotions from in here (your body) to out here (in your hand)". For some reason, I held my hand out and tried to picture emotions I might be repressing in my hand, and I instantly broke down. I don't know why that physical action was so effective for me, but I generated this brief blog that highlighted the emotions I was feeling (I've left punctuation and spelling errors - I just feel the need to share authentically): I'm so sad that my sister died and so sad that my mom and dad are suffering and she died of my worst fear and it makes me feel so vulnerable and like our whole family is so vulnerable and i feel so weak and defenseless against the terror of god and if I see a mole on a family member i panic and i don’t want o be so weak. i want to be the strong dad and the leader and the optimistic one. i don’t want to be the blubbering cry baby that needs to be taken care of but i want to be taken care of and i want to cry and have someone tell its going to be okay. and I’m so scared of letting it out because of how it could overtake me emoitoinaly. i hate that I’m weak. i don’t want anyone to know . i feel so vulnerable. i want to be strong. i want people to see me as invincible. but inside I’m a weak frightened child. i want someone to take care of me. i want someone to tell me its going to be okay. the emotion i feel when trying to face my sadness and my fear and my anger toward god and life are so intense that i cried uncontrollably for at least ten minutes. i hyperventilated. looking directly at the emotions caused such a reaction that i have been so afraid of letting loose. like tearing the scab off an infected wound to try to clean it. when i held the emotions in my hands directly in front of me and spoke to them, my voice was perfect - with no manipulation. not just good - perfect. Thanks for allowing me to share.