This Tuesday, December 10, the call-in discussion group will be discussing Chapter 20 (“Neurosis Affectional Needs Gone Haywire”) and Chapter 21 (“Highly Sensitive People”) in Steve Ozanich's book The Great Pain Deception starting at 9 pm Eastern Time. It lasts an hour, sometimes a little longer. Phone lines will open half an hour early so you can talk to hosts and early callers. Here's how to join the discussion (for detailed instructions, visit www.tmswiki.org/ppd/Connect ): If you're connecting by phone, dial 1 201-479-4595 and when prompted enter the pin code 18311499 followed by the pound symbol. If you're connecting via your computer (Fuze Meeting), go to www.fuzemeeting.com/fuze/app/48fb7aa8/18311499 and follow the instructions from there. For more information, visit www.tmswiki.org/ppd/Call-In_Peer_Discussion_Group . Steve explores neurosis in Chapter 20. He asks us to look into what we were like and felt as a child. Our TMS symptoms may not have been caused by parental neglect or abuses. Other causes may have been parental apathy of verbal criticism. He cites Psychiatrist Karen Horney as saying there are three main categories of behavior a child may fall within when he or she feels rejected by indifference or callous and thoughtless remarks from parents: compliance, aggression, or withdrawal. These are good to reflect on about our own childhood and also can be applied parents with TMS who may be sending those messages to their children who are showing any of the three categories of behavior. The child perceives the lack of affection as indifference. In many homes today, both parents work, as mine did when I was growing up in the 1930s Great Depression. My sister and brother and I mainly saw them on weekends. So many parents today also do not have the time or energy they would like to spend with their children at home or to go to their school or after-school sports or other activities. My parents never went to any of my activities and to be honest I never wanted them to. Children today seem to have a strong need for their parents to attend their soccer or basketball games, their ballet performances, their violin recitals. If the parents don’t, for one reason or another, kids feel their parents aren’t interested in them or love them enough. It can all add up to TMS in both the children and the parents. Steve says “compliance” is the more common form among TMSers. They have a strong need to both please others and be liked by them. They also have a strong desire for someone to take over their life, and for a partner who will give them love which will solve all their problems. “Aggression” relates to a TMS person who reacts to parental indifference with anger or hostility. “Withdrawal” refers to a child who cannot get the parent’s attention through compliance or aggression, or if he or she wants to get around their arguing, abuse, or indifference. The child tries to become self-sufficient and turns inward, perhaps later being diagnosed as having ADD. A neurosis may develop, which is just the child’s need for affection “gone haywire,” as Steve puts it. The severity of the neurosis is in the degree of need the child has for affection and approval. A “normal” child tries to survive and cope, while the neurotic “makes the need to control central to their existence.” Steve then discusses the differences between thinking and feeling. He says they are polar opposites. Thinking is “impersonal, analytical, and logical.” Feeling is based, he writes, “on empathy, values, and harmony.” Steve writes that thinkers cannot control their feelings and so they are possessed by them. TMSers are intellecturalizers, great suppressors of feeling. They “bury the ability to feel life.” Does Tiger Woods have a neurotic personality because he is so focused on winning every golf tournament in is in? He asks that and then compares Woods with a housewife who cleans her kitchen floor 100 times a day. I remember a Polish aunt best by seeing her on her hands and knees scrubbing her kitchen floor. I didn’t see her every day so I don’t know if she did that every day, but whenever I saw her, that’s what she was doing. Now, years later, I guess she had a cleanliness neurosis. She had little else in her life to be proud of, so maybe she took pride in having the cleanest floor in Chicago. Maybe she just took pride in her house, and that was her main occupation. Nothing wrong in that, and if she was neurotic, it didn't hurt her, except it gave her a sore back from bending over with the scrub brush. What was your childhood like? How did you take criticism or did you feel your parents were apathetic? How do you think your children perceive you, as a critic or someone not as interested in them? In Chapter 21, Steve writes about Highly Sensitive People – HSPs. He says the Type T chronic symptom sufferer is an extremely aware or sensitive personality. That person takes criticism very personally and tries to avoid confrontation. He tells of an extreme situation in which he has known some people who try to avoid all others because one personal criticized them. Some of these people take to anti-depressants or alcohol. Oddly enough, extremely sensitive people may be perceived by others to be insensitive. They may appear to be cold, distant, or even arrogant, projecting an aggressive personality, when the opposite may be true of them. Steve writes that it is important for people to feel their work is of some importance and value. It isn’t enough to make a lot of money, but to feel their work is contributing to others in the world. But we don’t all have to be actors who movies entertain millions of people, or athletes who “get it in the hole” every weekend on television. Millions of others work on assembly lines, in supermarkets, and drive trucks or repair toilets. Everyone wants to feel their work is meaningful, and it is. Jesus said we all labor in the Lord’s vineyard, and our labor is valued. Steve suggests everyone ask themselves about their HSP personality. Are they more sensitive to bodily signs and symptoms? Are you more sensitive to medications? Are you more sensitive to pain? Are you aroused by medical environments, examinations, and treatments? He concludes by saying that a major factor regarding chronic pain comes from not feeling productive, and if a person’s true gifts are not matched to their vocation or purpose. The person may suffer TMS pain, “and society loses a valuable asset.: If a person cannot make a living following their dream full-time, they can work at it in their spare time, nights or weekends. It may only be a hobby, but it satisfies them and can bring enjoyment to others. Life doesn’t have to be boring or a drudgery. It can be as exciting and fulfilling as we want it to be and put in the time and effort to make it a richer, pain-free life. We hope you will join us Tuesday night December 10 for this call-in and share your thoughts on these two chapters from Steve’s always insightful book.