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Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by LittleWildflower, Feb 3, 2023.

  1. LittleWildflower

    LittleWildflower New Member

    As you recover, how do you explain your miraculous recovery to others? Also, I’m starting to feel extremely guilty for not actually being physically unwell. Yes, I know the symptoms were made real by my brain and yes mental illness is a real illness but how do you explain to someone you’re suddenly well when weeks ago you could barely walk? Personally I don’t want to go into explaining TMS as I know that in itself causes a lot of controversy. But I’m also very wary of those who will label me an attention seeker. I’ve spent many months screaming from the roof tops IM ACTUALLY ILL when others have pointed out I’m probably just a bit stressed (see: extremely), so to now have to humbly turn round and say actually yes, my brain was creating all these symptoms in a tantrum is a difficult pill to swallow.

    Also, how to deal with those over cautious types ‘are you SURE you’re better?’, ‘take it EASY won’t you?’, ‘I can’t believe you’re back on your feet?’ Because that’s really irritating me already and it’s been 48hrs. I feel like it’s really undermining my recovery in a hysterical sense and I really want to avoid people like that. It’s like they want you to be ill still. Play the victim and remain how they want you to be. And then it plants a seed. Maybe I AM really ill? Maybe I’ll relapse? Etc. It’s like they’re really uncomfortable with the idea of me getting better. What’s that about??
    map76 and JanAtheCPA like this.
  2. Mr Hip Guy

    Mr Hip Guy Well known member

    Frankly I find it difficult to explain without seeming crazy - I guess I am not able to articulate it well enough OR it's just that others are impossible to "listen?" Either way, I pretty much keep this to myself unless I see a good opportunity to explain the concepts.
    JanAtheCPA and LittleWildflower like this.
  3. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    I've learned to just not talk about it. People will see that you are doing better, and some may ask you about how you did it. If they ask, then I recommend some resources they may want to check out. But I don't loan books or send people links to resources anymore, because I think if people are really interested, they will seek the information out.
  4. Cactusflower

    Cactusflower Beloved Grand Eagle

    Is this a roommate, partner, family?
    When you are living with someone, what you are doing is far more noticeable. I have a few close friends who know a bit about what I am doing in that they understand there is a mind/body connection.
    Family are different. My husband knows exactly, but I try not to talk about it much. He will ask me if I need help etc at times, but I have also asked him to try not to ask -to let me ask if I need it occasionally -and to just let me try and do things. It takes time for people you live with to adjust, and it is teaching me to set boundaries and deal with feelings and emotions around them.
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  5. Mr Hip Guy

    Mr Hip Guy Well known member

    What's funny about this topic is I often wonder about all the times *I* probably reacted negatively when someone ELSE may have introduced me to the idea that stress/feelings might be the problem (before I knew about it). Knowing my personality, I suspect I was probably pretty crass and sarcastic when they did. We've all heard the classic comment of "threw the book across the room" when first introduced to Healing Back Pain.
  6. Duggit

    Duggit Well known member

    Dr. Sarno wrote in his fourth and final book, The Divided Mind: “After many years of experience, it is our impression that not more than 10 to 15 percent of the population would be willing to accept a psychsomatic diagnosis." By pyschosomatic, he meant “physical disorders of the mindbody, disorders that may appear to be purely physical, but which have their origin in unconscious emotions.” He also wrote: “Because acceptance of the diagnosis is essential for a positive outcome and because so few people are open to such a diagnosis, I have a telephone conversation with all who call for an appointment. After years of experience it is not difficult to determine whether someone is a good candidate for the program, and for those who are not it is a kindness to them and to me to discourage them from making an appointment. This is not discriminatory but simply faces the reality of which is required for successful treatment. . . . There is no doubt that this practice has been factor in our statistically successful treatment program.”

    I had chronic back pain for more than two decades. This was during the time my two children were growing up. It was TMS, but I did not know it then. I have had no back pain at all for the last 31 years. Both of my kids in their adulthood have various forms of TMS, and I have never been able to persuade them that is their problem rather than something structural. One of my kids claims to understand the mindbody concept but is unable to apply it to herself--or even to me. If I am going to pick up something heavy, she will say, “Don’t do it. You might hurt your back.”

    Maybe those people are among the 85 to 90 percent of the population who would never be willing to accept the concept of mindbody disorders. They just don’t understand and, like the vast majority of people, probably never will. Just be glad and thankful you are in the fortunate other 10 to 15 percent of the population.
    LittleWildflower likes this.
  7. map76

    map76 Peer Supporter

    @LittleWildflower first off, I’m so happy you are getting relief. Don’t feel guilty about that after suffering so much. It takes so much courage to do what you have done.

    It is hard to explain TMS to people who haven’t experienced it. I can climb a ladder and clean the gutters on my house with little pain, but I’m in agony sitting on the couch watching TV. It’s so bizarre to try and explain.

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