I'm not sure which sub-forum this belongs in. It's a success story and a request for suggestions. I'm finally feeling better after a long, long battle with TMS-induced back pain and other symptoms. I've had PPD symptoms all my life, but twenty (!) years ago, in the midst of multiple personal crises, I came down with immobilizing back pain. I was soon out on disability, and making the rounds of all the doctors and physical therapists in the city. I got the usual degenerative disk diagnosis. I had the tests, the physical therapy, the pain medications. Nothing helped. I remained mostly homebound for six years. Then someone gave me a copy of Healing Back Pain. It took me a while to digest it and start to follow the advice, but I gradually began to improve. I was able to get out of the house and have a limited social life, but always with pain. I remained unable to work. I had the misfortune at the time of seeing an idiot psychotherapist, who was more of a hindrance than a help in dealing with the childhood trauma that was at the root of my TMS. I became resigned to living with pain and limitations. Finally, about a year or so ago, I found this site, checked the practitioner list, and made an appointment with Dr. Gwozdz in Somerset NJ. He confirmed that it was TMS, and put me in touch with a psychotherapist who works almost exclusively with TMS patients. After a year of therapy, my life is finally changing for the better. The symptoms are abating as I work through the terrible residue of my upbringing. I'm not done with the work, but I know I'm on the right track and will get through it. But ... how do I explain my history to someone not familiar with TMS? This weekend I have a coffee date with a nice woman I met on a dating site. How do I explain why I haven't worked for twenty years? There's an enormous stigma to being on disability, especially with a psychophysiological condition. It's way outside the experience of most people. Few have heard of Sarno or TMS. The fact that it took nineteen of those twenty years to get the right diagnosis and treatment is hard for anyone to fathom. In part, I don't think I should have to explain very much. It's been a very difficult, very personal journey, not something to share with a stranger. But the question will come up. What do I say? How much do I share?