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Just starting out, confused about something

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by stevee620, Dec 9, 2015.

  1. stevee620

    stevee620 New Member

    Hello everyone,
    I've had pain that has been labelled as chronic prostatitis, chronic pelvic pain syndrome, pelvic pain dysfunction for 20 years now. Through much research and endless different treatments, i kind of self diagnosed myself as having pudendal neuralgia. As that matched all my symptoms the best. My GP seemed to agree, and recently put me on Nortriptyline, as this is used for nerve pain. It hasn't done anything after about 6 weeks.
    Thats just a very brief history. I've ordered a book by Dr Sarno and it should be here in a couple of days. I've read and watched some videos on TMS and the theory seems to make sense. I've always been a stressful type of person ever since i was in my teens.
    Its hard to formulate this question but i'll try. I understand the idea that when you are in pain, try focusing on your emotional state instead of your physical symptoms. BUT, what if your pain is exacerbated by certain physical things that you do? I'll be frank here, in my case its anything sexual, or a bowel movement. So, after a bowel movement, the pain immediately is increased ten fold. I have to sit on a hot water bottle to ease it somewhat. This is whats confusing me about the TMS idea: The pain has been directly increased by the bowel movement, a physical thing. It happens everyday without fail. Its not that my emotional state has just changed, or started dwelling on something negative that i can't handle. Don't get me wrong, my emotional state DOES change, but thats as a result of the increase in the pain. I hope you can understand where i'm coming from with this question. Like i say, i'm very new to this idea and haven't even received the book yet.
    I will add that i've been examined by several urologists, and had cystoscopies (3) and no physical abnormality has been found. Neither has any bacteria or infection been found.
    I know this is a very specific question, and there might not be a specific answer, but its something that has been bugging me for a few days now, so i thought i'd ask on here.
    Thank you for reading.
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Steve - I'm glad you found Dr. Sarno and our forum, so welcome!

    I do think that your first book by Dr. Sarno will explain a lot of this. The most important thing that he did was to go back to Freud to understand the very deep emotional rage that every human being experiences, starting with the moment that the small child is forced to stop breastfeeding and deal with the scary realities of being in the world. Depending on how much or little nurturing we receive, the rage and the guilt never really let up from that moment on, even in a "normal" upbringing - never mind what happens if trauma or abuse are part of the childhood picture!

    The thing is, focusing on all of these emotions is seen by your primitive brain as very dangerous - if you're wallowing in emotions, how on earth are you going to be on the alert and do what it takes to survive? You need to be looking out for sabre-tooth tigers, not thinking about your childhood rage - and so your brain represses the rage, and replaces it with a physical symptom. This was fine in primitive times when, by age 24, you would long ago have accomplished your goal of fathering the next generation - at which point you were no longer needed! And you probably didn't survive much longer, in fact.

    Anyway, the physical symptom is what Dr. Sarno calls TMS, and what we often also refer to more generally as MBS: mind-body syndrome. And our brains are really incredibly good at taking a sensation that we had once or twice, due to a temporary condition or injury - and "using" that same sensation again for TMS. Which explains why you are having very distressing pain symptoms over and over even though "they can't find anything wrong". This is memorized pain, a syndrome well-known to neuroscientists, and exemplified by phantom limb pain.

    So After you've read your book, I would highly recommend that you start doing the Structured Educational Program on the wiki. It provides guided writing exercises, designed to unearth the old deep repressed emotions from childhood, along with current emotional issues that your brain may be hiding from you. These are all the things that your brain has been repressing, and your goal is to bring those emotions "into the light" where you brain will be forced to acknowledge that you can survive experiencing them. Doing this, and you have to do it completely honestly, is what relieves the need for the symptoms.

    The other thing you'll probably want to address is the fact that these days, most of us, especially if we're prone to anxiety, are constantly operating in fight-or-flight mode due to modern stresses. For this reason, in addition to Dr. Sarno, I highly recommend Hope and Help for Your Nerves, written in 1969(!) by Dr. Claire Weekes. It is a tiny and absolutely awesome book that has helped a TON of us to conquer our anxiety.

    Also, check out our Success Stories subforum, for inspiration - and for any amazing array of symptoms that people have recovered from.

    When you take the stress of TMS and the stress of constant FOF and add those to our much longer life spans, it's no wonder that we have an epidemic of mind-body disorders in the modern world!

    So, check out the SEP, get Dr. Weekes' book, and keep us posted, okay? I'm quite sure you've come to the right place!

    breakfree likes this.
  3. Misha

    Misha Peer Supporter

    Hi Steeve,

    I'm new here too and also experience pelvic pain and was diagnosed with Pudendal Neuralgia. Nothing significant was even found during any exam or test (MRI etc.) so the 'diagnosis' just means 'pain in the area of this nerve', without a reason.

    You should read Ezer's post: Pelvic-Pain Healed. He had 'Pudendal Neuralgia' and pelvic pain diagnosed by many doctors and healed with mindbody work:

    There are many other success stories from people suffering various forms of pelvic pain whom have made complete recoveries. Many can be found on the TMS Help website.

    Also, there is a book called 'A headache in the pelvis'. You might already be familiar with it, but it goes into great detail about Prostatitis and how it is misdiagnosed in 95% of cases and is really just causes by tight pelvic floor muscles in most cases. The books talks a lot about how stress and tension cause many cases of pelvic pain in men and women. It differs from Sarno/TMS in that it puts everything down to current stress and says that physical therapy is necessary for cure (while Sarno doesn't recommend PT and as you will see when your book arrives talks about childhood experiences and personality type being part of the equation as well) but it is still an interesting read.

    Re always feeling the pain with certain activities, Sarno talks about conditioning - how we experience pain with an activity a few times then 'learn' to associate this experience with pain. I'm all new to this too so not explaining it very well, but the book is fantastic and will help you learn what you need to know.

    Good luck :)
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  4. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Stevee. I agree with Sara and Jan, and urge you to start the Structured Educational Program, free in the subforum of this web site. It will help you to discover the emotions causing your pain. And here is a recent post by a member of our TMS community who healed with the SEprogram. He posted again a few days later that he had healed 100 percent.

    Kevin healed 95 % from SEP

    Welcome to the SEP and to the path of recovery. I am on my final two days of the program and I can say with complete confidence that I am a changed man. I started after 6 months of nasty low-back/butt/leg pain, could hardly walk, stand, etc. was in physical therapy, chiropractor, acupuncture, pain medications, etc.. the usual. My MRI showed 3 disk bulges/herniations touching nerves, so that is what I believe it to be....that is until I read Dr. Sarno and found this site.

    I encourage you to really get involved, follow the instructions, do the journaling, take time to read all the suggested readings, and watch the videos. I'd say I'm 95% cured. There is still some very light lingering "annoyance", but I still have some work to do. I've been walking miles with hardly any pain these last few weeks. But even more, if the pain comes on now, it just doesn't bother me like it used to, I sorta just see it, acknowledge it, and go about my business. It took working the program to get to that point, but 6 weeks compared to 6 months is nothing! I made more progress in the first week than I did from two months of PT!!! It's going to challenge you and your "beliefs" in medicine, but you have nothing to lose. We generally wind up here when all else fails.

    So give it a shot, especially before considering anything invasive like surgery. If you put the work in, you will get better. Have you read Dr. Sarno yet? I assume you have since you're here, but in case you haven't, definitely readHealing Back Pain. Again, it will challenge everything you've believed about your pain, and backs in general. You'll be encouraged to resume life as normal, i.e. stop ALL "therapies" (PT, chiro, etc.), stop taking medications, and most importantly, stop thinking STRUCTURAL problems are the cause of your pain and shift to psychological as the reason.....again, this can be difficult and takes some time to sink in, so be patient and kind to yourself.

    It was a process for me. A few of the bigger moves in my case were: I ripped up and threw out my MRI test results (I found myself obsessively reading over them and comparing them to other results I could find on the web and even here on the TMSwiki site...); I got back to the gym and stopped using a weight belt; and I even cancelled an appointment I had made with aTMS doctorbecause it was more than a month away and it was hindering my recovery (that is, my 100% belief in TMS was lagging because I had this pending appointment, but as soon as I cancelled it, my recovery sped up significantly). Everyone's journey is unique to their situation, but I've found that really committing to the program and brining what I learn from it into my daily life has had profound results. Also, sharing along the way here in these forums has been extremely helpful - there's something about knowing that you're not alone in your TMS recovery that really helps. I encourage you to look through my past posts for some insight into my experience with SEP. Like I said, I'm just now finishing, tomorrow is my final day, and I feel like a changed person. It's amazing. And I feel as though it is something that one carries on with, not just like a one time 6 week thing and that's that...it has helped me to get to know myself and taught me tools to "deal" with my emotions. Learning and accepting TMS is a life changer for sure.
  5. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Great observation which can be applied to just about every diagnosis the traditional medical community comes up with to try to explain what they can't actually explain.

    Unless they are mind-body practitioners, of course! :p
  6. stevee620

    stevee620 New Member

    Thank you all for your replies, i am still awaiting the arrival of the book i ordered. Once i start reading the book, i will re read your replies/suggestions. I'm in quite a lot of pain at the moment, my arm/neck/hand "nerve" pain, and the pudendal neuralgia. I'm also in a bad place psychologically and find it difficult to articulate myself properly. Thus i'm still at the stage where i'm thinking that just typing this will make my pain worse. I need the book so i can get started properly understanding TMS. However i did watch dr Sarnos dvd which is on youtube and lasts over two hours. I just need to read the book so that i can read and re read stuff so that i get it clearer in my head. Then i will be able to formulate any questions that i have in a clearer way.
    Thank you,
    Markus likes this.

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