Ok, I've had some kind of real breakthrough. I absolutely KNOW that whatever has plagued me for the last few years and for my LIFE is TMS. It's like a smoke alarm that goes off. When I am upset, or get triggered (even by a thought) my shoulders tense up and ache, and I feel a wretched pinching right between my shoulder blades, worse on my right side (levator scapula/traps) and my neck hurts like whiplash. It feels like I was "stabbed in the back". I was, many times in my life, mostly by my own father. I'll spare you the details, you can read it in my bio. We didn't speak for 15 years, and now he is dead. My mother is dead too. I've had a hard run since 2001, and I feel like I am just now getting over all that and getting my "shit together". Pardon my french. I fully "get" that I have TMS, mentally. My dad is dead. I forgive him, what's done is done. Same with mom. Life goes on. I've been to a TON of therapy (though never with a TMS therapist), I've seen Dr. Schechter, twice, and he fully confirmed the diagnosis. My sister has been too, she has TMS as well. I see what is going on. I have read EVERY book on TMS that exists. Some of them, I've read twice. It's like I really UNDERSTAND that I have this. But somehow, the FEELING of it is so hard to get in touch with. I feel disconnected from my emotions. I "feel" angry, sad, mad, frustrated, pressured, etc. But I feel it "above the heart", literally right in my neck and shoulders, which of course, are the very places I use for my profession...I'm a professional photographer. I also have full blown symptom substitution. If my IBS/Allergies/GERD/Headaches/TMJ/fill in the blank, act up, my neck and shoulders barely feel any pain at all because my mind is pre-occupied with what is going on in my gut or wherever. I am afraid to exercise, because I feel major pain after I do. I'm very out of shape. I've never had a good connection to my body and I am a cerebral "nerd". An introvert, too. I can be laying in bed, THINK of something stressful or pressure inducing, and my shoulders and neck feel like they are in a vice. I "get" the diagnosis. I have TMS. Why aren't I "getting" better? I do get better, but it never actually fully "goes away". Other than when other symptoms step in, which to me, fully shows I have TMS. Something is always feeling bad, in my body, and it has felt this way since I was a child. I'm 45. I'm very FRUSTRATED and ANGRY, but yet even those emotions feel like words. Strong words, but still in my head. I need some guidance. I am determined to FEEL as much as I think. What do you think? How do I let out what is inside me without it damn near killing me? I know that subconsciously, I'm afraid if I uncork all the years of rage, I will die. But the truth is, I know the opposite is true. I just don't know how to pop the cork! If anyone on here can point me in the direction of a TMS therapist, in LA, let me know. Or if it is more appropriate, how do I post this in the forum, "Ask a TMS therapist"? I appreciate the help.