This has been on my mind for a while: I'm wondering if anyone has thoughts on how to bring up TMS as a possible diagnosis for someone else. How do you introduce TMS to someone else? For those of you who've tried it, what worked (and what didn't)? For those of you who discovered TMS after someone else told you about it, what about that person, or their "argument" so to speak, reached you? This isn't coming out of nowhere: I think my sister, who I am quite close to, has TMS and I just don’t know how to bring it up to her. This question of whether to talk to people about the TMS diagnosis (or how to talk to them) isn't brand-new to me. I have known a couple people who seem to me to be suffering from TMS (though I am obviously not a doctor who can diagnose them). One is my former neighbor who I became friendly with. She suffers from depression and, previously, anorexia, and has a slew of back problems as well as hip pain. I suspected it might be TMS because she talked about how the pain moved around without her physically doing anything. I suggested Georgie's book to her, because I thought it was in the writing style she would most respond to (and because it was one of the few actual paperback books I could physically lend to people). She thanked me for the offer but said did not want to read it, as she was worried it would make her more anxious about her pain. She ended up having back surgery and is now in a brace. I can't help but feel I could have tried harder, but I felt we weren't good enough friends for me to push it and so I let it alone. I also have a friend who suffers from severe back pain. I've unfortunately lost touch with her (not counting the occasional Facebook interactions). When I knew her and was in more constant contact with her, though, it was pretty clear to me her back pain might be TMS. It developed soon after her mother was murdered and her two younger sisters very narrowly escaped death in a pretty horrific domestic violence incident. The back pain gets worse when she is stressed, and MUCH worse around the anniversary of her mom's death. She's also the kind of person to take care of everyone else except herself. She's been to multiple doctors, and they just can't find anything structurally wrong with her back. I used to be much closer to her, but now that we've essentially lost touch, I feel it is not my place as a now-acquaintance to bring it up with her. Yet, I really hate to see her suffering so much when I think the TMS approach could really help. I bring these examples up because I think it is very difficult to share the TMS approach, or any medical or mental health approaches, to someone you don't know that well, or are not in contact with that much. Though I started recognize some TMS aspects in both these individuals a while back, the lack of a deeper relationship prevented me from pushing any medical information on either of them. I always thought that, if they were better friends, or family members, I wouldn't hesitate to encourage them to look into the TMS approach. But now, I think I was wrong about that. My sister has started developing some symptoms (allergies and hives, namely) that I think may be TMS. She's got significant anxiety (GAD) that I think has been making her symptoms much worse. Last night, she called me because she was terrified she somehow ate something containing tree nuts (her allergy) and that her throat was closing up, even though a) she said herself that the only thing that could have possibly contained tree nuts she ate five hours ago, and b) the allergist she saw last week told her she had literally less than 0.01% chance of anaphylaxis. (She told me both these things herself.) She also had developed pretty bad hives on her knee after itching it to relieve the discomfort she was in. I should mention, today my sister started a new job (still with the same organization she worked with over the summer, just a different job) and when on the phone with me last night expressed a lot of anxiety around not being able to meet the new expectations and generally failing – failing herself, failing the youth she's working with, failing the organization, failing our parents, etc. She puts so much pressure on herself, and I don't think she knows how to stop doing that. When we were growing up, I had some health stuff and I think she felt like she had to be the perfect child for my parents so they wouldn't have to worry about her, too. I can't help but feel like so much of the pressure she puts on herself is my fault, or rather, that I created the environment that is now making her feel. (I also know if I do talk with her about TMS that I can't go into all of this. It has to be about her, and her healing process, not about what factors shaped where she's at now.) I have no idea if her allergies are legitimately allergies, but from our conversation, and just from knowing her, I really think her anxiety is at least exacerbating her symptoms, if not creating them. She knows about TMS through me, and I doubt she would be opposed to the approach, but I honestly don't know how to bring it up in the first place. I always thought it'd be so much easier to talk to someone I'm close to about TMS, but it feels just as hard. While I suppose I'm asking for advice and for guidance around how to approach my sister, or if I should talk to her at all, I also hope to open up a bigger discussion about talking to others about TMS. How do we tell the people close to us about TMS? What about acquaintances? When is it right and when do we leave it all alone? At a certain point, it's in their hands -- they ultimately decide whether to open their minds to the approach or not -- but are there ways we can help make that decision clearer? I know this all depends on the person and the relationship, but I'd really love to hear what everyone else's experience has been.