Author: Meni Koutosimou
Psychologist – Phil to Post Graduate Mental Health Advisor
Post Graduate Degree on Psychiatry/Child Psychiatry
Doctor of Medicine at University of Ioannina
Post-Doc at University of Ioannina on Quality of Services
Translator: Myrto Gkoka
There are pains that have lost their memory and do not remember why they are pains. We will talk about psychosomatic problems and I will try to talk in the simplest language in order to be understood.
“Don’t touch me, I will burst into tears.”
When we think that we are dealing with an attack, we become sensitive and especially vulnerable, so that a thing that seemed of no interest in the past, now vexes us. The end of tolerance comes to complete the expanded reaction. At that moment, the functional symptoms make their appearance, since the physical function has been perturbed. No matter how much you fight it inside your head, the temporary symptoms will create real illness. Because of their intensity and revision, they re-organize and code themselves, taking shape, frequency, duration, de-organizing the body.
Every symptom has its own special language to express its dissatisfaction for whatever made it come to life.
“It’s really hard to shallow”, says someone who has stomachache.
“When I was a child, I used to vomit all the time. I think that this was my way of showing that something was bothering me and I could not stand it anymore.”
“When I feel useless to handle with a situation that concerns me, my head seems like it’s going to break into pieces. So, I am obliged to stop for a while or to withdraw. At least I have a good reason.”
“My colitis gets worse when they tell what I do is not right, that I am useless or incapable… and when I was little, I would listen comments like those all the time.”
“I often have heartache. I believe it has something to do with the fact that I cannot feel too much joy or too much pain…what I feel is a silent sobbing.”
“I have noticed that my nose keeps blocking up. It happened after my father’s death. I cannot breathe properly when I panic. It’s like I have no air.”
“My body keeps showing acne. It feels itchy and I have to take antihistamines, otherwise I cannot function properly.”
The crack that appears in the weakest spot proves to be involuntary, since the body has no other way of expressing soul’s intensity.
From a confession of a man of my close environment:
“I’ve noticed that it is not rare when I feel in pain in 2 places simultaneously… Sometimes one pain comes after the other, but every time one pain is enough to express my sadness. I do not know if different areas signify something more. When I struggle for a long time not to tell something, my whole body is in pain, my back, I am hunchbacked, my knees hurt and I cannot lean on myself.”
Thus, functional indications vary, while the most essential message lies to what is being said during this physical reaction. What the pain wants to express, apart from the defensive mechanism it uses, is a well-hidden fact, camouflaged like a closely guarded secret.
The body expresses the difficulties and some people believe they are able to overcome them with the strength of the mind or will. In this situation where they encounter the problem, they believe they can move on and feel good about their options, without letting any circumstance affect them. Being satisfied then by the control they have on the problem, they experience a break up, which is painful, like every break up, but since it is for their own good, normally they should feel better and better… On such sacrifices, real human break ups are concluded, since trying to control the problem that spikes and seeks for a way of expression is above all.
However, this is not how the symptom works…
We cannot treat it like that and expect we will placate the spirits. But who is capable of dealing with sad reality, which is exactly what one is trying to avoid?
But what else is left for you to do except for dealing with way-outs, recognizing the pain that the experience you have internalized, hides, a break up, the loss of someone of your own, the annulment and doubt on your face, your weakness of being present when you had to or another change in your life that you are afraid it is for the worse?
The truth is you cannot heal a pain unless you reveal it…whatever the cost. Hiding it in a corner of your head and believing theoretically you can control it, since it is not heard in the silence of your organized thoughts, in your loneliness, wanting it to be quiet or sleeping it with painkillers or anxiolytics, you won’t trick it… I bet you anything. You can stop it of continuing acting deviously inside you and more importantly against your health. And it goes without saying that ignoring it, you won’t make the cause that provoked it disappear, which like an omnipresent ghost will make you even more miserable and eventually will overwhelm you physically.
As for those who doubt that whatever assistance from experts exaggerates their weakness, they’d better reconsider it. Obviously they are not to blame for their failed effort to deal with the problem. So, they cannot discern the benefits of a cry for help.
And then, whoever knows is silent. I know that the time will come when you will ask me for an explanation. For You.
Bensaid, C. (1994). Love yourself, life will love you. Series, Psychology. New Borders, Edit. Liven.
Smadja, C. (2011). Psychosomatic paradoxes. Edit. After.