I’ve watched athletes begin their game with the sign of the cross to bless themselves and ask for God’s protection on their game. I do that, too. I boot up the computer of my mind, body, and spirit with sound bytes, whispered prayers from all the wisdom traditions, invoking protection, abundance, and freedom. Freedom from the pain.
Then comes the cascade of thought forms—mental formations, the Buddhists call them, all the negative thoughts associated with the pain. “I can’t move”, “I won’t be able to go to work”, “How will I manage the shopping?” Let the mind games begin.
Ratcheting the feelings up a notch, the breathing changes. Stuck in the chest, panic, anxiety, shortness of breath. Catastrophizing, the psychologists call it. “I will never be able to show my face again, everyone will know I am crippled”, “I will never get better”, “My life is over”. The sympathetic nervous system is in high gear, the feeling tone of the body is fueling the thoughts and you...
“There seems to be an ‘Oh she’s so neurotic’ attitude towards female chronic pain patients,” is how one woman described her experience with the healthcare system.
“I have seen many doctors...for my back pain and migraines and find that many of those doctors treat women as simple or stupid and direct questions or directions to male partners or friends,” wrote another woman. These are responses from an online survey
conducted by National Pain Report and For Grace, a non-profit foundation.
According to their survey, over 90% of women with chronic pain feel the healthcare system discriminates against female patients. The survey found that 84% feel they have been treated differently by doctors because of their sex and 65% feel doctors take them less seriously because they are females.
Chronic pain conditions in women, more often than not, are multifactorial in expression.
The National Pain Report adds comments like these from the sur...