Friday, April 27, 2012

The Power of Venting

I'm a big believer in the power of venting. Or whining, if you'd prefer to label it such. :)

Once upon a time, a million years ago -- I think it was 1997? -- I was sent to a pain clinic because my shoulder surgery wasn't the success that my surgeon thought it should have been. It was an outpatient thing, but a four-week, eight-hours-per-day, program. I didn't know when I went to check it out that all the clinic's patients were paid for by workers' comp programs, and the focus wasn't so much on helping patients feel better or learn better ways to cope but simply on getting them back to work.

Two memories of that horrible place (which went out of business a few years later!):

---One of the physical therapists told me, in all seriousness, that one of the goals of the program was to raise our pain levels so that, when we left and went back to work, we'd feel so much better in comparison.

---During the "exit interview," our spouses or partners were asked to come and Scott attended for me. The psychologist went on and on about how Scott should react if/when I verbally or physically showed pain. Which was essentially to ignore me and not coddle me under any circumstances. The idea, I guess, was to train me to suppress any expression of pain in words or action. At that point, I was steaming angry, and burst out with something along the lines of, "Just so you know, if Scott does any of what you're saying, it will be the death knell of our relationship! If I can't tell my partner that I'm hurting, there is no relationship."

For me, keeping the fact that I'm in pain (or feeling unwell or worried about something) bottled up inside makes it worse. Just expressing what I'm feeling is freeing, somehow. What's the proverb? A trouble shared is a trouble divided? Something like that.

Anyway, this is a long way of saying that I'm feeling better for having blogged yesterday about how lousy I'm feeling lately. Thanks for listening! :)


Deb aka AbcsOfra said...

Getting it out can be such a help. Wow...that treatment center should never have opened up in the first place!! What a mess! I hope your feeling a bit better sticks around. I think that the sometimes the weather really does impact us alot.

Aviva said...

Thanks, Deb! Yeah, that clinic was awful. I think they got away with it because the patients weren't the ones paying them. And the patients are forced to stay and put up with the mistreatment because if we left, we'd lose our workers' comp. :-/ I'm convinced that it was the abuse from the physical therapists there that tore my labrum, which then required another shoulder surgery to repair. Not that I could prove it, but I'm convinced of it.

Have a good weekend!