How to drive a person crazy;
- Cause them to falsely DOUBT themselves – in any way possible.
- Cause them to TIRE – usually by manufactured stress of one kind or another.
CIA Psychological warfare manual
If you suffer from medically unexplained pain you will have found that traditional medical treatment fails. You are already doubting your own sanity and the reality of your condition.
Now add a third party that;
- Effectively controls many aspects of your life
- Questions the reality of your condition
- Subjects you to scrutiny, surveillance
- Comes between you and your treating doctors
- Decides what investigations and treatment you can have and when,
- May delaying approving treatment in a way that exacerbates your condition
- Routinely directs you to be reviewed by “independent” specialists who declare that there is nothing wrong with you and why aren’t you working
- Pays you a token amount of money which is barely enough to live on and meant to compensate your for lost income, career, future etc.
- Threaten to suspend these payments if you do not comply with their demands
So you are injured and in pain, your control is taken away from you, and you are constantly having to justify yourself and explain to doubting doctors, friends and colleagues. You endure this for however many years, trying to hold onto your sanity and some semblance of reality but eventually, inevitably you start to weaken and succumb to self-doubt, helplessness and anxiety. If you want to make a person crazy simply cut them off from society, put them in constant pain, and systematically deny their thoughts and perceptions and make them believe it’s all in their head.
A few tips for staying sane
- Believe in yourself; if the reality of your symptoms is being questioned just ask yourself; ‘did I ask to be injured?’ ‘Did I want any of this?’ ‘Can’t I trust the reality of my own feelings?
- Focus on yourself– your treatment and health needs; dealing with insurance companies can consume a lot of time and energy. Although unavoidable to some extent, you should try and compartmentalize this aspect of your life and focus on your injury and doing what you need to get better. If you are the type of person who worries about pleasing everybody else now is the time to get a bit selfish.
- Understand the nature of injury and pain; The relationship between injury and chronic pain is not 1 to 1. A survey of 1100 back pain sufferers found that only 1 in 100 had serious physical pathology. Other surveys have found that many people with serious back problems reported NO pain. Chronic pain is a SYNDROME – that means its caused by many factors such as spinal cord excitability, depression and biochemical changes. Trying to explain it in terms of a simple physical cause is simplistic and wrong-headed.
- Understand Trauma; Likewise, with traumatic stress, responses to trauma are highly individualistic and mediated by personality characteristics, family history, genetic factors etc. What might be a minor car accident for one person can be the straw that broke the camels back for another person.
- Get support; find someone or somewhere you feel safe and supported. Although many people around you cannot understand what you are going through, it is important to find one or two people who you trust and who know you well, to confide in.
- Know your rights; an excellent Australian website with many resources for understanding and coping with being on workers compensation; http://aworkcovervictimsdiary.com/