Invisible Pain Isn’t Always Physical

Those suffering from depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses are #InvisiblePainWarriors too.

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Very few realized how true these words were to Robin Williams when he spoke them.

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By Philippa Bridge-Cook, PhD

The alarming text came to my phone on a Friday afternoon: “I want to die.” It was from a friend with endometriosis who was suffering with intense pain again, and feeling like the continual suffering was unbearable. That text led to a visit to the ER, which ended up resulting in a three day hospital stay in a short stay mental health unit. Unfortunately, not much has changed: the cycle of pain continues, and my friend remains uncertain of how to cope with the severe pain which is sure to come again.

Sadly, this was not the first incident of severe depression and suicidal thoughts that I have been aware of associated with endometriosis. In the past month alone, throughout our support network I am aware of four other instances where people expressed suicidal thoughts and wanting to die because of the despair and hopelessness of dealing with pain that most people do not understand. And many people with endometriosis continue to suffer in severe pain despite medical treatment, so it can be particularly difficult to be hopeful for a better future.

Chronic pain from any cause has been shown to be associated with depression. This is not a surprising finding, as anyone who has lived with pain for any significant amount of time will know that the social isolation, inability to participate in normal activities of daily life, and sheer exhaustion, can lead to feelings of depression and hopelessness. Patients with chronic pain have a two to five fold increased risk for developing depression, and each condition affects the other: depression can worsen the perception of pain, and pain can worsen depression. Furthermore, studies have shown that when pain is moderate to severe, impairs daily functioning, and is difficult to treat, it is associated with worse depressive symptoms and outcomes.

Continue reading this article here: http://www.hormonesmatter.com/endometriosis

Bloomin' Uterus

11039139_662825227181071_4369078669983645988_nSuicide and Endometriosis has been a topic heavy on my heart for the past seven months (you can readSuicide & Endometriosis here).  Am I suicidal? No.  However,last year there were several EndoSisters who committed suicide.  And this year a few more have.  Too many.  But can easily understand their hopelessness: pain; no cure; the potential for multiple surgeries; regrowth; Western medicine, alternative medicine, natural supplements, snake oils, relief, recurrence, and the cycle starts all over again.  Not to mention a sense of being completely alone, misunderstood, misdiagnosed, mistreated by physicians, mislabeled as drug-seekers, fakers, and crazies.

I’ve been trying to think of ways that I can help. In a small way.  Or a big way.  And I’ve fallen short on ideas… But today I’ve learned of a group where Sisters with suicidal thoughts can go for help.  An old-fashioned phone-line group.  Yes, that’s right.  You can email, PM, or call…

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Suicide Via Social Media

This is a great post with important information and resources for a serious and all too common problem which affects not only women with Endometriosis but also millions of other people who suffer from invisible illnesses and/or undiagnosed, untreated, or under-treated chronic pain.

My Sexy Endo (The E-word)!

Sadly, this has been the most active suicidal time in recent history that I can remember, for women suffering from Endo. Personally, I have taken more than five calls and we have lost as many women that I know of in various communities throughout the Country in the last three months alone. It is alarming and brings to light that not only are these women being under served, the medical community in general, is ill-equipped to handle the situation. After all, there were no training sessions that I can recall, on handling the suicidal person on Facebook. This is where I encountered all of them. Facebook didn’t exist when I was in nursing school or college. It is a powerful tool and can reach the sub groups of the Endo communities within minutes.

Such is the case of this one. This poor gal reached out and within a matter of…

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