Pain Concern
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I can't take much more

Why is it, I feel like I pissed our Lord above off ? Why am I being punished ? What did i do ? I have rarely given up on anything in my life, but everyone has a breaking point. I love my wife and kids and always there for anyone that may need help. First thing is I can't get over my P.T.S.D. I have been shot, blown up, can't sleep, relax in my own home. I can't walk by a trash can or drive by a dead animal by the road with out thinking something will explode. Going under a overpass without thinking there is someone up top or on the other side, that's the short version. second thing is I had my L5-S1 fused a few weeks ago. I can not shake the pain away. It's a major struggle to push threw the day. I feel as I can not defend myself or my family. I feel that I'm alone. Sunday night I wook up about 04:30 in excruciating pain in my back, a different kind of pain other than my spine, come to find out I'm passing a kidney stone. (Still has not passed) Now, I live by the bible, I alwayse do what's rite and work for what I have. But what did I do to have all these problems ? is this what you would say the the past or the demons will catch up to you ? After I was medically discharged from the Army, I feel like my health has gone down hill. If its not one thing its another. I can only hide the pain for so long from my wife and kids. I can't let them see there role model in constant pain fighting tears and complaining when nobody's in the room. I have prayed for forgiveness every night since I went over sea's but it seems and feels like I am being punished. I don't think I can take anymore with my mind playing games (Flash backs and fear) the pain I'm in every day. I wake up with a prayer and go to sleep with another prair. I can't take this anymore. What am I to do ? I have tried so hard, loved my family harder and I just want it all to stop. I don't want medicine or be evaluated somebody who will judge me. I feel as it won't get better. I have tried and tried harder but I'm wanting to pop smoke. Sorry to ramble like I am, but it has to be said and don't think I can talk to anyone.

35 Replies

You must seek professional help through your Doctor. You can't expect to fight this alone.

Your family love you for who you are - not what you might have been. They are the closest to you so share your fears and pain with them. Don't hide it away - they aren't blind but probably frightened to say anything to you for fear of making matters worse. They'll understand and you can help each other as a family.

We aren't medical experts here and can only offer help through our own experiences.

With the right medication, support and learning about your pain you will be able to cope much better.

I do understand being married to a former sailor from the Royal Navy. He too was medically discharged from a job he loved and felt worthless.

His life is still, and always will be so hard.

Good luck

Pat x


mate pm me, can help, am disabled female vet peace time, sons done tours of Afghanistan so I know more than most,he's helped his mate from topping himself in 2010 what a shit year that was...personally I have 2 spinal cord stimulators from brain down spine 9 electrodes in total and two internal battery cells - soldier son just says mum your back is *....d and he is right it has from when I landed on the cocyxx at 18 on an obstacle course...and I take Ketamine (on the street its called special K but mine is legal) I see a Psychiatrist for depression secondary to pain. my doc is brilliant ex Defence and does not give a toss about DVA he cares for his patients, I go to him for injections that can get up to 60 we both lose count to get me through a week, a fortnight to a month...had I not met him...I would have topped my self in 2003 - seriously I have walked with the black dog...I just call him mate am reaching out - my hands there. And hopefully will get you to a point...that's something. L5S1 takes time to heal here its up to you.


It's so hard when all you can think about is your pain,,, I think it magnifies it,,,,, I also had spine fusion same place as you. It's been 7 mths since mind and each day of the first couple of weeks it gets easier and easier....

God knows, when they told me to learn to manage my pain that was not the answer I wanted. In my deepest thoughts was death, not to suffer any more... But here I am still here. I truly believe I would prefer to fight cancer at least the pace to try is much quicker...

Just to say your not alone

Wishing you all the best .



This is going to sound very direct: what you feel is normal for for your injuries and the emotional impact of them. You can feel better but it will take time. Please go see a PTSD Dr VERY soon. They will not judge you. I see no judging here except of you by you. You will have to get used to the idea that you are not your job, you are you, and a very good man by the sounds of it. Thinking we are our jobs is the road to ruin, as I found out myself. It took me 4 years, a mourning process. Be honest with your family and they will support you. There is a lot of literature/google on post traumatic stress disorder these days and it is nothing to be ashamed of. Don't see it as a punishment. The Army well knows about PTSD and I for one dont think they do nearly enough for vets.See it as what you gave for your country. I do hope you get better.


Hello, I will reply to you more fully later in the day. In the meantime, I will say some ardent prayers for you so that you may be helped. God bless.


I feel your pain! Waking each day not happy to hear the sound of birds singing but dreading the day ahead, wondering if 'today' I will finally succumb and decide the effort is not worth it. Coping is of course possible or I would not be writing this but a continual internal battle prevails, 'Can I cope with this much longer', 'Surely, there must be something to give more relief', 'Do I want to continue the daily struggle' etc etc. I too feel as if I have become incapable, useless and of no purposeful use to my family. The struggle for you must be even greater with PTSD distorting your thoughts. Has your Gp suggested CBT or Schematherapy, You deserve more support but experience tells me it's something you have to seek out. I sincerely hope you make a swift recovery from the fusion and it proves to be beneficial (I won't bore you with my own L5/S1 scenario) just let you know-I've been there so too speak and empathise with all it entails. Hang on in there, don't expect too much of yourself just yet. I'm sure your family love you for who you are and not, as too many of us think, for what we were. After all, for good or bad everything CHANGES. A few words of wisdom passed to me by a kindly therapist relating to pain management " If you always do what you always did, You'll always get what you always got?" If nothing else, remember, you are not alone. take care.


You are going through hell but there are things you can do. Regarding your back pain, it is still very early days post op. It takes about 3 months to recover, it took me 6 weeks, but certainly not 1 week. If you are pushing yourself and doing too much you'll make things worse. Please rest and take your time.

Regarding your PTSD, have you been seen by anyone who specialises in PTSD? Your GP may be able to refer you, but go on line and see what facilities are in your area. Help for service vets is very poor in general but they are making it better so please get help.

Regarding your family, I understand as the man of the house and someone who's been in the army you would feel like a protector (as you were for us Brits when you go to war) but you are a human being firstly. I think you'd be surprised by your wife's response if you tell her how you are feeling, but you must be open and honest. Sit her down and tell her how you are feeling. My husband is very bad at communicating but very good at thinking, if he thinks I have a problem he'll try and think big, how can he solve it? That's not what women need. All we need is communication and small gestures. She will certainly want to help you and you must let her.

After 25 years of being in constant pain I too think I must have been evil in a past life! But what you have done with your life has been amazing and you should not punish yourself, and you must look at this as a new chapter. What do you want to achieve in the short, medium and long term? Write down a plan of action, eg short term - do my physio daily, and in a couple of weeks go for a walk daily, start with 5 mins, then 10 when you feel ready and so on. I believe by doing all these things you and your family will be happier, the children will probably be worried sick about you, they aren't daft and can pick up on your stress and sadness. By making yourself better they'll be happier too. Please keep in contact and let us know how you are doing, good luck. You've achieved the first hurdle by telling us on here how you feel, that could be your first objective achieved.


I can in many ways identify with you, although for different reasons. I dedicated almost my entire life to the service of God, and here I sit worthless. I struggle everyday with so much pain and disability. I also have P.T.S.S but for different reasons. I have watched myself frustrate and burden my family. I have tried everything medically and alternative treatments to no avail. I also ask God what did I do to deserve this? I have been to shrinks along with everything else. I am not living, I am existing. I also go to bed every night and my prayer is always the same

Please God, take me home! I serve no purpose on this earth, just an intrusion in life! I held back in saying any of these words till I read your post, and finally felt able to speak the truth. I have read every book, I have researched and I come to the conclusion that the people who write these things I bet have never even had a headache. I read forums and my heart aches for everyone. I no longer want to go on, too cowardly to do anything about it. I could write my own book. God forgive me, but I despise the health care system and so many people I have met in it.

Many are not there to help, just to get big pay checks. I have been knocked around so much, and so sick of the Doctors just always being suspicious that you are drug seeking. I don't want any more drugs, I just want some peace! I am not going to find it in this world or this life. I am not writing, I hope, to upset anybody.

Accept this letter in the spirit with which it was written. Thank you for taking the time to even read it!

God Bless all of you! Don't know if I will be writing again!

Love, Pat


Nice rant. We all need to do this on occasion. One can feel so much better after it.

It is time to stop struggling. You are making work for yourself. You do not need any more work on top of the effort that can be required in handling the efforts of day to day pain.

"Job" in the old testament is a good book to read. It gives very good clues how to handle pain and illness. It does work.

Take time to study and notice your pain. Doing this you will notice the little things that ease it a fraction. Having found one thing you will find another.

As your are a bible reader I can remind you of the agony in the garden at "The Garden of Gethsemane". "Not mine but thine". Surrendering to this works. The difficulty is learning to know how to surrender and to understand what the original story tellers were trying to get at. This will take time as you have a lot of new skills that you need to develop.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with taking the first step. You then follow by another step.

Sometimes you have to chart your journey as you do it. You are your own explorer in uncharted territory. They are many on this site who have done their own travelling along the very difficult road of handing chronic pain. They are all there to offer the benefits of their experience.

Hope this helps


What a great message!


Dear Piper,

You have been through an actual war and are going through it again and again. I think you know that you need help, but nobody can make you do this. I promise you God is not mad at you. Bad things happen, that is a fact. I am now and here......... praying for God to give you the strength to get through this. One day at a time. Remember the Cross my dear friend, remember the Cross. I send you love with all my soul, please accept it.


Hello piper. For the sake of God do not give up.he took all your sins and pains on that cross at calvary so that you may walk in freedom. He has known you from the very beginning even before conception and praise god he will know us ffor eternity.

Things that we do in the here and now do have an effect on us and it sounds like you're going through a pretty bad time.

I am 53 and can't get around much but I keep having to talk and listen to the Lord tomget me through EVERY SITUATION and all the pain.

People will be praying for you. Get to a church that has got a lively outlook and a nuturing outlook.

God bless you my friend.


Hello again, Some practical advice/info here: 1. Look up the 'Pain Support' website - there is SO much good advice and practical help on there.

2. Consider some Alternative Therapies - get some info on same. Now, blokes tend not to favour these as much as women, but they can be very effective. In particular - something called SIRPA. Again, there is a website.

I will be back with some spiritual thoughts later.

God bless.


First off please know you are not alone! 2nd Thank you for serving our country! You have been through a lot that we can never understand but I do know pain and you need to get help, Please let your family in. They need to see what you are going though and support you no matter what! Just please promise you will get help. Your life is worth living and you are a great person.


Hi, so very sorry for all you have been through. Thank you for your service and God Bless You for all you have given. Now onto your health problems. I was sexually abused as a child, it messed up my private parts. Later when I was 20 I was repeatedly raped after being abducted and he urinated in my face twice among other terrible things. I couldn't understand why me...later in life I see that I got my mom back as she was an alcoholic at the time. It was a hard road and I felt fear at every turn. I made it though and am stronger for it. Since it was a family member that had done these horrible things to me it tore my family into for along time. My grandma passed before I had to go to court and we found out my dad had cancer. He died a year later. A few years later God gave me and my husband a beautiful baby girl. A year later I had my first kidney stone. I also found out I was pregnant again, I finally passed the stone but lost the baby. I then suffered for years with endometreois spelling is wrong. I ended up having a total hysterectomy at 30. I wanted more children but it wasn't meant to be. I'm 52 years old now and have lost all my family except my daughter and one uncle. I live with pain everyday. I have ruptured disks in my back, no fat in my feet, and fibromyalgia. I still get those terrible kidney stones sometimes also. I'm depressed a lot of the time. I have been disabled since 2003. You really need to see a doctor sweetheart. It won't be easy to get past all you have been through, but remember that with God's help you can do anything. God's gift to us is eternal life, our gift to God is our life on earth. I pray this helps you and you get the help you need. It's going to be a long hard road but I believe in you. You are stronger than you know!!! God Bless & Keep You!!! PLEASE DON'T GIVE UP!!!! xxxxx Mitzi


Mitziblue..oh my poor you..and some think they have has it hard hey.. god bless you




Mitziblue.see when read what you've been though..and we complain about sounds bad..I too was raped when was younger..didn't tell my mother has she was Always drunk..or beating me for not doing dishes..left home at 15.. lived with my grandparents. got job..messy head..drank my self draft..did draft stuff.having kids saved me..then the pain in back .legs.began..oh lost my first baby at 22 weeks.had a boy....years went on had 2 boys l gril. boys both ADHD. and austic.. off ten wonder what I've ever done..been a carer most my life..good one.had to give up work to look after my gran who's dementsure..granda 90.. dad died last year..drink.. had good job etc..All went wrong ..hallways drank but hit hard..worst thing I've had to see..didn't see him for year..then in hosptail hadn't shaven.skinny.. I dropped to floor..I blame my self for not going to help..,on top of this my mother who treat me like muck now lives near one will knew now much she hated me..kicked me out in snow when was 9.. one of things... now have to put behind me get her shopping go etc.. push the badto back my head..llife's been cruel.. when will it get better..feel like can't do any thing right..have to ripp my self in 10.. some say..they wouldn't be able to cope with my life..have to though..just keep going day to day..hope one day that things will get good.... my be..xxxx


Honey, I know, life can be cruel but God doesn't put anymore on us than we can stand...I know it seems like he pushes it sometimes!!! I'm so sorry that you have had such a horrible upbringing. That's uncalled for. But on the positive side it's made you a loving parent!!! It's hard I know to go through so much and go on. You are a wonderful person and I believe that the worse is behind you. I've had other bad stuff happen to me I didn't include. I try to look at the future and leave the past in the dust. It's hard but it will eat you up inside if you don't. Have you tried going to a pain clinic sweetheart? It really saved me. At least made my life bearable. I really believe that it would help your pain. As for your emotional pain, well time heals and if you take an anti-depressant that helps too. Please don't give up. Look and run for that pain clinic. You have so much to live for!!! Let me know if you get an appointment!! God Bless You And My He Watch Over You Always!!! xxx Mitzi


I was thinking about any advice and guidance I might find to pass on to you. This might help, so please look it up. PTSD used to be called 'Shell Shock' and was little understood in the days of WWI (centenary is this year). Fr William Doyle was a Military Chaplain and died on the battlefield of Ypres. He was commended for the VC and there is a campaign to obtain this for him posthumously. The sufferings he himself endured and witnessed in the soldiers were very great indeed. However, his writings give a great insight into how to cope with pain, despair, fear and all the terrible effects of being in a war zone. You will find much comfort in reading them, so do please give it a try. God bless.


Dear Piper You are a very brave man & you have failed no-one. Not only have you gone through battle and suffered excruciatingly painful wounds, you are also feeling the psychological agony of your experiences. Your battle scars are both physical and mental, and they are feeding each other. It takes enormous courage to deal with this on a daily basis. I have lived through PTSD (not combat related) and it is the most hellish, indescribable, painfull, overwhelming condition you can ever go through (even without physical wounds). People who have not experienced it cannot possibly understand what it's like, but on this forum you will know that all of us will really be rooting for you, wether we've had it or not. The hardest thing to do is to take that first step and acknowledge to yourself that your feeling overwhelmed. That takes real guts. Doing it here is your first step. I believe your family will understand. Sometimes others don't know what to say or how to react, sometimes out of fear of upsetting you & making things worse, so they remain silent. For as long as we struggle on pretending to the world & each other that we are coping and 'strong', people will want to believe that (I think). There is no shame in feeling overwhelmed by PTSD, it's what it is. Please go to your doctor - you need (and deserve) professional support. There is specialist help if you ask for it, medication, counselling, various things. For what it's worth, what I found most helpful was talking to others who had similar experiences and I joined a special group for this. I strongly recommend you take up tanami's offer to PM her as she will understand & it will be such a release to be 'heard' by someone who's been there. I also found Cranio-sacral therapy very helpful and it is noted for the way it helps PTSD sufferers. However, it's not a 'mainstream' treatment so it's only available privately. It gently released the shock from my body over a period of time, which eventually defused my triggers. Its also very good for physical pain too. Your emotional pain will make your physical pain worse and vice versa. Seek help, ask for help, don't bottle it all up inside. Keep us posted on here how you're feeling. I'm sending you positive thoughts & leave you with this quote I read some time ago - good luck - bonnie

"Even in times of trauma, we try to maintain a sense of normality until we no longer can. That, my friends, is called surviving. Not healing. We never become whole again ... we are survivors. If you are here today... you are a survivor. But those of us who have made it through hell and are still standing? We bear a different name: warriors." Lori Goodwin


Hello Piper, you sound really at your wits end. This is so sad when you have served your country. Sit back try to give yourself a rest till your back starts to improve and please please seek help for the flash backs. I speak as the mother of a army veteran who was in more than one war zone during his service and it does leave emotional scars. I am sure your family understand that and love you no matter what, and are proud of your bravery. Do you have any buddies who were there too and understand what you are going through that you can contact when things get really bad? I know people say you survived but at what cost as you say, life long memories that don't go away. Only those who have been there know how it feels. You & your family have my thoughts and hopes for a better time to come take care and don't rush yourself.


I am in shock that so many people out there do care for others and want to help. I am very thankful for everyone that took the time to read and reply to my post. I want and need to get help. I'm just scared and stubborn. I don't ask for help but I think I waited to long and find it hard to talk about. I can't give up. If it wasn't for my wife and kids I know I would not be here today. I can't do that to them. But I am very scared I might on the bad days. I pray that every day something will distract me from doing the most selfish and cowardly thing a man can do. I just can't live like this. I understand that only I can make the choice to get help but I can't ask, I don't know how to and feel less of a man if I do. I want to help others not myself. I guess its the way I was raised and who I am. Every day I find a reason not to end it all. I don't want to upset my family and friends because Steve can't handle it. I am crying for help in fear I am giving up and that's not me. I thank everybody for there words and thoughts. I just have to man up and walk in the V.A. and start talking. I'm just afraid.


Well, as mentioned, please take a few minutes to read some of the wonderful and inspiring writings of Fr William Doyle. He, himself, suffered a nervous breakdown in early life. However, he spent years on the WWI battlefield helping others and coping with his own fear and despair at times. His writings also contain much humour and wit. God bless. (


I care piper, I dont know you, have never met you but as a fellow human being I feel your pain and I care.If you finf it difficult to ask for help put together a letter just as you have on your post here.Give it to someone a doctor, the army contacts , a friend or family member, You have taken the first step coming on here.Maybe someone from church but give the letter to somebody.The samaritins are wonderful and will listen to you without judging Please do something. ? I care

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I know there are various alternative therapies out there to try. Look into them and the clinical evidence, as some are proven to be beneficial, but also look in any contraindications that won't interfere with any medication. For depression for example, there's Rhodiola rosea. It seems to calm you, help you sleep, but also gives you energy in the day. Nuts can be very beneficial for this too. Walnuts, Brazil nuts, pistachio nuts, all cross the blood brain barrier and contain essential fatty acids, which help with moods etc. sulfurophane is very good and is present in many vegetables such as Brocilli, cauliflower, but cooking kills it, so light steaming in a bag for 5 mins and add some mustard powder as this boosts sulforaphane levels, though you can buy supplements. If you do make sure they're the best certified. Another one is moringa Oleifera, used in many third world countries to help malnourished children, said to give a sense of well being and I believe help with pain. Tumeric is anti-inflammatory. SAD lamps can also boost seratonin levels and help with depression and anxiety, when the weather's against us and exersize in some form if you can. Eat healthily and use search engines to look at forums for help. Good luck.


Please see someone to help with your traumas of war. AND, find a way to tell your family about your pain. They need to know to help and support you. A good role model? It's not weakness to say I am in pain. It will be a huge relief for you to say it. Showing emotion is human, and although you may have been trained in the forces to cope in extreme situations, you need to learn to switch off. Living on adrenaline longtern is not good for you, and will be making your pain worse. It may be that you are hyper sensitive about your families safety because you feel like you are unable to protect them as you are not as strong physically as you used to be. You don't just need physical strength to protect your family, love, understanding, letting people be their own person, warmth, kindness, sharing, laughing, crying, sensevof humour, honesty all go a long way too.

If you do not feel ready to see someone, please try meditation, it will give your brain a rest fron all the anxiety you have, there are many on you tube, choose one you like. Try also study music for relaxation, also foundc on you tube. You could listen to this with your kids.

You are not alone. We all have different life experiences here. Some have reached a compromise, others are still on the journey. But everyone will say, you have to take that first step to get yourself better, by seeing appropriate medics, therapists and it will all be easier with your family supporting you.

This is you here in the now. We only have now, the past has gone and the future's not here yet. It seems like there is no future, but one step at a time, live in the moment, tackle one issue at a time and you will see small amounts of progress.


Thank you so very much for that. I have tryed many things but only helps for so long. I'm just scared


It's normal to be scared. Scared for your health and ability, for your future, for your family. It does lessen the more you get in touch with your pain and body. Yes, there are many things you can't do just now, but that will change slowly. If it helps, get the family together, and make a list of things you can do with them. Kids need parents that are there more than parents who fill the day with activity. Simple things work too. When I was resting and mine were little, I set up a small table with paper and crayons. We had a silly time, I'd suggest things for them to draw- a giraffe, rollerskating, wearing a purple hat, eating icecream. They were happy because I was there, not drawing but being a part of it.

And kids have amazing insight in to how to make things work for you and how they can help. Despite the reason, it's a great way to bond and strengthen the family unit.

You can't run around playing football with them, but you could maybe be on the sidelines making a video. I did a lot of home based things with mine, baking, sewing, painting. Housework was party time, hot choc and donuts and we took turns each week to choose the music. I felt bad that they had to help more than other kids so I made it as fun as I could.


Hi Piper

You are in my thoughts and my prayers. I have fibro and of course, constant pain. My consultant prescribed Tramadol Slow Release. My husband had 2 back surgeries and again hurt his back and is also in a lot of pain. He has also been taking Tramadol Slow Release - and it works!!!! Just take it regularly until you are stronger. Do not forget your physio exercise which makes your body stronger and is necessary. Just be the same hero you were and do this for yourself in order to be a great dad and husband.

With love and understanding.


silly old fashioned remedy dear, its called Valerian tincture get it at a very good herb shop with a proffesional herbalist my grandmother a herbalist used it to help shell shock victims in the second world war take it one hour before bed about 20 drops in warm water and it relaxes muscles and helps you sleep without affecting your brain . nightmares and reliving experiences will fade but valerian can help you at least get some relaxed sleep

dont take it every night just when your having a bad night like anything else dont overuse a good thing its not cheap and you will have to sign for it with a herbalist mine costs about 12 pounds but the bottle lasts months and months. my brother had nightmares and damage when in bomb disposal his arm muscles were very bad but this helped him and got him through to so i hope it helps you to and do show your wife your post you dont have to tell her then she will totaly understand and do listen to her she is upset and worried and need you to so give each other a cuddle ok :) and get medical help depression and shell shock is not that unusual and the doctor i promise wont be judging you he will be trying his best to help but help yourself by taking your pride and ego out of the equation and realising sometimes we need to ask for help not just give it

a lesson i learned many years ago and something we all eventually have to learn :)


Hi first you have my respect for the job you have done for you country, I cant take your pain away, and I am not able to say I know what you are going through, as I have not experienced what you have , that would be patronising. Have the forces offered any kind of help? I feel that you have done the right thing by communicating through this site, are there any ex service friends you may feel able to talk to ? You may be surprised by the amount of ex service persons who are going through pretty much the same as you, and , I am aware that you do not feel able to talk with anyone. However, many people have said the same as you, and when they finished talking, nine times out of ten , they would say it has helped .Please do not dismiss talking to anyone. I experience constant pain, and was finished work some years ago on health grounds, its communicating with other people on the internet that keeps me going. More recently, I at times not able to talk I struggle to get my words out, and by lad I don't arf swear when I am not able to get my words out. My family laugh at me when I try to speak and stammer then swear, and I laugh with them. I would feel worse if they give me sympathy. We all have our own ways for coping and, you say the bible helps, I would say continue to read the bible .I do feel that you should not be going through this alone, is your Doctor any help? You are not being punished, what you are is in pain, Please take care I wish you well


Piper-cub.back .pain in are..I too have had lower back operation took few month to get over-let me tell you granda was in ww 2.. bad . They were staved mentally beaten..made to watch there friends ....can't say...was in prison of war camp the stroys he's told me frighten me...they have made a film about it.someone from posh private school with men that still alive..then then war was over got on with job was boss in a factory .job whet wrong sucked he's foot in chued if up cars in them days..had to walk miles with help to hosptail 30 min on with it...had he's gall bladder out couple years ago..I couldn't off coped with stuff from them days..hes been though hell alright..sorry can't go arem pain killers like we have one to talk to like we have..had to come home to not knewing if any houses still did they cope.push the things they saw ????do we now have different doctors?? Who have learened different..I feel I am punished..never loved has a kid..left home at 15. Have 3 kids 2austisic.. since my 20 so.all iI've knew is pain..back. upper lower..joint.Cant I going nuts prop.. been a carer for years .good an too.. on hold..with my dam back..oh lost my dad 55 last year drink..birthday too..think I am getting punished. Turned down my last L5 sl operation disc comes right out..worse then last time..


I am a fellow chronic pain sufferer and I wish to pass on what I read from a book, “The Pain Chronicles…” from Melanie Thernstrom. “Imagine…a community of consumptives (tuberculosis), coughing blood in the 19th century sanatoriums. Hippocrates, who, in the 5th century, warned his colleagues against visiting patients who had advanced consumption because their inevitable deaths might damage the physicians’ reputations.

“Through the centuries there were many theories about consumption’s causes—heredity, evil spirits, vampirism, vapors, sewage, swamp land odors, sin, and corruption within the body. In the 19th century a fashionable conception of the disease was as a spiritualizing struggle between the body and the soul, in which the mortal flesh was slowly consumed in a way that heightened both beauty and creativity” (Oh, give me a break). But in 1882, a German physician identified Mycobacterium Tuberculosis as the cause for consumption. Four thousand (4000) years of myth vanished in a moment when a strain of bacteria was discovered to be the cause! Consumption/Tuberculosis was a disease, not a state of being! Although the cure—antibiotics—was still half a century away, there was a diagnosis!”

“Even in the absence of treatment...sufferers may benefit from knowing that they are not possessed by spirits, and it may help depressed people to know that their condition is not a failure of character. Surely the consumptives and epileptics would have felt relief…to finally know what their disease was—and what it was not. It was not a curse. It was not an expression of personality or a punishment. For better and for worse, it was and is a disease.”

How true this is! I have been suffering with horrible pain from head to toe, inside & out for many years. I too served my country and was injured in the line of duty though not on a battlefield. I lost everything. There are many times that I too just wanted to give up. Sometimes at night I just ramble on out loud by myself to “whoever is listening” that I am tired of this crap and “what is the point of all this pain? What do you want from me?” Years ago, I thought the same things you did. Though I was a “good” person, after my injury I studied this religion and that religion, this spiritual teaching and that spiritual teaching, trying to find out “what I am supposed to do.” I studied the Bible day & night. I worked at a Church. I went on weekend silent retreats to fast & confess my sins… I went on “holy pilgrimages.” I thought my pain was the result of all my sins, of past karma and of “life lessons” I was to learn here on Earth School. I thought I was possessed by a demon and was in need of a “deliverance.” I prayed & prayed. Meanwhile, my conditions worsen.

Then I started to “see” what really was going on—how I was chasing my tail. I will spare you the details but I can say that I just “woke” up from all the bull crap. My views of “God” changed drastically. I thought I was on a “spiritual path” but I found out that people on the path, both religious & spiritual, are no different than people in the secular world. The common thread of all teachings is there will be suffering in life and there are ways to lessen the pain. Pain does get your attention! It starts you on a search of sorts. It is a journey you must take. No one else can tell you how to walk it or what to do. There is no “one way” but many ways. It was time for me to let go of all the fairy tales including the adult ones and to give up our expectations of how life should be.

I finally realized that my injury triggered something, perhaps an inherited gene, which has been passed down for many generations in my family. I know of four generations who suffered from horrible pain & disability similar to mine and it worsens as you get older. It manifested as Rheumatoid Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, Lupus and other types of Arthritis. Now I am caring for my mom who had severe RA. It is hard to watch your parents disintegrate before you, knowing that you are going to follow the very same path. It is like the days of consumption when the doctors don’t even want to bother with you. To them, you are a difficult patient with a “complicated” problem.

Chronic pain has been around for thousands of years and I will bet that eventually they will find what is causing all this darn pain. Maybe it is a virus, a bacteria, a brain/central nervous system dysfunction… Doctors say ED is a disease but not chronic pain. They have drugs to deal with ED but they don’t know a darn thing about chronic pain. My advice is to hang in there. Go to the library and read. Search the internet. Learn about your conditions. Find out what treatments are out there. Finding a good doctor (orthopedic surgeon, a neurologist, a therapist, a rheumatologist…) takes time. After 13 years, I finally have a Rheumatologist that is like a Dr. House. I know all too well about the suspicion the docs have. Hang in there. I don’t have a family but do have a family meeting with the kids and try to explain what you are experiencing and that it will take time to get a handle on it. Yes, it is hard to be around people and to enjoy your family when you are in a lot of pain. It is a life changing experience! Take it one hour at a time, even one minute at a time if need be. You are a wonderful role model! Be proud (in a good way) of what you have done for your country. It takes a very courageous person to do what you did! Dealing with pain has been the hardest thing I have dealt with in my entire life. I have to dig deep & find that physical & mental toughness I had years ago to deal with this pain on a daily basis. Your kids will understand later on when they experience a life alternating injury. When they are young they are convinced that it won’t happen to me. Try not to let the pain take over your thoughts. It indeed is a battle of a different kind. Do the best you can with your family. Try not to get angry. Disciple in still the key—physically & mentally. Give up the smoking. Don’t drink… Things will get better in time. Try to find other vets who also have battle injuries at a vet hospital & online whom you can share your pain with. See what is available for pain management & PTSD. Hang in there!


How you doing since last post?


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