When Your Language Is Pain, Why Don’t Others Understand You?

Pain is difficult to communicate to others. It is almost impossible to explain exactly what we are experiencing. So many times we find ourselves trying to explain to doctors or therapists what we are feeling either physically or emotionally and they simply do not seem to understand. Let’s forget the professionals for a minute. How about trying to share with family or friends? They may listen for a while, but many times they leave us as well because they simply cannot understand the language we are speaking.

Many children have invisible friends. To the child, the invisible friend is very real and exists regardless of the fact that others cannot see him/her. The child finds themselves having engaging conversations with their friend and playing any number of games with them. And, they are always happy companions. Adults don’t mind their child’s relationship with their invisible friend and children outgrow that relationship as they mature.

Pain is very much the same as a child’s invisible friend except I would refer to it as our invisible nemesis. Our invisible nemesis is with us wherever we go; a constant companion. Just like a child’s invisible friend, others cannot see our invisible nemesis. We may lash out at our nemesis in mental or audible conversation, but he/she does not go away. Others aren’t so accepting of our relationship and we may find ourselves without support and rejected both socially and professionally. We don’t play games with our invisible nemesis; he/she plays painful physical and emotional games with us. And, we don’t simply “outgrow” this relationship. But, if they – doctors, therapists, family, friends – can’t see our invisible nemesis, our pain, does it really exist?

Of course it does! Pain is very real whether it is physical or emotional. So what is the barrier that exists between the medical community and the patient? Linguistics and the the scientifically accepted definition of pain.

My guest on Your Life After Trauma is Dr. David Biro. Dr. Biro has experienced pain himself having went from Doctor to Patient when he was diagnosed and survived cancer. Through his personal experience, Dr. Biro has written numerous articles as well as two books (The Language of Pain & Listening to Pain) on the relationship between physical and psychological pain and the importance of broadening the definition from only physical injury to the inclusion of emotional pain.

Join us on air Wednesday, 2pm EST, for a deeper discussion about this topic. Plus, you can call in to win our PROJECT GIVE BACK giveaway!

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