People often ask me why therapy is quite so painful. I am often struck by the fact that therapy is perceived as painful but in fact the pain was already there, just buried. Pain will go and on until it is looked at, examined, turned inside out and then eventually it will begin to drift away, therapy brings this pain to the surface to enable this to be done.
You see pain has its uses. Someone described it to me rather like a nagging child that is constantly tugging at your coat sleeve. The child will keep tugging away until, eventually you take notice. And it is when you begin to take notice that the pain can be looked at.
I am of course not talking bout masochistic pain, but pain in an emotional sense. Pain in a physical sense does however work in a similar way.
Again many years ago someone who was teaching me the Alexander Technique mentioned that they suffered from scoliosis of the back. But instead of bemoaning the fact they seemed pleased. I was puzzled. Why would you be pleased to be in pain? She explained that the pain was not constant but when she suffered it made her realise she was doing something her back did not like. She took notice. And having taken notice she looked at why she was in pain, and changed what she did. And when she did this, the pain disappeared.
From an emotional sense it is similar.
It is of course unpleasant and very hard to look at and examine our past, but without looking at our pain, how can we change how we feel about our past and ensure that we no longer carry it in the present?
Yes pain is useful, it allows us, when we notice it, to change. Of course pain killers and medication have their uses and anyone who knows me will know I am not against medication, but to medicate in isolation will only mask the symptoms, and eventually like the nagging child pain will once again begin to tug at your coat sleeve.

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