MoxieGirl Posted April 11, 2019 Share Posted April 11, 2019 I've come across a few posts recently where people have said that those around them don't believe, or understand, the level of pain created by a cluster attack. That they think it's just a migraine. I thought I'd start a post on how to adequately describe the pain of a cluster attack. Feel free to jump in with your own examples. Also, I've made it a habit to call them 'cluster attacks', not 'cluster headaches'. I personally feel the word headache undermines the severity of what we go through. In my mind (and in my descriptions below) I view them as an attack. No one gets PTSD from a headache, but you can get PTSD from an attack, and that's what these things are. At least, that's how I see them. Here's my favourite one that I've used that seems to get the point across. Quote Think back to the last time you had a really bad muscle cramp, which most people will have gotten in their calf muscle at one time or another. Remember how the pain came on suddenly, how it crippled you and how it drew in 100% of the focus of your mind. All you could think about was the pain in your leg and when would it stop? The world around you completely melted away apart from that intense, relentless pain. Think back to how you would have done anything, absolutely anything, to stop that pain. Most people don't remember actual pain, but they can remember how it affected their thinking and changed what they were doing, how it altered their focus. So it's important to remind them of that. Yes, something 'hurt', but how much did it hurt is difficult to get across. But, if something hurt so much it consumed all of your thinking for 5 minutes, and you couldn't focus or see anything apart from the pain, people will remember that. Once you have someone thinking back to their muscle cramp, and how it made them stop what they were doing and fall down on the ground, gripping their leg for all their worth and crying, or virtually crying, you can get them to see the all encompassing impact the pain had on them. Then, you can take them to the next visualisation, of increasing and relocating that pain to an even more sensitive spot on the body. It helps to remind them that in that moment, they would have done ANYTHING to stop the pain. Now, double that level of pain. Then, double it again. Then, compress it down to the size of a golf ball and relocate it to your eye and have it run at that level for 3 hours. Here's another one I like, slightly more graphic. Quote Imagine 3 large men break into your house at random times during the day and night. While two men pin you down on your sofa, the third man props your leg up on the coffee table and begins to saw it off, just below the knee, with an old rusty saw. Once that leg is off, he moves to the other leg. While working on the 2nd leg, the first leg grows back. Back and forth he works, cutting one leg off, then the other, waits for them to grow back, then repeats. For 2-3 hours. Then they leave, and both your legs grow back within minutes. You know they'll be back. You just don't know when or how many times today. And a third description. Quote Imagine you're walking down the street on a beautiful day. As you emerge from behind a corner of a building, someone smacks you on the eyebrow with an aluminium baseball bat, having swung the bat with all of their might. You are knocked backwards off of your feet, and land hard on the ground. The assailant instantly pounces on you, and begins to gouge your eyeball out with red hot crochet needle. Once your eyeball is out, and hanging on your cheek, they proceed to pour liquid nitrogen (that liquid that freezing anything solid in seconds) into your empty eye socket. I could go on, but I'm probably grossing you out now. The first one is a really good one though. Mox Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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