By | July 28, 2011 93 Comments

Dealing with illness and chronic pain through nutrition and environmental changes

Editor’s note: Diane Dawber is a founder of the Health Pursuits Reading Group. A Lovefraud reader suggested the following contribution on alternative health strategies. Please remember that Lovefraud is not a medical resource, and if you are suffering from symptoms like those discussed below you should consult a doctor.

Adrenals and PTSD

By Diane Dawber

In 1996, a small group of mostly professionals, felled too early by chronic illnesses such as Fibromyalgia (FM), Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS), asthma, arthritis, etc., started studying together to see what they could do for themselves since the medical system did not have much to offer. With books recommended by the few doctors who were studying nutrition, environment, diet, etc., they read, tried out the strategies, discussed results and compiled data.

After spending a million dollars on diets, supplements, therapies, etc, they have narrowed down to some strategies that are cost, time and results effective.  All the original members, as well as many others, are using these strategies and they are so much better than they were 15 years ago, despite all being in their sixties.  The group is now incorporated as a Canadian not-for-profit, Health Pursuits Reading and Research: MEND. The goal is to help as many people as they can, despite no funding other than memberships.  Diseases receive funding.  Political action receives funding.  Getting well doesn’t rate.


I myself was the worst case of FM my Toronto doctor had ever seen.  After 25 years as a teacher, in 1990 I was disabled and totally unable to be active in my career.  I was in terrible pain 24/7.  I could check my email once a week with difficulty. I could lift only a pound without repercussions.  I couldn’t sit or stand or walk for 5 minutes without worse pain.  Plus, I have contradictory reactions to opiates like codeine.  I was so chemically sensitive that I couldn’t read a newspaper or go downtown without headache and nausea from fumes. I thought my life was over.

The worst thing was that doctors took one look at my file and saw that my mother had committed suicide when I was 8, and a string of other unpleasant events through the rest of my life. My illness must be psychological.  Just didn’t want to work.  The hypnotherapy doctor told me that I was just showing off when I got a Masters degree. You can read the horror story in my book, Lifting the Bull (Quarry Press, 1999), which I assembled page by painful page as the reading group and I explored the alternate medical universe.

In 1995, I started working with Dr. Kathleen Kerr and Dr. Lynn Marshall at the Environmental Health Clinic in Toronto.  Dr. Kerr recommended books on nutrition, diet and environmental clean-up.  We learned of other books from the few similar doctors.  I got rid of chemicals and mold.  I did the IgG allergy testing and changed my diet to eliminate problem foods.  I had blood testing to identify some deficiencies.  I had osteopathic treatment for biomechanical problems.

Now I’m 65 and today I cleaned up the house, did errands, went to my exercise class, made a big batch of soup, walked for an hour, worked in the garden, did emails and other writing all without pain or fatigue.

Adrenal function

One particular nutritional area of study has proven most useful.  That is adrenal function.  Adrenals mediate allergic/stress responses, in other words, PTSD.  When a situation provokes an adrenaline response, blood vessels narrow, blood pressure goes up, rational thought is suppressed in favour of ‘flight or fight,’ glucose dumps into the blood stream driving up blood sugar, fluids are lost, digestion either stops or empties you get the picture.  This is not a good state in which to make decisions about anything from what to eat to what do with your future.

Adrenaline spikes, you get a buzz, and then what?  Adrenaline must be processed by our bodies.  Then the adrenals need to make more.  After many such episodes, the nutrients the adrenals require to function may become deficient so they cannot respond as well.  Then when an incident provokes an adrenaline response, you become extremely fatigued and have lots of other symptoms.  Uzzi Reiss’ book, The Natural Superwoman, has a good chapter on adrenaline, explaining different stages of adrenal wear and tear.  (Research cortisol as well.)


The biochemical elements that are used in processing adrenaline are being studied.  Many years ago, Dr. Jonathon Wright wrote a newsletter on adrenals in which he stated that B5, B6, magnesium and salt were nutritional supports for adrenal glands.  There is also a supplement made from the actual ground-up adrenal material from ovine, bovine or porcine sources.  In our group, we discovered the work of Dr. Lendon Smith and Dr. John Kitkowsky, in Lendon Smith’s book, Feed Your Body Right.  Their olfactory test has proven to be a useful tool in figuring out what nutrients we need and how much; and monitoring the balance.  We found, using the olfactory test, that we are very individual in our supplement needs. Our research in this area is on-going.

Myself, I had been taking 1000 mg of pantothenic acid (B5,) 700 mg of magnesium, 120 mg of the special B6 (pyridoxal 5 phosphate or P5P) as well as one of the ground-up adrenals supplements daily. I found that I was not having the overwhelmed, hitting-bottom feeling that signals much stressed adrenals, but I wasn’t feeling very perky either.  With 500 mg more of B5 and 50 mg more of P5P, things improved dramatically.  Using our nutrient test kit, I checked to make sure this was not driving something else down and sure enough riboflavin, B2, also needed an increase.  Since doing these things, I no longer need the ‘ground-up adrenal’ supplement, which pleases me as it indicates that I am coming closer to healing my adrenals.  I also notice more tolerance of all the different types of stressors as you will see enumerated below.


One stressor for me, which no one picked up until just two months ago, was my ribs.  My 11th and 12th ribs on the left were jammed up under my 10th rib.  This was probably caused by a childhood fall.  I was a free-range child with my mother very ill and then gone, so I had some nasty falls on my back from a hay loft, on my chest when my sister and I were playing cowboys and she tied me up and another on my middle when standing on a large log that rolled.  The effect on my digestive, respiratory and adrenal system of having these ribs poking my innards can only be guessed.  Fortunately, my osteopath finally was able to figure it out and release them.  I’m now having the fun of stretching out very old scar tissue.

Members of Health Pursuits Reading and Research would define stress on a wider basis than most:

  • Air-borne exposures such as chemicals, molds, pollens and danders;
  • Water-borne exposures such as bacteria, chemicals, hormones, lead, asbestos, chlorine, fluride and varying mineral content;
  • Food reactions including IgE (anaphylactic symptoms) and IgG sensitivities (non-anaphylactic, inflammatory symptoms such as fatigue, brain fog, muscle pain), and inability to digest some foods such as gluten (wheat family grains) or casein (dairy products);
  • Deficiencies of crucial nutrients whether macronutrients such as protein or essential fatty acids or micronutrients such as vitamin D, vitamin C, B vitamins or minerals;
  • Movement difficulties such as poorly-integrated reflexes, scars from surgeries, injuries or birth trauma, genetic malformations, as well as
  • Life events or situations (which are more commonly viewed as stress).

When you add in the natural hormonal variations of the female body, especially as it approaches big changes like pregnancy or menopause, then you can see this is a big complicated task to manage.

One story

A member of Health Pursuits Reading and Research did a brilliant thing recently.  She has PTSD (from abuse) and was having anxiety attacks lasting 5 hours or more.  She decided to try our nutrient test kit at the beginning of an anxiety attack to see what nutrients would become deficient.  She did this and took the items indicated.  The anxiety attack was gone in about half an hour.  She has repeated this strategy in order to hone in on her specific requirements when anxiety does attack.  A complication is that different combinations of stressors can trigger the anxiety attacks.

This member had a long history of relational trauma from first family to later partners and an equally long history of psychological therapies to deal with these.  Like so many members of our group, she did not begin to realize the effect of other factors until she joined us four years ago.  At that point, she began by using our nutrient test kit to monitor, at first almost daily, her nutrient requirements.   She also started to investigate her food sensitivities, finding a big difference in the effect of some foods, e.g., she is quite sensitive to poison ivy, and foods like cashews and mango, which are related, cause trouble.  Gluten and dairy were also found to be problematic.  Then there was the damp, moldy basement of her home.  A death in the family, the realization that her home was not a safe place for her and possibly stress from sudden release of stored toxins with the improvement of nutrition all caused a temporary slide into dysfunction.  From a women’s shelter, she was still able to arrange to sell her home, buy another one and move within a few months.

Once in a non-moldy home, other stressors revealed themselves.  Hormones were out of balance, so testing and supplementation of estrogen and progesterone with bioidenticals were a relief.  Paint, renovation materials, traffic fumes, oil furnace fumes all caused reactions anxiety reactions, which she was at first unused to relating to chemicals. Through it all, she maintained her nutritional program, adjusting it as she (and we) learned more. She tried to deal with the dietary issues too.  These are difficult because reactions to chemicals and other stressors can make food cravings worse.  I myself become very hungry when exposed to petrochemicals as at a gas station.  Then she did the experiment with the anxiety attacks.

Now she is back in her circle of family and friends, has a stable relationship, runs her own business, works out with a friend, and walks and plays with her new puppy  all of which continue to pump in the positive neurochemicals that help her keep well. She is a fan of movies with humor and fun as well to keep her spirits up.  She is quick to cancel events that are overload items and to use groups like Weight Watchers, Al-Anon, as well as help-phone lines to bridge the gap as the nutrients take time to heal the basic problems.

More information

To work through the issues, you can go to our web site, the content of which is our whole basic workbook.  For more detailed help, you can then go to our blog at  That is what we can supply for free.  Hard copies of our book on diet are available for $20 and our whole test kit costs $185 (which a group of people could share since it is reusable for at least 2 years as many times as wished.)

When the dominos fall, prying up just one is difficult and will not make it easier to lift the others.  Action on as many dominos as possible is necessary.  Awareness of the possibilities, observation and patience in trying strategies will help you succeed.

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Hope to heal

I have begun reading at the Health Pursuits Reading Group’s website. I am hoping to learn about detoxing not only myself, but my family’s environment too. I am also interested in learning about how supplements can help in reducing the negative effects that stress has on our bodies.

Thanks so much for posting this article!

Best wishes to all in your journey to mental and physical health.



Thank you so much for posting this article!!!!
I can see that in Canada, PTSD and the associated symptoms receive excellent attention! Yes: I absolutely agree that eating correctly will help the state we are in. Definitely. Taking care of ourselves and I like what you said H2H: “detoxing myself and my family’s environment too!” That is really and truly about it. 🙂 I have noticed that since I started taking care of myself, just about 3 months ago, now, that it DOES help clear the mind and thought pattern enabling me to ground myself and make better strides to achieving the peace I so desperately need in my life.

YAY! Good luck H2H!! Go Team!! 😉



One/Joy and Super Dupster: Thought of you two right away but this is great imformation for all of us. Love. Shalom

Hope to heal

Dupedster ~ It really does help to attend to our nutritional needs. We try to stay away from processed foods as much as possible. We grow our some of our own vegetables to avoid the insecticides used in commercially grown vegetables. Also, the things we do buy in the store, such as strawberries and other fruits are washed with soap and water to remove as much of the chemicals and such that are on them.
I am glad to hear that you are well on your way to achieving peace in your life 🙂 That is SO important!! Yay for you!!

Good luck to you also in your continuing journey!!



Shalom – I asked Diane to write this piece for lf. 🙂


One of the things that is important to understand when we talk of using supplements is that they are used in different ways: sometimes as ‘nutritional’ supplements and sometimes ‘therapeutically’. This distinction is important.

People who blanch at the idea of taking does of certain supplements that might be considered above average by some, do not yet know this distinction. I do not take a supplement to maintain my good health; i am using a regime that is ever evolving to get my health back.

Health Pursuits has been very important to me as I struggle with the environmental and chemical injuries and the PTSD – all have been huge drains on my adrenals. Diane is very knowledgeable and has helped me a lot.


I wish that the thread title had PTSD in it. although many of us suffer from chronic pain and illness, almost all of us have PTSD.


Thanks one/joy….yes; very important subject for all of us! PTSD or not! Coming through such a torrid emotional experience as we have, keeping our nutrition up is not only difficult but NECESSARY so we need to pay extra attention to our diet and hydration. I KNOW. I lost a total of 75lbs in less than a year due to STRESS, just before my heart attack. After ALMOST 3 months of NC, I am happy to report that I have gained back 30 of that 75 I have lost. I am very petite and small structure so this huge weight difference meant a lot to me! 🙂

Oh yes, I eat NO FAST FOOD. Fast food is the scourge of the nutritional chain. I always eat fresh and healthy. Of course, with my heart condition, NOW, I am on a low sodium, low fat diet, which I had always been conscious of before, though, prior to my heart attack.

People tend to ‘forget’ about our nutritional needs on the whole, ANYWAYS, but when we are in an emotional state as we are, our bodies not only need to meet their DAILY requirements but we need to give it just a little extra attention during this time in our lives. It only helps us heal. LOTS of fruits and vegetables! LOTS of fiber! 😉

Oh heavens, yes: LOTS of store bought food is not healthy, either, but at least when you cook from scratch, you get all those nutrients and vitamins we need and that our body needs. An effective warrior will not only sustain themselves but be in physical shape to defeat their enemy. 😉

Thanks Shalom and one/joy: hope you have a good evening.


Hope to heal

One/Joy ~ I thought it might have been you 🙂 Maybe if you write to Donna, she would adjust the title to include PTSD in it.

GREAT contribution. I think they are providing some good information there, judging from what I’ve read so far.

I DO want to learn about using supplements to get back to a healthy balance. I already take daily vitamin supplements for basic nutrition, but I want to learn what I need to do to help both my husband and myself get over the effects of dealing with the years of ups and downs with his ex-SSV.

Thanks for sharing!!



Diane and One Joy,
thank you for getting this article to us. I’ve been neglecting myself and B5 is one that I know I need but forgot all about. This is a great reminder and the nice gentle push I needed.

are you taking any supplements for your heart condition?
Magnesium is very helpful for the heart.


I am not a health nut but I do take vitamins, eat well, and I cook for myself. I grow a few veggies, and visit farmers market often.
Dupey.. I lost around 25 lbs,, during and after the relationship from hell, all due to stress and lack of sleep and depression. I am 5′ 11” and my normal weight is 180…I was down to 155 and looked like death. My weight loss is what got my son’s attention and he gave me a lecture that kinda woke me up and pushed me to start taking better care of myself. I am back up to 180lbs.. I also had horrible back and hip problems that have healed with the weight gain.. But I remember feeling like I had dementia, my brain just didnt function, doing simple task was overwhelming….I guess it was all stress and ptsd related…anyway he almost killed me, I think it was his plan,,, but it didnt work,,,I am fat and sassy again ~!!!

Hope to heal

Hens ~ I’ve never been a health nut either, but I try to eat healthy. Gee, I haven’t experienced ANY weight loss, in fact it’s exactly the opposite for me. I’m a comfort eater, I guess.

Still trying to work up the gumption to get off my duff and get this bod back into some semblance of decent physical shape. ho hum…


Hi Hope.. I am one of those lucky people that can eat a whole carrot cake and half gallon of icecream and never gain a pound.. I do love to eat.. My cholestrol is good…
I am very active tho. I need to join a gym just for the eye candy…~!


🙂 hens, you are cute: ‘eye candy’! 😉

No, I don’t take extra supplements but try to maintain my diet in a healthy way. I am a sweets kind of person and always am forcing myself away from them.

It’s weird because when NC started 3 months ago, (on monday!), I couldn’t hardly eat at all. I was slowly starving myself and IT saw what it was doing to me. It has no conscious. If I had died right then and there, it wouldn’t have mattered. I was the weak and being eaten. I wasn’t about to let that happen. It took more than a lot from me but it didn’t and isn’t going to take my life for it’s sickness.

H2H: (((hugs))) Hope you and you too, hens, are well and doing alright. I am starting to do well. I have been doing lots of EMDR therapy in the past couple weeks and it is helping me. Since I was formally ‘retired’ due to my medical condition, I spend a lot of time just eating, resting, reading and learning as much as I can. I get LOTS of exercise and try to stay in as good shape as I CAN for 60 years old! Zeesh: this should be ALMOST considered ‘elder abuse’ at this stage of life. 🙂

After almost 9 months since heart attack, I can FINALLY start taking something to relieve aches and pains!!! Imagine that. I was forbidden to take ANYTHING other than heart meds until now so even an extra aspirin was out of the question.

I wouldn’t have survived if I hadn’t of cut it off and NC’d it when I did. I can truthfully tell you this. IT would have killed me (on more than one occasion-I was so in denial…)

And it would laugh and mock me and say: “hahaha: what are you talking about? all the bad things i have done to you, you sat there and allowed it to happen, so what is wrong with YOU?!” hahahaha – yes, it came to THAT ‘chilling’ realization. Then when I had my heart attack, I came to believe that yes, IT in more ways than one, tried to take my life from me.

CAN I be cruel to my best friend? Hmm? IT is HOPING I can’t. IT is hoping I won’t. And, “I” say: I am not giving up one more moment of my lifetime for anymore of this. Once I am out of my ‘mania’, I am closing this door in my life, forever and never looking back. I have almost come to the point where I can say: “WHO?” THAT is how well I have been reconditioning my wires. 🙂 It takes time. It is a process, not an event.

Take care you guys – oh, almost forgot…
My private cell phone number was called tonight and it should never ring. I traced the phone number and know right where it came from although I do not know the party who called. 🙂

The stalking begins….
Let’s see if it escalates over the weekend… hmmm?

Just like “Hannibal”…

Duh duh duh Super Dupey Dupedster

Hope to heal

Hens ~ I have never had a very high metabolism, although I’ve heard that it’s something that can change. I used to have physically active jobs. That helped a LOT. Then I got a “real” job behind a desk. Much better bennies, but talk about LOW activity.
My fingers stayed in GREAT shape with all the data entry I was doing lol.

Duh duh duh Super Dupey Dupedster ~ HUGS right back atcha!! You are one amazing woman!!! Keep up the NC and you will be victorious!!!




Oh, no…I hope it wasn’t him.

Ox Drover

Aloong with the PTSD (sudden event) when my husband died, I got mega stress, because for the previous year I had also been primary carer for my stepfather as well who was dying with cancer. My health was the least of my concerns.But during that time I had three major infections that were life threatening. Immune system knocked out by continual stress as well as the loss of the two people closest to me in my life.

Three years after the deaths of both my husband and my step dad, in 2007, the SUMMER OF CHAOS fell upon me and I fled my home for my own safety. That summer I got another serious infection from a tick bite and was very very ill that summer.

A couple of years ago I started to seriously work on my own health. First, I quit smoking which I had done for many decades. Put them down, made a vow and have stuck with it. I also realized I had gained a considerable amount of weight which was causxing my blood sugar to go u and causing my blood pressure to rise, so aM not on a low sodium and lower calorie died. I’ve lost 30+ pounds but now have plateaued and need to get back on the wagon and lose another 30.

My exercise has bee a part of the weight loss as well….eating fruits and vegetables, no salt (Had to learn a different way of cooking and give up processed meats: ham bacon, hot dogs, and cheese) but am learning to have all the rest of the things I love without salt and they still taste good.

I keep my sodium to the recommended below 1500 mg per day, and usually lower. The swelling in my feet has resolved without medication.

I keep my calories between 1500-1800 per day, my blood sugar does not move out of the “normal” range.

I take a multivitamin
four 1,000 mg fish oil capsules
coated Aisprin for pain
B6 for my carpal tunnel syndrome (it is good for nerve conduction)
A complete B_complex as my blood lab showed I was low in B vitamins
I don’t take calcium as my bones are strong and I do eat considerable dairy products
1 eat one ounce of Almonds per day
1 eat one ounce of flax seed per day as well
6-8 servings of vegetables and fruits
Oat or corn flours or meal
Prunes and raisins
4-8 ounces of grass fed LOW FAT organic beef I raise myself and process myself

My blood pressure is normal now, without medication, my blood sugar is normal now, again without medication, and I am sleeping better, and feeling better both mentally and physically.

IN addition to taking care of my nutritional needs, taking care of my emotional needs is as important I think. “Cleaning house” of all the “dirt” (dysfunctional people”) and sweeping them out the door leave my house with enough room for PEACE to move in and stay.


Louise: I have changed my cellphone number AT LEAST six times in the past four months. IT doesn’t have it and IT can’t call my HOME or my cell. So, IT has others call me. I get calls like this from all over the place. Every time a number comes in that I don’t know or don’t recognize, I just block it now. I have a lot of security in order to reach me by phone or in person. That is why I am always suspect when I am contacted like this.

It’s just another way of IT keeping the pot stirred.
That’s all there is to that. It’s alright. You guys should see the logs and logs and logs. I have chronicled everything that transpired between us from the very beginning. I have so much legal evidence against IT I could put it away for a very long time and the saddest and most disgusting part of all this is I have never asked IT for a thing except to live ITS life the right way and to make those changes and IT just doesn’t think there is anything wrong with IT. Although it will openly ADMIT it to me, and has, many times, I see now that was only more gaslighting and love bombing.

Aw, shucks, H2H: “amazing woman”!? 🙂 mwah! xx thanks but I don’t feel I deserve all THAT. I may have to put away something that used to be my best friend. Quite the paradox. Sometimes consuming paradox. But where do you draw the line? For me, I draw the line at personal safety and threats against my life. That is where I draw the line. If it happens once, it will continue happening and I am never going to give up my life for someone who is trying to suck it from me.

I will voluntarily lay down my life or put it at risk but NOBODY takes that or tries to take that away from me because it is MY LIFE and not theirs.

I don’t care if it was him but chances are probably 100% that it was associated with him. It’s always associated with IT somehow. I don’t live my life in drama and chaos. I live a single life; solitary and there is no reason anyone should be butting into my privacy like this other than “IT”. It always has something to do with it.

I can’t WAIT to see if it steps up over the next few days. I would almost be able to set my clock by it. Seriously. I know the patterns. “I” am capable of breaking patterns, IT is not. It can be quite predictable in some ways; other ways – I would trust “IT” about as much as I would a 7ft rattlesnake!

Thanks you guys for your support. We’ll make it through all this. We will. THEY know it too and they resent it. I believe that’s true. Just ‘making it’ through all this makes them jealous because they don’t know or understand where that strength and fortitude comes from. They are small little people, with no soul and no direction – sort of like drowning souls frantically trying to cling to something so they don’t go under. Their ‘ugly’ persona’s come from the frustration of their inability to act and think and feel like we do. They hate anything or anyone that reminds them of how empty their souls truly are. They don’t realize they can change who they are or they do but don’t want to endure the hardship of changing. To them it’s easier to just suck what they can and make it theirs, instead of living their own lives, they are like plankton, attaching themselves to our lives to suck us dry.

It’s alright; I am ready for the 3 month onslaught of harassment. I am ready and stronger and now better able to deal with this – I say: ‘bring it on’! 😉

Dupey Dupedster


Thanks Ox for sharing what you did.
I am happy you are feeling better. I really DO think what we feed our bodies, during this high stress time, is important to consider. I am a poster child for what this can actually DO to your health and well being! 😉 I wish this upon NOBODY and the only way you can keep away from it is by being aware and sometimes forcing yourself to take care of yourself.

I am sorry Ox that things have been so rotten for you.
You have suffered greatly and I never understand why it’s always the good people who have to do the most suffering in this life when it’s them giving out the most good?!!!!


“IN addition to taking care of my nutritional needs, taking care of my emotional needs is as important I think. “Cleaning house” of all the “dirt” (dysfunctional people”) and sweeping them out the door leave my house with enough room for PEACE to move in and stay.” == so agreed: clean house of all the dirt and dysfunctional people!!! AMEN!!!!

I need to get myself on some fish oil!!!

***Hugs Ox***



Dupey – I get all kinds of calls on my cell, wrong number, tele marketeers etc….the guy that had my cell phone number before me was a very well liked man named Skeeter, dang he has alot of friends..I think the phone providers give out new numbers to quickly…maybe your hyper sensitive right now and the calls are not related to him. Just a thought.
For the longest time I thought every vehicle going down my gravel road was him or one of his cronies, everytime the dogs barked I was sure it was him, but it wasnt, it was just my hypervigilant over active paranoia…he has showed up a few times but when you dont answer the door they realize it’s a waste of their time..he has not been around in over a year now,,dont know if he is dead or alive…not knowing anything is better than knowing anything. I mean he has no reason to come back.. I wont let him f–k with my mind…


((hi hens)) That is what I try to tell myself all the time but it isn’t so. This has been a NINE YEAR PATTERN with “IT”. It’s alright; it’s like an ‘early alarm warning system’. 😉

Yes: not knowing anything is better than knowing anything.
FOR SURE: it’s only about drama and torment anyways.

Trust me, hens: no hyper-vigilant paranoia over here! 😉
IT doesn’t scare me anymore. Because I know how weak it truly is. I now know that it isn’t about anything at all, no matter how ugly and violent it can get. It can raise it’s voice all it wants, it is just NOTHING.

Yes, I will keep NOT RESPONDING. THIS is ‘trite’.

Thanks hens for yacking ~ how the wieners? hmmm?


Dupey Dah Dah


Well, in a little while, I am going to be going to another therapy session. First time I have seen this counselor in two weeks!

This is my ‘service related’ counselor and she just listens to all my ruminations for an hour. They are becoming less and less, though. My EMDR therapy is purging all those past/bad/memories and I also do this ‘ruminating cleansing’ once a week with another counselor. I am really very blessed to have two such amazing counselors in addition to sharing with all of you! 😉

I seem to have gained a stronger foothold this week. A stronger ‘grounding’ than I have had in the past five years. This week has been a major step and hurdle for me. I never thought I would get to this place where I can at least make some sense out of MYSELF: forget that stupid spath!!! We can deal with “IT” at a later time….right now, and for quite a while now, I have been trying to deal with MYSELF! Can’t fight a spath off being weak and not feeling well! 😉 You need to be strong for that!

This week was a huge turning point for me and Monday (anniversary of 3 months NO CONTACT) is going to be the HUGEST! If I can get past Monday without anymore interference from “IT”, I will have achieved a milestone for myself personally.

I am doing soooooooooooooooooo much better. I still have a long ways to go with my PTSD and I don’t think it ever really and truly goes away but my therapy is helping me to put it all into a different perspective for me. I still have this deep seated, engrained depression (MDD) and fortunately, with the training I have been getting, it has helped to ‘numb’ those overwhelming emotions – I have been learning how to ‘reprocess’ those ugly memories and shrink them down into something I can actually SEE and deal with. Just a little step at a time.

“IT” was my ‘trigger’. I never want to see it again as long as I live and I never want to hear it’s voice or see it’s ugly, laughing, face. There is no excuse or explanation that will suffice for the horrid things it has done to me and it did them for no reason. THAT is the scarey part. There was no reason for the things IT did to me and to others along the way. No reason other than that monster being what “IT” is. That is unacceptable. The behavior is completely unacceptable.

I do not sleep with lions because I may not awake.
Couple times, I came real close to NOT waking!!!!!!

Take care you guys; do something nice for yourselves today. Just one little thing; wrap it up, put a bow on it, with a note that says: “This is with love from Dupedster”! 😉

Happy day to you all.

Hope to heal

Dupedster~It is a joy to read your post. You are truly a ray of sunshine! Thanks so much for being YOU!

I am so glad that you have gained so much ground on the road to healing. Blessings to you on your continued journey and big (((HUGS))) too!!!




I’m so glad you are feeling better!!! Hooray for you!!!! You deserve it and have come a long way.


Very informative article. I’m glad and read it and will be doing more research at this point.
I believe I suffer from PTSD-never diagnosed (specifically for that) but due to the SEVERE anxiety/panic attacks I suffer I must find and am willing to try anything that sounds reasonable. I use benzos to help. When I was pregnant I suffered from gestational diabetes (common- however diabetes runs in my family). I wouldn’t be surprised if I also had some postpartum depression-who could tell anyway I was such a wreck from the spath. Who knows-I never looked for help from a dr. I don’t know. I was and still am (BUT GETTING BETTER) an emotional mess.
However I know I now need to start with the basics to ensure my mental and emotional health.I am physically a healthy person so far (no medical conditions), with the exception of the anxiety/emotional garbage. I’ve started having terrible acid reflux which brings me to the point of gagging and sometimes vomiting.I can’t do it all at once so I must start with the very basics. I have come up with the following things to do as a starting basis:
1. 45 min per day of some for of cardio.
2. Eat 3 meals per day. There are days I forget to eat anything. I must make this a priority.
3. Take a multiviamin with a vit C. each day with a meal. I will also start with other supplements.(and am open to suggestions for initial starters-I am afraid of shocking my system all at once.
4. QUIT SMOKING!!! I’m seriouse about this one. I do not smoke around my son, in the house or car but when he goes to bed or takes a nap I chain smoke like a chimney. I don’t know whether to use the patch or go cold turkey.PILLS ARE OUT!! (Chantix, wellbutrin, ect.) I must find the correct way of not shocking my system due to anxiety- detoxing must be a gradual process for me. I want this to be a life change..and they do not occur overnight.

I’ve read taking a bath with epson salt and ginger root are a form of releasing toxins. Any other suggestions?

One day step at a time-one day at a time.


(((H2H))) & (((Louise))): Thanks so much for your kind words and overwhelming support. YOU GUYS ROCK! xxoo

Just got back from my counseling appointment and was told I am doing rather well these days. My ‘rumination appointment’ has been reduced to every other week instead of every week, sometimes I was going 2-3 times a week on that one! 😉

Coping: I wish you so well on your quest to start paying more attention to your health! What would your son do without you?! NUMBER ONE IMPORTANCE; RIGHT?

Don’t forget MORE fruit and vegetables instead of meat. 🙂
Include some meditation for yourself. It helps clear the mind and ground the soul. xxoo

You are correct: this is a process, not an event.
It takes extreme determination and constant discipline but we ALL can do this. It takes courage to make these changes in ourselves. Which is something the SPATH will NEVER understand. It is this strength about us that they so hate.

Love ~ DUpey


hi coping!
I asked Diane to write this article because the work that Health Pursuits has done and is doing has helped me enormously. I encouraged diane to sign up on lf so that she could respond to some questions, but it doesn’t seem she has shown up yet. So….i am going to jump in and give the advice she gives me: try things and see if they work for you; and it’s important that your body can handle detox before you detox. in my case that meant many months of supplementing my system so that I could deal with the toxins that would be released via detox. in my case i have been using an infrared sauna. other people use other methods that work for and don’t overtax their systems at that time.

It’s really important that you eat – or your brain will starve. Water and food of good quality are the best places to start. If you are dehydrated then lots of water, but slow sips. If you drink lots of water fast it will flush your kidneys instead of hydrating your cells. It sounds like 3 times a day is a challenge, but i think 3 moderate meals and a couple of snacks would be good. I have whacky blood sugar, and when i started to eat 5 times a day it greatly improved.

about supplements – we all need different amounts of supps at different times. it is very individual. please read the health pursuits website, and email Diane if she doesn’t show up here.

fresh air and exercise – very good. exercise is especially important for managing anxiety. if you can do 45 daily that’s great if you can do less that’s great too. we all have to start where we are.

smoking – i would start with exercise and supps. they will make quitting easier. when i quit i quit cold turkey and i had an number of strategies that helped. i had a buddy who i called when i really really wanted to smoke and we would talk out what i was feeling, and the need to smoke would go away. it sounds like you use cigs the way i did – to damp down my feelings. so try writing or talking about them instead of smoking. i had a deal with myself when i quit overating (another coping mechanism) many years ago – i would read things that helped me stay on track, write it out, talk to someone – and if i still felt the compulsion to eat i would – but i tried all my strategies first.

epson salts are always helpful. they will help you process detox. mixed with baking soda, it’s quite lovely. ginger can be a skin irritant.

anything i recommend is from my own experience. if diane at any time has different or more complete advice, i’d go with hers. she’s the pro.


hens – what the heck is a health nut?


Oxy – I have added extra B5 and P5P to help with the PTSD/ adrenal drain.


1steprs – I eat bacon, eggs and toast with blackberry jam and butter for breakfast….finish that off with a big cup of coffee and a cig…….a health nut eat’s twig’s and fig’s and fyber and runs ten miles and plans on living forever….

Hope to heal

LOL @ Hens ~ I go along with that breakfast… with the exception of the cig. Gave those up 11 years ago next month. 🙂

Twice Betrayed

Well, the adrenal fatigue is me! I feel good for awhile, then have a reaction to something…mostly never knowing what. I cannot eat homemade chicken soup broth as it pumps my immune system and I have a reaction. I mean, any little thing can set me off. I have found eating grass fed red meat really helps me and most likely it’s the B vitamins in it. But, I’m not well and I would like to come on over the hump. I’m super sensitive to supplements now and I used to take Vitamin C, AdvaCal [great calcium/mag bone building supplement], whole food multivitamin, and Primal Defense. I cannot take ANYTHING now w/o a major reaction. I cannot do much salt causes me to retain water and my inner ear gets out of whack and I get dizzy. My BP is 110/65 which I am told is the high end of the low scale. I am chemically sensitive, Celiac and dairy intolerant and the rest of the junk. Going to the website now, thanks for posting!

Oxy: you raise and process your own red meat! GOOD for you, keeping that healthy going!



I love that breakfast! 🙂 Oh, yeah, minus the cigarette and coffee…mine would be tea.


I’m glad therapy is going well. Your kindness always seems genuine despite all of your intense pain. Keep strong! You are doing great!!! I do wish I could send you a pic of the magnet… It’s a guy and a girl in beautiful meadow with him bending down on one knee trying to hand her flowers and the caption above reads “better to have loved and lost than to live with the psycho the rest of your life”. So perfect. Maybe I could try and send it to Donna to forward on. It’s cute and so very appropriate. :).
One joy,
Thank you for the great info. Seriously!!! I will check out the website.. I
want to and need to try alternative methods. Trust me.. I’m down for the process.
Very funny. Lol.. Nope we will never live forever but IDE like to live at leaste as opposed to trying to survive. Bacon and eggs sounds good. Enjoy. 🙂
(((hugs to all)))


One joy- I’ll check out the site.. Very informative. I might be asking a little more once a gain a little more info on the subject. Thx.


haha hens – well, then they are delusional as spaths! NO ONE gets out alive!


TB – so glad you came today and read Diane’s article. I know you really want to find some things that work for you. Go for it! Diane is an awesome resource. When people are serious about getting well she goes the extra mile.


hens – you quit that smoking shit, it will kill you! 🙂


on second thought send your smokes to the spath. :mrgreen:


IDE also like to add one last thing to this subject.. Something I think is important.. At leaste for me.
We cannot do it all at once. Detoxing either for physical or emotional needs cannot be done overnight. We cannot deal with the spath, remove toxic people, understand ourselves, torment ourselves over the why’s, know our personal boundaries as they now exist, and deal with the day to day neccessities of life. It is a process.. We should be kind, patient, and loving to ourselves. That is our right… Lol.. Boy it’s a bitch! 🙂 but we DESERVE it!!


Coping – I second that emotion! Patience is so hard to cultivate sometimes. When there is so much to deal with, and so many possible disasters, it is absolutely necessary.

I have never been as challenged as I am now. I don’t know how this will all go – if i will ever be well or if I will ever be a person who can cope with anxiety again. Some days i get knocked over or don’t do well …so cultivating compassion for ourselves is really important too.

patience and compassion – the same things the damn spath exploited, used up and that I have shut down to a great degree.

time to open up again – if to no one but myself. especially to myself.


One joy-
I’ve never never truly known self- love. I was not brought up that way. It was considered selfish and when voicing an opinion there were severe punishments. As a young adult I blindly gave (emotionally) to everyone and anyone. It’s only now after the spath that I am beginning to accept or rather explore the concept of self love. My rights, my voice, my beliefs, make me who I am. Sometimes I feel lost in the anxiety, the fear, the pain and all that garbage. It’s so very hard.
Self-love is good! Perhaps once that is acquired the anxiety will lesson.
This is what I hope for.

Twice Betrayed

one/joy: Thank you!


1steprs – I know I know, I am a degenerate closet smoker, I dont smoke around other peeps that dont smoke, I can go out to dinner and a movie without smoking….my grandpa could roll a cig and strike a match with one hand, he died at 98..if he hadnt smoked he would of lived forever I guess.


I wish you all peace…….and healing and strength to find the way.


Dear Coping – what is the saying? Life is a journey not a destination? At least we have some new rules to go by now, rules that protect us from user’s and abuser’s. Some wounded people never get the opportunity to see the light – so to speak. I doubt I will ever be able to undo all the childhood trauma, but at least I can see it for what it was… now that I know I was a victim I cant remain a victim.. the quality of my tomorrows depend on me…..


Lol.. Hmm I like that. ” hi my name is hens and I’m a degenerate closet smoker”. Get it out woman!! Lol. 🙂


I like that. “tomorrow depends on me” !


oh my – rut row – who’s gonna tell her?


YOU tell her Hens!!

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