Don’t Punish Pain Rally in your state, SOON

When I was in Kindergarten, there was a kid, Ben, who was always getting into trouble. The teacher would always punish the whole class for his behavior. Finally, one day, we had been forced to put our heads down and turn out the lights, and I started crying.

“What’s wrong, Kristie?”

*sniff* “I didn’t do anything wrong.” *wipes eyes*

“…” *Shuffles feet*

She wasn’t sure what to do. Finally, she told me that I could put my head up. I looked around and wondered why no one else said anything. Were they okay with taking the blame for Ben’s horrible behavior? That certainly wasn’t fair of the teacher to punish us for Ben!

So, why are doctors punishing their patients for the behavior of drug addicts?

Well… Our current president called for a war on opioids. The CDC answered with guidelines for prescribing. The FBI took up the torch and decided to punish doctors for over-prescribing. Most doctors don’t over-prescribe, but they were very afraid to be labeled as such. So they started reducing their patients’ doses and not treating new pain at all. After exhausting all other options, patients demanded strong meds. Doctors told patients they’d have to go to a pain specialist for stronger meds. Pain specialists popped up everywhere as people in pain scrambled to find help.

In comes the media. The media jumped onto the bandwagon because it would make great headlines. They broadcasted made-up statistics and outright lies, and then another media organization picked it up and changed their lies to be even worse. On and on it went until people were, and are, worked up into a complete frenzy.

Not only are the ill-informed public in a frenzy, shaking their fists at doctors for treating pain (as they were called to do in the 90s and 00s. Remember the faces and the number scale? That was from guidelines for treating pain, and new in the 90s), but now people in pain are panicked because we are losing our right to live life. We’ll be stuck in bed and house-bound without strong pain medicine. It’s just downright CRUEL to deny us medical care.

Don’t Punish Pain!!

Don’t punish patients in severe pain because 15% of patients abuse their meds. The rest of us are responsible and never abuse them. We take them as prescribed, and have been for many years. It’s the only way we can function in society and not remain house- or bed-bound. Don’t punish me for having a spinal tumor, Arachnoiditis, Fibromyalgia, Interstitial Cystitis, PCOS, Endometriosis, Fibroids, Neuropathy, and Migraines. I did not choose to have this crappy body. Addicts choose to take too much of a drug. I choose to play by the rules.

Don’t Punish Pain!!

paincry

Advertisements

Asking for a favor…

Friends, How (not) to Grieve isn’t selling the way I’d like, so I’m here to ask for help. Reviews sell the book, so if you have bought the book (or if you would buy it) or have read it on Kindle Unlimited, could I please trouble you for a review? If you’re not good at writing reviews, I can help you with it if you want, without writing it, of course. Possible customers who read reviews are looking for something in the story that will evoke emotion: happy, sad, exciting, whatever. They’re also looking for the “verified purchase” symbol, so if you haven’t bought the book, it doesn’t do any good to write the review, though I would appreciate the effort. The Kindle version is only $3 (less than a cup of coffee) and you can read it on your computer, phone, tablet, or Kindle. It’s “free” with a Kindle Unlimited membership. Remember to scroll all the way to the end before closing the book so the author gets credit for every page. Thank you so much for supporting me!

tumblr_l0pv5upx8P1qb0wfxo1_500

Reviews, anyone?

Wanted: Reviewers for “How (not) to Grieve,” book four in my Backstretch series. Each book is mainly set on or around horse racing tracks, and is about the people who live and work on the backstretch. I’ve always wanted to be someone strong enough and physically able enough to work with race horses, but I could never do it with my health issues. Instead, the next best thing is to write about life at a race track.

If you or someone you know works at a race track and might be interested in reading my books, even if only to see if the writer got it right, head over to Amazon. By the same token, if you love horses and/or historical fiction, you might like this book. AND it’s got a paranormal twist to it. Better yet: it’s only $2.99! Three bucks. You spend more than that on a cup of coffee, and for me to work years on something and only charge three dollars is crazy! 😉

“Grieve” and the other books in the series are all available on Kindle, Kindle Unlimited, and in paperback.

See the next blog post for more info.

How (not) to Grieve

Available now on Amazon!

How (not) to Grieve

How (not) to Grieve

Available now on Amazon!

“How (not) to Grieve,” book four in my Backstretch series, has been published as of August 6, 2018. It is available on Kindle and in paperback on Amazon.

Please, don’t forget to leave a review once you’ve read it or any of my books. As always, I am eternally grateful. 🙂

Book 1: Chivalry

Book 2: Wounds into Wisdom

Book 3: Turn of the Tide

Book 4: How (not) to Grieve

Book 5: Clear Blue Sky (available in 2019)

Mental Health Day

We all need mental health days. Some need more than others. For some, it’s become so bad that they cannot work. Depression, Bipolar, Mania, Schizophrenia, etc… Whatever the issue is, there is some form of help for it from doctors and on the internet. If you’re not in a good place, move from there. Keep trying. And keep reading.

My books deal with several mental health issues. Candy and Rachel, in books 1-3, each have life altering events happen to them, and as a result, they wind up with Depression (Candy) and PTSD (Rachel).  In Wounds into Wisdom, Candy’s depression may not be obvious to readers, especially at first. She can be silly and mischievous at times, but later, when she finds herself stuck in an abusive relationship, you can really see it. After all, she grew up neglected and mistreated, so, to her, that’s what she’s comfortable with, it’s what she’s used to. In the next book, Turn of the Tide, Candy is dealing with the after-effects of Demitri’s abuse, and it’s extremely hard on her. Her mind is telling her she’s not worth it or she doesn’t deserve to be happy. It takes her a long time to realize that she does deserve to be with someone good, but even then, in the end of the book, she is still not cured. True Depression (not sadness) can’t be prayed away, yoga-d away, wished away, or anything. What Candy needs is medication and support from family and friends.

Speaking from experience, I went way too long without medication and wish I had given in and mentioned it to my doctor sooner. That’s all it took – mentioning it. Our conversation was very short, maybe a few questions long, and I had a prescription for Wellbutrin XL in my hand. She said we’d try different things because different meds work for different people. I was lucky, though, because Wellbutrin XL worked very well for me. I still take it every day, thirteen years later. If I don’t take it (such as when I’m in the hospital after a surgery and they don’t give me my regular meds) I can definitely tell a difference. By day three I’m in that crying-for-no-reason mode that I hate so much. Then I ask for the pill and I’m fine. Depression cannot usually be fixed without medication since the brain chemistry is out of whack.

What else helps? Journaling, writing, Facebook groups, other online groups.

I also write books where the characters deal with issues that I’ve been through. The issues are always worse in the books; I don’t want anybody to think I’m claiming to have  been kidnapped or in a physically abusive relationship. Fortunately, I’ve been able to stop those things from happening before they happen. I write fiction, so, you know…entertainment.

Back to discussing journaling, in Chivalry, Rachel has severe PTSD from her kidnapping, and Erick and her psychologist try to help her by having her write down her story. She’ll read it aloud again and again, maybe write out the whole thing again, read it again, etc, to desensitize her. The more she looks at/faces that story, the less severe it gets each time. I did some research on PTSD while writing Chivalry, and I read that this technique was used on war vets after the Vietnam War and wars after that. It has been a useful technique since then, and is still used today. Just today, I read someone’s post proclaiming their success due to journaling and reading their story, repeatedly. It does take time, but it does work.

Disclaimer: I don’t pretend to know everything about PTSD or Depression, though I have experienced them myself, and I do know that the above techniques and tools mentioned are not the only tools to use. I’m not a doctor, I just play one on…er…I write about them. Do your own research, get a doctor, do what they say to do, and if it doesn’t work, try something else. You just keep trying, like Rachel tells Candy, and like Dory says:

just-keep-swimming-meme

 

We have a winner!

Congratulations to winner, Cecilia Rodriguez for winning the huge tote bag full of goodies!! As soon as she returns my email, I’ll send it out to her. If she does not respond within 3 days, I’ll select another winner. But I’m sure she wouldn’t want to pass this up! Talk about an awesome prize!

__________________________________________________________________________________________

If you’re a business owner, author, artist, whatever, and you’d like to participate in another giveaway sometime, drop me a note and I’ll let you know when we do this again. The participants in the giveaway experienced an increase in Facebook page likes and group member increases. You’ll have a choice as to what you’d like people to do to earn their entry: like your Facebook page, join your group, visit your website (maybe have them find something and say where they found it, or use another way to prove they visited), tweet something, post a photo on Instagram, whatever you want. Drop me a note at kristie@kristiehigginsauthor.com and I’ll save your name for the next giveaway. I use Rafflecopter for giveaways at this point.