9. Alternative practitioners 2

9. Alternative practitioners 2

4 March 2024

I do not hold with the division between allopathic medicine and the rest. Anyone I consult is an equal partner attempting to solve a mystery: how the human body/mind functions or not.

Allopathic medicine is an expression commonly used by homeopaths to describe the use of pharmacology or physical interventions to treat or suppress symptoms. Samuel Hahnemann coined it in 1810 and it is still used to refer to Western medicine, or evidence-based medicine. But any treatment can be evidence-based.

Indeed, all medicine is an attempt to heal or alleviate and is also a matter of fashion. (Everything is, but that is another story). Allopathic medicine protects itself by keeping alternatives out of the mainstream, which means alternatives have access to only a small proportion of the population – those who can pay. A larger cross-section of society would teach them more.

Just as all allopathic and alternative practitioners are different, they all share the fact that they have had very little head pain training. And with both, I normally know, or fancy I know, whether they are mired in their own small pool of delusions as soon as I meet them. If they are, I invariably end up treating them. They give nothing and take a great deal. This is not necessarily just the flakier end of the spectrum.

The homeopath below had just been to listen to the Dalai Lama and was so full of him, he seemed to be in the room. She wanted to know what I thought. While I have nothing against him personally, I also know I would love to be wise for a living and nothing else. This career path has never been an option for me and females generally worldwide. Of course, I like his levity, but I have never made gods of men and was not about to start.

I quickly grasped that she was not as cerebral as I would have liked, as she thought migraine was not a mystery but one big tantrum. Or at least the result of suppressed rage. Of course, she didn’t have to say it in words. That would have been gross.

The Homeopath

What about your anger, she said
Clipboard angled, Biro poised
What makes you angry?

Jeez- I thought – that would need years
Rational or irrational rage I say
I like even saying rage –
Buying time.

Irrational she supposed, thrown.
The rational tap I could never stop
But irrational – I was silent.

The former is essential
The latter a habit …
I did not say

What about your dreams then?
Ah …

However, I took her trace elements and followed her dicta, but felt as though I was licking an inferno. But I did not think she was in any way representative of her profession. I did have to give her a light-hearted talk about creating idols. I like all practitioners to be professional. And to idol worship in their own time.

While she was a waste of my journey to the mainland, a trigger in itself, others have held me in their thrall for longer and I have travelled further. Not so the hypnotherapist. It was not just his 1970s hippy get-up or his soft-spokenness, but also his readiness to read me other people’s poetry, thereby making himself appear supersensitive, a trait I can take or leave in anyone, let alone a healer. If they want to do some shamanistic ritual and suggest I eat penises I am more likely to respond.

So, I lay there on a hard couch in a tiny room, which violated my personal boundaries, in an alternative healing centre (bad name), as he set about attempting to reprogramme my brain. I was never going to go under in such an ugly joint. And in my defence, I have willingly regressed on command and imagined myself at four years old abandoned in an empty house. That is easy and I enjoy it in a perverse way. But this was not going to happen, so I fed him my ludicrous pretence and a few comforting words. I wasn’t lying, but oiling the alternative wheels, knowing I was never going to see him again.

I gave osteopathy a few goes and while I enjoyed the experiences, except for one which was scary, I suspected that while I was getting frequent, violent attacks, a few neck wrenches were not going to do it. Osteopaths can be unpredictable and, while most are not, it is not always possible to tell the difference.

One emitted clouds of body odour and strange unconscious vocalising which rattled about in my brain for days.

One of my best and most positive experiences was with a chiropractor who came highly recommended from a dentist who had also come highly recommended. That’s always a start.

I trailed all the way to Ayr on a regular basis feeling she was going to be the one.

By now you will have realised that this is a very time-consuming condition, even apart from the time spent in darkened rooms, contemplating my lot.

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash


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