This is the final entry of a three part series (part one | part two) that I have written regarding the stigma that we as people living pain face daily. I have lived with pain for nearly half of my lifetime. I would love to be able to say that things have changed for the better but they haven’t. When my journey with pain started over 20 years ago, the same issues that I ran into then are still happening today. In fact I think it is fair to say that things have gotten worse.
Today, the media primarily writes inaccurate articles quoting self-proclaimed “professional experts”. If someone wishes to talk to an expert, why aren’t you talking to me–someone who has actually lived a life of pain? Why aren’t you listening to someone who has watched adequate pain care get harder and harder to find? I am like so many of you out there who have lived their life with pain and all its hardships.
The media needs to stop listening to only those who focus on the war on drugs as a means to promote their personal agenda and political influence. A solid journalist is supposed to listen to all sides, be neutral and attempt to seek truth to better inform the public rather than spread “gossip” and marginalize vulnerable populations.
I have emphasized in the previous blogs that in order for the stigma to be eradicated people have to be willing to speak up. We must be heard. It is essential that each of use begin by commenting back to the media who are spreading poorly researched propaganda in articles. We must shut down the so-called “experts” who talk out of both sides of their mouth. You know the ones. They claim that they are concerned for people living with pain. They profess that the new rules, regulations and laws they propose or enact will not affect access to care by “legitimate pain patients”. This is all smoke and mirrors as they aren’t concerned about our welfare—not when they continue to spew their venom of misinformation and unsubstantiated claims as they herald themselves as society’s heroes. They are spreading untrue information to scare people in to believing their propaganda that they spout as truth. They are piling on the hurt on those of us already in the throes of pain. What is that saying, ah yes, “kicking the dog when it’s down” come to mind.
We must get up and fight back. Won’t you help me stop this madness? Help me:
- Protest the publishing of biased articles and stop the flow of poorly researched and unbalanced articles.
- Make sure the voices of people living with pain are heard loud and clear by stepping up to stop others who are working to make it look like people living with pain are the reason for drug abuse in this country.
- Tell this truth: People living with pain who take pain medications prescribed for them, do so as one part of their pain management plan. We are not the bad guys.
- Share what no one seems to be willing to say: Those who choose to abuse prescription medications have made a different life choice from the rest, the majority, of us.
- By acting–answer this call to speak up! Do not let fear hold you back—let that fear help move you forward. Be committed to help all people living with pain. This includes YOU!
We need each other, we need to stand tall and firm. If we don’t do it, who will? If we don’t do it and do it now, receiving adequate and timely pain management will only get worse. If the untrue, biased, unsubstantiated claims are not stopped, there will be little to no pain management in this country for anyone.
Will you help me stop this ever-present discrimination against people living with pain? Let me hear your voices loud and clear. Respond to this blog. Help me fight to take back the right to pain management for all. We have far too much to lose if we continue to do nothing.