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Psychophysical Reaction

This used to be called a "psycho-somatic" or "somatoform" reaction, but because normal people were starting to catch onto the diagnosis, they had to change the name.

Basically -- it means there is absolutely nothing wrong with you! That's right -- it's all in your head! However, since you're a hypochondriac, you knew that already.

Examples might be getting a stomach ache on the anniversary of your father's death from cancer, or having chest pain after your husband's heart attack, or suddenly getting a sore throat during a government audit. Psychiatrists will tell you that this is a subconscious attempt to reconcile an emotional conflict through a physical symptom, but most of your friends, realties and government auditors will just assume you've been faking all along.

This diagnosis has a tricky Catch-22 side to it, since if you absolutely refuse the believe the diagnosis then it is probably correct. Also - the more treatment and tests you have, the worse the symptoms get! Physicians are taught never to confront the patient about psychiatric issues, so you can suffer cluelessly for years without ever getting close to the real explanation of what is wrong with you.

The usual course is to exhaust your financial resources trying to get a medical diagnosis, and then recover completely once you have lost your job and begun the comparatively stress-free lifestyle of a homeless person. Then it will be time for a new psychiatric diagnosis -- acute depression!

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