Chronic Pain Support Groups

I am in several online support groups for Trigeminal Neuralgia and Occipital and Glossopharyngeal Neuralgia. I have learned so much about these conditions, what gives relief, and what procedures have been successful for others because I joined five years ago.

When my brain surgery was scheduled, I logged into the Trigeminal Neuralgia group and asked two questions: Have you had this surgery and what was your recovery like?

That’s it.

Question one would have a yes or no response and question two would be specific to the individual’s recovery.

I was surprised that the first few answers were from those who had not had the surgery. They told me, “DON’T DO IT! GET A SECOND OPINION!!!”

This was my second opinion. Then they began to talk back and forth to each other supporting their decisions not to have surgery. They seemed to forget my original two questions.

I thought about how their advice did not have merit to me. How could they talk about what the recovery was like if they never had the surgery? Did their personal agendas become more important than the reason for the group? You know, support.

My brain does not work as fast as it used to because of the sedating medication I take four times a day. I thought about how many times in my own past if I had just read a post again and taken a pause, I could have been more helpful. It is when I responded from only my own agenda that I should have remained quiet.

These groups assisted me tremendously especially when I didn’t know anything about my diagnosis. This one simple post and response has helped me to be more clear, concise and supportive in support groups. I thanked them for taking their time and let them know I would be moving forward with surgery.

It feels great not to take these things personally

Yay to more clarity within our highly sedated brains and bodies.


Gail Sinclair, MHt, CNC is a hypnotherapist who helps those living with chronic pain go from discomfort to thriving by using hypnosis, pain management tools and resources.

She is a Master Hypnotherapist, Nutritional Consultant, and a Reiki Master Teacher. She has over 20 years in healing work and is an international award-winning speaker.

Gail lives in Portland, OR with her delightful husband, son, and cat. She can be found cooking, knitting, writing, and figuring out new ways to thrive with Trigeminal, and Occipital Neuralgia.

You can reach her at

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