“On a scale of 1-10 how bad is your pain?”

Today I had so much pain where my adhesions are that I was convinced that I was either gonna have an alien burst from my belly button or I’m just gonna die. 15 hours later and I still feel that way.
If it’s the alien please ensure it is loved, named Stanley and raised with my dogs by Harry.  However in the case that it’s just death coming for me, I’m leaving clues for police pointing to Harry and a note in my pocket saying “Harry did it” so that he is arrested. You know, so he can’t marry anyone else! (I jest of course…*Awkward laughter*)

All joking aside, the pain is at a level where I have considered going to hospital numerous times today. This is how I now score my pain. I now have a fear of hospitals and hate going so much that unless I have to go, and I mean HAVE to go. Like I am sent by a doctor or feeling like something could be seriously wrong; sweating for no reason, heart rate at 130BPM or more, pain that is unbearable or cannot be controlled or powered through.
I am a person who on a daily basis has pain that cannot be reduced by strong drugs, but I power through and try and have a life. My quality of life is already poor, however if I didn’t power through the quality of life would be even worse. It is that fact alone that gets me through a lot of the pain.

I am not trying to make myself sound better than others, but I believe that I have a high pain threshold and that I deal with pain well. I have even been told by Drs and Nurses that this is true. I also believe that if other people had a fraction of the pain that I have on a “good day” they would be in a ball screaming and crying and in hospital begging for the strong stuff. I really don’t mean to sound arrogant or belittling to other people’s pain, but I also wish people understood exactly what I, and millions of other people like myself, deal with on a daily basis – without answers or relief.

This leads me on to what the title links to. When you see a dr and they ask you to score your pain out of 10. This scale isn’t representative to everyone, because I am a firm believer that after everything that I have been through that my 3’s, 4’s and 5’s are other people 8’s or 9’s… even some people’s 10. This is not a fair scale. Because when asked I am basing my answers based on how I feel based on what I have experienced in the past. This means that drs do not always take me seriously. They hear me saying those low or average numbers and they do not see me as being in pain or in need or attention, or even worse as an attention seeker.
So does this mean that I either have to explain myself constantly and give the dr an arrogant little speech before hand, about “Everyone’s pain is relative to who they are and how well they deal with pain etc” before saying “Well, for me I’m at a *insert number* when that is normal people’s *insert number*” because if you do this the dr instantly thinks of you as a pain in their ass or a douchebag and it can influence their attitude towards you.
Or should I lie…? Yes I see it as lying. Should I constantly say that I am at a 10, because that is what I believe ‘normal’ people would say if they had this pain and were asked? But then, that leaves me nowhere to go. If I go in at a ’10’ and then I get worse and the pain increases and I feel worse, I am left looking like a hypochondriac, or that I am making a scene, or again that they aren’t taking me seriously? It seems like a lose/lose to me. This is one of the things that I cannot come to terms with. This doesn’t sit well with me. I wish there was a way to come up with a scale that is relevant to people with chronic illness, or people with a higher pain threshold, or whatever.

If anyone has any advice on what to do about this I would love to hear from you.

I am off to take another dose of morphine and hopefully sleep, but we all know how unlikely that is.
Tomorrow, I promise, if I carry on feeling like this, I will stay in bed or if it gets worse, I will go to hospital. It is that bad.

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