Posted - 05/20/2012 : 08:10:54
| THE "RECOVERY LANGUAGE"
The combined effects of symptomatic idiom and temperamental lingo are checkmated if the patient is made to use the physician's language only. The members of the Association call it proudly the "Recovery language." The most important parts
of its vocabulary are the words: "sabotage" and "authority." The authority of the physician is sabotaged if the patient presumes to make a diagnostic, therapeutic or prognostic statement. The verbiage of the temperamental lingo ("unbearable," "intolerable," "uncontrollable") constitutes sabotage because of the assumption that the condition is of a serious nature which is a diagnosis; or, that it is difficult to repair, which is a prognosis. It is a crass example of sabotage if the claim is advanced that, "my headache is there the very minute I wake up. I didn't have time to think about it. It came before I even had a chance to become emotional. How can that be nervous?" A statement of this kind throws a serious doubt on the validity of the physician's diagnosis and sabotages his authority. Likewise, it is a case of self-diagnosing and consequently sabotage to view palpitations as a sign of a heart ailment, of head pressure as meaning brain tumor, of sustained fatigue as leading to physical exhaustion. Once the physician has made the diagnosis of a psychoneurotic or post psychotic condition the patient is no longer permitted to indulge in the pastime of self-diagnosing. If he does he is practicing sabotage. Patients are expected to lose their major symptoms after two months of Recovery membership and class attendance. If after the two month period the handicap persists in its original intensity the indication is that sabotage is still in action. The patient still listens to the suggestions of the symptomatic idiom fearing impending collapse and permanent handicap. Or, he gives ear to the verbal vagaries of the temperamental lingo, feeling helpless in the face of suffering. Clinging to his own mode of thinking he sabotages the physician's effort. Contrary to expectation, it is comforting to the patient to be called a saboteur. Considering himself as such he knows that he has "not yet" learned to avoid resisting the physician. The "not yet" is reassuring. It suggests that in time he will learn. The patients encourage one another to wait until they get well. They warn one another against impatience. The most effective slogan handed down from veteran to novice is, "Wait till you
will learn to give up sabotaging."
THE "SPOTTING TECHNIQUE"
If the patient is to check his sabotaging propensities he must be trained to "spot" the inconsistencies and fallacies of his own language whether it is merely conceived in silent thought or given formulation in vocal speech. To this end, a system of "spotting techniques" was evolved by means of which the members learn to reject the suggestions of the symptomatic idiom and the temperamental lingo whenever a symptom or a temperamental reaction occur. An extensive though necessarily incomplete description of the spotting techniques is furnished in part 3 of this book.