Shy Bladder Syndrome is the classic “mind-over-body” disorder. Paruretics experience the physical problems of a condition that originates in the mind which is the very definition of a psychogenic disorder. As you well know, the mind is an extremely powerful instrument that we only have partial control over. Guiding the ‘conscious mind’ is within our reach, however the ‘unconscious mind’ proves to be a far trickier phenomena to even understand; let alone control.
It’s no wonder GP success rates in treating Paruresis are considerably low; they’re trained to treat the physical not the mental. Visiting your GP is very important to ensure your inability to urinate isn’t caused by medical reasons, however it would be quite foolish to expect a GP to be able to treat a condition outside the realm of their capabilities. One does not visit a butcher for bread and a baker for meat. If you want help with a physical condition you visit a GP, if you want help with a psychological condition you visit someone trained in that area. This is why hypnotherapy has such high success rates in treating Shy Bladder Syndrome; it re-trains the ‘unconscious mind’.
I’m going to take the example of one of my previous clients to explain how the ‘unconscious mind’ runs the rule over the bladder. For the sake of privacy, we’ll call him John. See if you can relate…
John is 34 years old and has suffered from Shy Bladder Syndrome for as long as he can remember. He recalls an event that occurred during his early teens at school as the cause of his condition. His attempts to urinate at a public urinal were hampered by several older boys entering the area and teasing him. John literally froze up. From then on he was just unable to ‘go’, no matter how much he told himself to relax and stay calm.
I’m extremely proud that I was able to help John overcome his condition, but let’s look at the process that occurred in John’s mind and body in more detail:
It’s crucial to understand the 2 forces that direct human behaviour. We attempt to pursue pleasure and avoid pain. When the older boys started to tease John, his ‘unconscious mind’ responded to the sensory information from the external environment and perceived what he saw, heard, smelt (and any other senses that were called into action) as painful. From then on, whenever John entered an environment that his senses recognised were similar, he perceived it as painful. His brain therefore interpreted the situation as one that is not safe and that should be avoided. As a result, his ‘unconscious mind’ overrode any messages of encouragement to relax and stay calm he passed to his ‘conscious mind’. Shy Bladder Syndrome is effectively a protection mechanism employed by the ‘unconscious mind’ to make sure you avoid painful scenarios. On one hand we can be thankful that it’s looking out for us, even when we aren’t aware of it. However, on the other hand, it shows how easily it picks up unwanted routines and how hard it is to break them.
Shy Bladder Syndrome is a condition that you learned. It’s your minds way of avoiding pain.
Urinating in public can also be learned. The key – link pleasure to it.