Female Hysteria – Aids that Every Woman Appreciates

Hysteria

Engrossed with hysteria I walked into my councilling session today. I traveled emotionally; climbing mountains reaching the peak only to leap off descending to the valley below. How is it possible for a person to cry, leave their body, and smile within a five minute time frame, all the while not knowing how she traveled from one emotional state to another.

I’m OK. It feels odd to actually state “I’m OK.” I neither understand nor remember the triggers of such outbursts. They come unbidden, uncontrolled and inadvertently end, leaving me to digest the days progression.

My councilor is a beautiful, wise and generous person. She knows my secrets. Are they secrets though? For her yes, I would say indeed they are secrets kept in confidence. For me, shedding secrets strengthens my being. I don’t need to hide. When I hide who I am I fill with fear which leads to anxiety which turns into the inability to make decisions leading to eventual hysteria. That word hysteria I looked up in the wiki simply because I have been feeling hysterical lately. They state:

Hysteria is a diagnostic label applied to a state of mind, one of unmanageable fear or emotional excesses. The fear is often centered on a body part, most often on an imagined problem with that body part (disease is a common complaint). People who are “hysterical” often lose self-control due to the overwhelming fear.

Damn they are good! And Damn I’m good for picking the proper word this evening to describe my consciousness. To take it a step farther I then looked up female hysteria. Having known some background on the subject through reading and discussion with others I believe that Damn, it is all too real today, for perhaps many women in some shape or form. Without release through orgasm everything just builds and builds and builds and then you are essentially a hysterical woman. What would you know that in the earlier part of the century Doctors were rubbing the clitoris of women sometimes for hours to bring on an orgasm, in effect relieving the Hysteria. This practice was a sanctioned medical procedure which lead to the popular invention of the electric vibrator. To my surprise the Sears, Roebuck and Company catalog from 1918 features a whole page devoted to:

sears robuck - aids that every woman appreciates - public domain image

As the years progressed Female Hysteria vanished as a medical diagnosis.

Today different manifestations of hysteria are recognized amongst other things, schizophrenia, conversion disorder and anxiety attacks.

Note the term anxiety attacks. That one hit home. Today I spoke with my councilor about the lack of sex in my relationship with my boyfriend. She mentioned that sex is actually a good way to relieve anxiety and depression. I thought on this and tucked it away in the back of my head ’til later this evening after Eric went to bed. Low and behold that theory holds true! One always hears about how men masturbate once or more times a day; women, you know, could benefit from this practice too!

Side note: Today my talk with my councilor wasn’t just about sex. Sex was all but a small part of it. Sexuality and the need to be able to express desire and pleasure freely has been difficult for me since I sobered up 10 months ago. Tonight, for the first time in a long time I felt secure in expressing these thoughts and ideas that I have been repressing. There is no shame in writing and/or expressing your femininity openly. Thank you Councilor A. I welcome feedback and discussion on this. Cheers!

Image credits
1. Hysteria – Jessica Doyle – 2006 – Ink on Paper
2. Aids That Every Woman Appreciates – Sears, Roebuck and Company catalog, 1918 – This image is Public Domain

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7 thoughts on “Female Hysteria – Aids that Every Woman Appreciates

  1. Great work Jessica, I really enjoy reading the entries on your page and wish to congatulate you on being featured on the blogherald.com.
    I enjoy the opportunity to jump into the mind of Jessica Doyle and find it refreshing to be able to relate to alot of her subject matter. Being a recovering addict I realize how hard it can be to understand oneself and I admire her ability to express herself accurately and be so open about her feelings. What an inspiration!

  2. One of the only things I remember researching in University: turns out that hysteria actually comes from the Greek word hyster, which means uterus.

    Jessica, you and I are very similar. I am under the care of the outpatient program at St. Paul’s and am about to enter Daytox. Would welcome the opportunity to speak with you about it. MSN is same as email: aurelie23@hotmail.com

    I hope this message finds you well.

  3. I will get in touch with you Aurelie :) I did not know that hyster meant uterus. Wow. I enjoy finding out the origin of where our words come from. I wish you the best with Daytox.

  4. Please do. I look forward to hearing from you and perhaps sharing in your bravery.

  5. This is so fantastic. Takes me back to college when we discussed women getting the vapors and so forth. What a passionate image!!

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