Talk:Psychological pain

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Terribly biased article[edit]

It's obvious that in the introduction the author is cherry picking sources to support the claim that all psychological pain is essentially the same and based on negative appraisals. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:42, 27 February 2013 (UTC)

Psychological lawsuits[edit]

I took this next passage out. As you learn in a first-year law school class on torts, lawsuits for "purely psychological" pain are far from being a "recent" development. They go back to Robin Hood's England and people recovering damages for being threatened with hatchets in 1315 AD. ... . (talk) 23:27, 26 February 2011 (UTC)

In recent years there has been some prominence to quite controversial lawsuits in which the plaintiff seeks redress for pain and suffering that are not physical at all but purely psychological.[citation needed]

Removed text[edit]

I removed the following text as per the No Original Research policy. If anyone can cite sources for these claims, feel free to add them back in:

Few people perceive that human cruelty across the ages, originates from a misdirected effort to end psychological pain. It has become the hallmark of a human to project our inner pain onto another and then seek to destroy that other. The biblical "beam in thine own eye" is a clue that is critical to understanding the nature & effect of psychological pain.

The temporary relief of psychological pain, today, is used to sell anything from cigarettes to movies. How could Anakin Skywalker become Darth Vader without the increase of his psychological pain? It allows us projection.

People will pay money in order to be able to project their psychological pain unto a fictional character, metaphor or drug induced state, even if it is only temporary relief. This is because the nature of psychological pain is entwined with our human tendency towards addiction.

Colin McMillen 09:57, 22 August 2005 (UTC)

I removed the following text because it is too confusing to be useful, IMO. It could be reintroduced if someone bothers to clarify what it means.

Psychological pain is often considered distinct and separate from emotional pain, which is 'heartache', or heart break, due to a true or perceived loss. In his book The Fisher King and the Handless Maiden, Jungian analyst and author Robert A. Johnson describes psychological pain as "the wounded feeling function in masculine and feminine psychology". In the synopsis of The Fisher King and the Handless Maiden, pain from psychological wounds is reasoned to be the cause of our collective inability to find joy, worth and meaning in life.

  • Johnson, Robert A. "The Fisher King and the Handless Maiden: Understanding the Wounded Feeling Function in Masculine and Feminine Psychology" [1]

--Robert Daoust (talk) 15:29, 7 September 2008 (UTC)

I think that the changes that Rameyer13 made were very useful, but I also think that the text was very confusing, making Robert Daoust edits very helpful, even though it takes away alot of information. --Jamccammond (talk) 04:23, 10 October 2011 (UTC)

Rameyer13 gave this article a little more different information that it needed. He limited the information, but the readers still get the vibe of what the article is covering.--Smanion0623 (talk) 21:21, 10 October 2011 (UTC)

New contribution[edit]

With psychological pain being the topic of my dissertation study and having read quite a bit of the scientific literature on the topic, I feel that I can make extensive contributions to this page. Would you guys who are involved in editing this page prefer me to post my contributions on this talk page first, or is there another way that people can review my contributions before updating the original article? Esther Meerwijk (talk) 22:25, 25 July 2012 (UTC)

Be bold and directly edit the article, or then you may create a temporary subpage at (see --Robert Daoust (talk) 16:26, 26 July 2012 (UTC)

mental suffering examples[edit]

I feel that the examples of mental suffering at the end of the article are not really accurate. Although some actually are considered references to psychological pain (grief, heartache, anguish), others are just references to emotions (for example sadness, anger, hate), are considered circumstances that may lead to psychological pain (for example guilt, shame, rejection), or are concepts of which the relation to psychological pain is not immediately clear (for example, apathy, doubt, pity). To say that all these are examples of mental suffering is in my opinion a little too easy. I wouldn't mind if this list at the end was cleaned up. Esther Meerwijk (talk) 22:09, 19 August 2012 (UTC)

Congrats for your recent edits, and thanks for your much needed work as a researcher on psychological pain. Are the examples at the end of the article accurate? Well, it depends on how psychological pain is defined! In Brain Imaging and Behavior you seem to admit that sadness is an accurate exemplar (although less accurate than grief). Here is my take on that subject. If psychological pain was defined as restrictively as physical pain is defined, then it could differ from mental suffering like physical pain differs from physical suffering. More precisely, the sensory aspect of physical pain is what allows to differentiate between physical pain and other physical suffering (notwithstanding what P.D. Wall says, which incidentally reminds me of Bud Craig's theory on pain as a homeostatic emotion, and also of the recent distinction that was made between liking and wanting in "pleasure electrodes" --see In the case of psychological pain, it has seemingly no such distinctive aspect. You seem to suggest that it is always profoundly unpleasant (or lasting and unsustainable). If that was accepted, we should include that in the opening sentence of the article. It would mean that this article is not about mental suffering in a broad sense, but about psychological pain in a more restrictive, technical sense. I don't know yet whether it would be a wise move. In any case, the list of examples at the end of the article looks now as an odd pasting of a paragraph from the article suffering, and I am removing it. --Robert Daoust (talk) 15:26, 20 August 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for your response Robert. Based on an evaluation of various theories and models I've come to believe psychological pain to be profoundly unpleasant. Not every unpleasant feeling equals psychological pain, or mental suffering if you like. Sadness, because the appointment that you were really looking forward to got cancelled; Being bored because there is nothing on TV; Irritation because somebody on the bus is talking on the phone really loudly, disappointment because you lost a game, all these feelings may be considered unpleasant, but that in itself is in my opinion not enough to consider it psychological pain. Most importantly, because they are not lasting. Maybe that's restrictive, but I like to see it as setting boundaries to what psychological pain/mental suffering is and what it is not. Esther Meerwijk (talk) 03:51, 2 September 2012 (UTC)

As I said, Esther, the article might well be about psychological pain in a restrictive or technical sense. But then it would not be at all a synonym of mental suffering (i.e. mental unpleasantness). If some people come here thinking that psychological pain may be mild, superficial and short, we may refer them to the article suffering, or to a future article on mental suffering. We may ask other editors to help us about that question. --Robert Daoust (talk) 16:43, 5 September 2012 (UTC)


This article takes what is probably the most significant aspect of life for most people and reduces it to a few paltry materialistic/scientistic platitudes. We can do better. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:27, 5 May 2013 (UTC)

Hi, and welcome to Wikipedia! Please, find some good and reliable sources, be bold and do better! Lova Falk talk 12:15, 22 May 2013 (UTC)