Chronic fatigue and women’s rage

1.  This post is a response to


I had the same condition during my twenties. My solution was to realize how much aggression I had turned inwards. Women — especially in right wing or religiously informed cultures — tend to unconsciously model themselves on the ideal of passive suffering as a form of sainthood. It’s not thought through or deliberate but an unconscious tendency. The body gets overheated and run down because all the energy that should be directed at the world is locked inside the body with nowhere to go. One should be sublimating this aggression by establishing one’s identity in the world, but the unconscious mind is determined to lock one into passive sainthood.


That was certainly my condition and there is no doubt in my mind that the illness was physiological. There is a certain point where you can’t simply “snap out of it”, because you’ve ruined your physiological health with this ongoing misdirected (and entirely unconscious) aggression.


The solution is to bring the aggression out of you in some way, very gradually, whilst working to develop a healthier self image at the unconscious level. The difficulty is that many would resist the idea that they harbored unconscious aggression. I had no trouble facing this insight as I have a very innovative mindset (which I had also been repressing).


May 2012 ADDENDUM: Many women try to solve the problem of macro- or micro-aggressions against them (designed to teach them the secondary nature of their place) by conforming to patriarchal mores and accepting traditional gender roles. They end up giving in to those who would have society return to a very traditional state. I resolved not to be one of those women. A person with situationally-engendered chronic fatigue needs to face their anger and aggression about the behaviour of significant people in their lives, as well as their anger about significant life events.Then they must gradually develop ways to use anger more productively, to release that pressure that has already built up. This has to be a long term goal, as one’s body needs to recover from all the abuse accepted into it over the long term, as a result of staying passive and submissive to events that had filled you with still unrecognized rage.



  1. Somebody asked how one gets rid of any internal build up of aggression. I learned a lot about human character structure from Nietzsche. That’s how I understand that, unbeknownst to myself, my character structure had become masochistic. I accepted everything without getting angry. I was very angry about having to emigrate from Zimbabwe, but I had no idea. I never expressed any negative emotion about anything. I was perfectly controlled. Nietzsche uses such terms as “physiologically inhibited” and mocks those who do not understand that life is not lived on the basis of unconditional compliance to social norms. Rather, “Digressions, objections, delight in mockery, carefree mistrust are signs of health; everything unconditional belongs in pathology.” Anyway, this extreme level of self control seems almost the opposite to what most people are struggling with today, so it makes it very difficult to offer any advice. I do advise reading Nietzsche, though, if you want to try to figure out psychology.


One thought on “Chronic fatigue and women’s rage

  1. And, from the comments in that article Clarissa linked to, this is exactly what I’m talking about concerning the female martyr complex:
    “i’m so exhausted of the rigamarole of recommendations and the insistence that it’s mind over matter and i’m not trying hard enough. i don’t know anyone who *tries* harder than i do. i am always perky, happy, grateful, and optimistic. i’m a giver, i go to church and i pray daily and diligently. i give to charity. i volunteer. i love babies and animals. i do yoga. i’ve done acupuncture. i get trigger point injections and adjustments. i’ve been through and through psych consults and testing… neuro psych testing. i’ve messed with my diet, i’ve taken supplements. i meditate. I DO EVERY EFFING THING UNDER THE SUN. including get sun, and avoid the sun, vitamin D supplements…”

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