Thursday, 29 July 2010

DR. JOHN'S CASE NOTES : THE STRESS PUPPY SYNDROME Astute observers often notice the more irritating and annoying character traits of their fellow club members ahead of any other traits . Some witty observers will strive to give them a label. So yet again I owe Leslie Shafer a big favour for drawing my attention to a particular disorder I had unbelievably overlooked. " Stress puppy " was a slang term created by Leslie to define......... " a person who seems to thrive on being stressed out by every bid, and whining every time he/she goes down ".
Well, I can now confirm the existence of these symptoms as belonging to a particular and rather disturbing disorder, which should be forever known as The Stress Puppy Syndrome, if only as an acknowledgement and thanks to Leslie. Having looked closely at clients who clearly have this condition, I am shocked to see the wider picture of casualties involved. Bridge clubs seem overrun with whinging, whining, highly strung, highly neurotic players, who act like new born dogs. They arrive at the club all frisky, enthusiastic and playful.....only to sit down and be on edge, stressing themselves on each and every hand to the point of nervous exhaustion.
Whimpering under their breath every time an awkward decision has to be made, their earlier moments of joyful, playful bravado soon become a distant memory. When things start to go wrong, victims of this syndrome become crestfallen, and in the process become more stressed out and prone to whining. They whimper like a young puppy being forced to wait for a bowl of food.
However, other symptoms come into play much later on during a difficult session : they become morose, extremely pessimistic, and completely overwhelmed by a strong persecution complex. As their stress levels increase so does their capacity to whine.
As a therapist who has tried in vain to combat this affliction, I am come to the conclusion that acute sufferers would be better off if their partners had the common sense to take them to the vet to be " put down ". It may seem to many that I come across as a defeatist, but one thing is for sure........ I'm not a miracle worker....and I'm certainly not a licenced dog-trainer.

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