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Review for International Paruresis Association, Inc., Catonsville, MD, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

This is a very important organization that has helped me come to grips with a syndrome i have faced since childhood. I always thought of myself as isolated, fighting this situation all by myself, without any support group to speak of. It was only when i started researching on the internet, after i had gone through middle school, highschool, and college, did I realize i was not alone, and that there was help.

Through Dr. Soifer's concerted effort he has helped countless people such as myself come together, step out of anonymity to discuss collectively and thereby begin the first steps of overcoming this issue. It is because of his organization and the ipatalk message board that I was able to attend a workshop spearheaded by the late Chris Mccullough, and begin to slowly realize the power of graduated exposure therapy and cognitive behavior in recovery.

This association, with its pamphlets, books (shy bladder , free to pee) have been instrumental in leading me out of my mind and into a life interspersed with social gatherings and activities, something unheard of just six years ago. I have not gotten over shy bladder, and it remains to be seen if one can truly be "cured" of it, however, through this association i have learned to realize that i am not alone, that there are countless thousands who are fighting this crusade alongside me.

This nonprofit serves a marginalized portion of the community, one that has for too long had to live with the shame and social stigma associated with this condition. It helps empower and educate, and through its efforts on the new media front serves to improve workplace environments for sufferers. It has been crucial in leading efforts for alternative drug testing, exposing workplace discrimination for those who are disabled by this condition, and giving a voice to the estimated 7% of the general US populace (and who knows what % of the world populace) who have for years suffered silently

This is a worthy non profit that lives up to its mission statement; The only thing preventing it from scaling to even greater heights capable of larger impacts is funding - funding to spread the message to the powerbrokers in congress to help provide full and equal protection under the american disabilities act for employees to preclude them from being unjustly fired for failing to produce a drug testing sample due to the archaic, conventional method of urinalysis (a methodology especially ingrained in the D.O.T) - funding for scientific research into curing this condition - funding to help bring this issue out in the open to serve as a conduit for discussion in every household across the world without shame.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My own personal experience in dealing with shy bladder.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Provide even more funding to help a) spearhead medical research into the cause and solution for this condition. b) bring it to lawmakers' attention to help alter current drug testing laws to make it nondiscrimatory towards those afflicted by SBS c) educate through the power of social media /marketing (SEM) to bring more people out of the veil of anonymity, to learn that they need not suffer alone, that there is hope..that there is help.

Role:  Donor & I participated as a donor in funding dues for the last few years.