by Véronique Houguet, marieclaire.fr,
Wi-Fi, relay antennas, smartphones... Marie no longer can stand waves which make her sick. How can one live a life that is saturated with them?
Electrohypersensitivity: what is it?
To say the least, for the past 11 years, electromagnetic waves have been ruining my life. They are a slow poison to my health. And the poison is everyhwere: relay antennas, mobile phones, Wi-Fi, cordless phones, microwave ovens, and electricity. Pure hell.
To save myself, I am tinkering with ersatz solutions.
When the pressure in my head from the waves becomes too painful, I wrap my skull in aluminum foil from eyebrows to neck. This makes a screen against the waves which bounce off, and in ten minutes, the suffering has lessened. I do the same in the subway, which I take almost never because, after four stops, I feel my head squeezed while a drill incessantly perforates each ear, back and forth. The effect is similar with the mobile phone blockers at the movies: pain, like hitting my head against a wall. I always have a roll of aluminum foil in my handbag, but the look from other people is difficult to bear. I feel very ill at ease.
I am not an enlightened being but the victim of a real illness, recognized in Sweden, German, Austria, and California: electrohypersensitivity, characterized by dizziness, burning sensations, a loss of concentration and memory. In order to continue teaching, I have created a helmet of aluminum. I wear sun glasses in school and also at home, even in winter because with advancing illness, I have become intolerant to light.
Electrohypersensitivity: fighting waves daily
I cannot even sleep with my husband in our bedroom. Each night since January 2003, I awake exactly at 3 am, without being able to fall back to sleep. It is impossible to get up, I am paralyzed in my bed from fatigue, without energy, even unable to walk to the bathroom. I know today that at 3 am, the phone operators "reboot" the relay antennas, spewing out a maximum of waves.
After having tested all corners of the house, I discovered that the less polluted space is the bathroom, between the bathtub and the cupboard. From now on, this is where I spend my nights. In order to fall asleep, I place above me a tent specifically made with tissue which stops the waves, lurking in this spot. In physics, this is called the Faraday cage principle. The cotton tissue contains a very fine metallic mesh composed of silver and copper in a sheath of polyurethane: it is this which stops the waves from getting through.
This makes people laugh: "Ah, she has relationship problems! She sleeps in the bathtub." Absolutely not! We are very much in love. I am so sad that we must have separate bedrooms, that during this time, my husband slept with me beneath the tent in the bathroom. The problem? It protects me from waves but there is relatively little air beneath. We are breathing in our own CO2. To avoid waking up exhausted, due to lack of sufficient oxygen during the night, he has returned to the bedroom. Alone.
The year 2003 coincided with my arrival at the Kindergarten where I teach. Unfortunately, my classroom is surrounded by a field of relay antennas less than 50 meters away. And its ceiling has at least 15 neon lights which flood waves down on me. Between my classroom, the street, and our home, I am bathed day and night in toxic waves. The result, little by little I am over-poisoning myself and developing a host of symptoms: unbearable head and stomach aches. memory loss, concentration problems, cognitive confusion, tinnitus, tendinitis just about everywhere, pain inside the bones, dizziness, breathing difficulties, unceasing irritability... And gastro and bilious attacks due to the impact of the Wi-Fi.
Electrohypersensitivity: the symptoms
I know now that there are anti-wave T-shirts - at 208 euros - and long underwear made of the same tissue as the tent. Had I discovered this earlier, I would have worn this to school because the more the body surface is protected, the less the waves penetrate, and seeing that we are bombarded, they are pervasive everywhere. I would have lasted longer in my classroom and, being electrosensitive, I would not have become electrohypersensitive. The problem with waves is that we over-contaminate ourselves non-stop and the illness worsens. Thus, recently, in order to make a two-minute call on a mobile phone - my threshold being less than one minute - I had the feeling for three days of having three-degree burns from the top of my head to my shoulders. And now, I am allergic to electrical waves.
A short while ago, I brutally felt unbearable pain in my stomach, just like contractions during labor.
I had to switch off the electricity meter in order to make it stop. Since then, I flee from the house when the device. which "draws" a lot of electricity, is functioning, such as the washing machine or the oven, because this increases the electrical field. The current is switched off during the day, apart from the refrigerator, freezer and furnace. We switch it back on in the evening because our children have had enough of eating by candlelight... But I always read by candlelight. We had to change the energy-saving lightbulbs which gave me headaches, to the old, incandescent ones. I have been poisoned for too long for the benefit to be evident.
I continue to tinker, trying to discharge myself from waves as much as possible by taking three to four showers a day, but this is only palliative. In the end, I had severe aftereffects, mainly cognitive. My orientation and memory problems worsened after the arrival of 4G, sometimes to the extent of mental confusion.
At times, I would become lost between my home and the bakery located 200 meters away, in a neighborhood where I have lived for years. At school when a blond girl of three hurt herself, I wasn't aware that I was consoling and cuddling a tall, four-year-old black boy. It was only when I heard the girl continue to cry that I realized that I was not consoling the right child. I had to stop teaching last September. Tragic because I love my work. But I arrived at the end of my rope. From time to time, I had to start over 10 times in order to read a magazine article. I did not recognize myself. But since 2003, I have worked to understand what is happening to me.
Electrohypersensitivity: how to treat it?
Ten years of suffering erroneous medical treatment without knowing why. The doctors linked the insomnia and memory loss to depression. Even if I did not feel depressed, I underwent two psychotherapies over three years. And I tried everything: phototherapy, sophrology, kiniseology, EMDR, osteopathy, acupuncture, homeopathy. Without results.
The end of the tunnel came in April 2013 when I was finally diagnosed with electrohypersensitivity by a professor, oncologist, specialist in environmental medicine who created a specific consultation in Paris in 2012. It is an immense relief, to finally put a name to what I am suffering from. But bad news awaited me: "You are in a pre-Alzheimer's state," he warned me. "If you continue to live in the middle of waves, in five years you will have Alzheimer's!" A shock more violent than if my mother had been afflicted.
The positive side is that I discovered that I am not alone and it is an unbelievable salvation to speak to others via the group of electrosensitive persons (www.electrosensible.org) and to feel I'm being listened to, understood, not rejected in my illness. My family tries not to judge me, even if they do not understand, but I spend my time convincing close friends that I am not crazy.
Fortunately, my husband and my children are supportive. We have left Ile-de-France to live in the middle of woods, in Burgundy, in a "white zone" where the nearest relay antenna and the nearest neighbor with Wi-Fi are 3 kilometers away. In fact, it is enough to distance myself from waves for at least 20 days in order for my body to discharge and my cognitive faculties and sleep to return to normal. Full of hope, I am changing my life to become again who I was before being polluted by waves. I hope to again find a life that is just simply - normal.
Original article in French: