Sometimes I think it does good to break down in front of doctors - particularly either very caring ones (like your GP) or very uncaring ones - sometimes its the only way to really get through how bad things are.

I would be so angry too with the pain clinic for having basically been completely dishonest and pig ignorant with you. How on earth can a pain clinic hope to treat you if they don't have any idea of the impact of AS on your body? Maybe thats the first question for any new doctor, that is treating you for anything - "what do you know about AS?".

I know the whole psychological thing too - I don't believe its "mental illness" if its situational, its a normal reaction to an abnormal situation. If you can find the right psychologist (probably not someone who works with that pain clinic!) who really understands chronic illness, chronic pain and CBT, then you may be able to get some useful help. But, I totally agree that its not going to get rid of your pain. It might help you cope a bit better, it might drop your pain one notch on the pain scale which would make it manageable, but AS inflammation and damage just doesn't go away with mind control.

I understand your medication anxiety too - if your GP wants to help you try things again, then I am sure that together you can find a "safe" way to do it, where you know you have medical backup if things go wrong as well as the means to call that backup (which might include family and friends being aware of danger signs, and some kind of emergency speed dial on your phone).

Hang in there. Your GP sounds great. Let them lead on a plan for you, and I really hope things turn the corner for you soon.

So glad you were able to get out and do something nice too - even if it meant you had to accept the hurting afterwards.