Living with chronic illness is incredibly challenging at times (understatement of the year!) You wake up with no pain then sudden pain,or you wake up in pain deal with all day pain. You can’t do this , you can’t do that. Because your body just won’t allow it. You have to be strong even when you don’t want to be.
Then there are days you just want to say “I give up” and lay in bed because it’s the only place your bones and joints don’t hurt as much. That’s a slippery slope, that’s when depression wants to creep in and destroy you even further instead of physically now it’s effecting you mentally.
The answer is Support! You need to get in a good support group.
Even if your immobile there are many groups on Facebook all you have to do search it.
But having a good group of people in our lives on whom we can lean on, share with, commiserate with,can greatly decrease that challenge of depression setting in.
So that’s why today over on my blog
I’m writing about the importance of a good support system.
We really need them when it seems like the world is crashing down. But we also need them in the days we’re doing ok.
Have you ever experienced the pain of rejection or just felt less of a person from the people you thought were there for you?
Friends & Family either refuse to understand or just don’t want to be bothered by learning about the disease \ disorder.
Or your own brain starts thinking I’m useless, I can’t do anything like I used to. You need a support system!
Many people who don’t have a chronic life, struggle to understand life with a chronic condition. I wish they did but honestly the only people that understand are those that also have chronic condition.
Some people including people you know, at some point may say really hurtful things out of pure ignorance like gee you don’t look sick, or wow your house is a bit messy today ,or what did you do today , or geez I wish I didn’t have to go to work anymore.
Or they blame you for your illness/ condition.
Well if ate better,exercised more maybe you wouldn’t be in this spot , or smoked less etc….
Just ignore them. Badgering you isn’t going to change your illness. You even wonder why did I tell them about your illness.
Yes, unfortunately some people should not be trusted with your feelings or the the truth about your pain.
They just won’t understand. And it’s not up to you to keep explaining yourself.
But there are good listeners that offer you a good and safe support system,you just need to know how to identify them!
I really want you to get in a good support system , make it a priority, even if things aren’t too bad right now or you just been diagnosed and have no one to ask questions to.
Get in a support group.
You will be so glad you did. We can help you with any questions you may have , we’re here to listen, offer life experience, suggestions. We don’t offer medical advice as that’s between you and your doctor.
You can’t just expect everyone to be there for you in your struggle with illness. Let’s face it not everyone can handle it, and quite frankly not everyone will want to . And not everyone is worthy.
How Will A Safe Person Make You Feel?
Do they make you feel comfortable being yourself?
You should feel comfortable with who you are, flaws and all. No one should make you feel judged or less of the amazing person you are. If they do move on….
Do they make you feel energized? Ready to fight a good fight? Supportive people should nit suck the life out of you, leaving you feeling worn out.
They should make you feel more energized by the time they leave or hang up the phone. If you find a person exhausting, they should not be in your support system.
You should find support from a variety of relationships. No one person can give us everything we need not even your spouse!.
If you aren’t married or in a serious relationship, this obviously doesn’t apply. But if you are, your spouse can be the most immediate source of support in your life.
Most of us live with spouses that don’t have an illnesses themselves, so they have a lot of learning to do in order to understand us.
Your responsibility is to explain your condition and your struggles and what you would like from your spouse. Spell it out!
They are not mind readers so don’t expect them to simply know or understand.However, don’t assume your spouse is able or willing to support you in this way. Unfortunately, some are not, but luckily there are other relationships that can be supportive.
If you have people in your family, whether it’s a spouse, parents or cousins, they should be a part of your support system. Just be sure your relationships are healthy and helpful.
Again, communication is key when it comes to family because they’ve known you so long. They may be relating to you based on assumptions, so be clear about your needs.
Ahh yes friends can be some of the best relationships to be part of your support system. You get to choose these people, and choose when to see them, when to talk to them.
Just realize not all your friends will be a support for you, but one or two that will is great.
Friends should be encouraging and understanding, and this should be mutual.
Your Support Groups
The best people to understand what you’re going through are those who have experienced it themselves.
That’s why support groups can be so helpful. Whether it’s through Facebook or a community center, others who are struggling as you do can help you through what they have already experienced
They listen well, empathise, and offer advice when you want it.
Chronic illness can often be very isolating, but support groups provide a like minded community. One word of caution for any online groups: when people aren’t interacting face-to-face they feel more comfortable saying whatever they want.
Just because people are in the group because of their experience with illness doesn’t mean they will be safe people.
Always exercise caution when sharing in online forums. Make sure you’re aware of the risk of receiving unkind words and unwarranted advice.Some individuals can be just rude.
I don’t tolerate mean people and people who bully others are just inconsiderate these people will be removed.
I also have seen other groups where the leaders were the bullies. Get out if you join a group where the leaders are bossy,mean and or downgrading. No one needs that. We have enough to deal with.
Who doesn’t love a dog or cat, bird, lizard whatever …that snuggles, they can be life savers dogs they get you out of the house for walks, and even help you meet people in your neighborhood. Time at home is much less lonely than it would have been before a pet enter your life.
Pets can be the best part of a support system. For some therapy pets can be a crucial part of the ability to function. For others it can be therapeutic to have something to nurture. And they love us no matter how we look or feel.
I personally don’t have a pet as they are not allowed in my building, but when I visit my family their 2 dogs are so lovable you can’t get bored when they are around.
If you don’t have a pet and are considering one make sure you are prepared in how to care for it. Be sure you are physically able to do so. Also, I hope you consider rescuing one.
I hope you find a good support system. If you have Avascular Necrosis/Osteonecrosis your welcome to join my fb group.
Have a great day.