… from you, as a friend or relative? Or, more exactly, what kinds of often well meaning things do you say or do for someone with chronic illness that are actually hurting and not helping?
I have a good friend who, like many other friends actually, has a chronic illness that is sometimes painful, sometimes scary, sometimes annoying, and at any given time, I think, is one or more of those things, and she has written a blog post listing over a dozen things that people often do or say that she wishes they wouldn’t. Most of these are really simple things, often unintentional, but not without consequence. Some of these, I think, are things people do because they are talking to themselves or about themselves rather than to the person their mouth is pointed at while exuding noise (which is what most humans do most of the time anyway). Or, they are extolling a belief or two that they need everyone else to hear even if it is irrelevant at best, likely very wrong, and just plain harmful in some cases.
Now, as soon as I read this post by my friend I immediately emailed her and said “I’M SO SORRY I DID ALL THOSE THINGS, HOLY CRAP, SORRY” but it turns out that that I was cool. But, honestly, it is easy to see how some items on her list would be so easy to do by accident (and one would naturally be forgiven), which is why you need to read this post. Even if you think you are doing this right, you may well be accidentally doing it wrong.
Have a look at Let’s Talk About Chronic Illnesses! by Sarah Moglia.