If you have chronic pain, you may have one of several conditions that qualify as an “Invisible” illness. Chronic pain doesn’t just effect you, it affects the people that love you. This is definitely a stressful situation especially if you have a job, a spouse, children, pets, and on and on. There are some strategies to keep everything running smoothly.
If you have Chronic pain:
- Don’t displace your anger for your pain towards your family. When the situation’s got you down, resist the urge to snap at your family. They can’t control your condition either.
- Do ask for help if you need it. Many times we don’t want to ask loved ones to help because we want to retain our independence. However, when you are in pain, sometimes you need to put your comfort over your pride.
- Do rest, if you are hurting, rest and don’t overdo it.
- Don’t overreact to small problems at home. When you are in a lot of pain your patience tends to go pretty quickly.
- Get educated, the more you know about your condition the better you will be able to manage it and how you will know when you need to recruit help, whether you like it or not.
If you live with someone who has chronic pain:
- Be compassionate
- Be understanding when your loved one can’t complete a task because of their pain.
- Keep in mind you don’t know what they are feeling or what their pain level is.
- Do what you can to help
- If you live together and you know your loved one is having a lot of pain, help them with tasks that may be tough for them to do on their own.
- Don’t by cynical or dismiss their pain
- One of the worst things about having a silent illness is exactly that. No one can see any marks or bruises, they have to “take our word” that we are in awful pain.
- Don’t tell them to “get over it” or “it can’t be that bad,” trust me, if we could we would. We don’t enjoy living in pain.
- Get educated, the more you learn about their battles, the more comfortable you will be and the more you’ll know to help care for your loved one.
Chronic illnesses can be managed, and if you and your family remember to follow these tips, you may be able to enjoy a happy life and not let the pain win!