I cannot tell you how tired I am of hearing this, and it generally comes from a healthy person. It’s just as bad as “things could be worse.” I know that a lot of other chronically ill people feel this way, too. I don’t think a lot of people realize how difficult it is to be positive when you’re chronically ill, especially when you’re still trying to get everything figured out. Going through tests, experimenting with different treatments, taking 2 steps forward and one step back, more tests, on and on, repeatedly… it’s HARD. I also don’t find it helpful when people tell me, “I know people with cancer who are still able to be positive.” And that’s great for them, but not everyone has that capability. Pulling yourself out of that mindset isn’t easy. For people like me, it’s even harder. I have lived my whole life with a negative mindset… that’s just how it was. I thought the worst of every situation, assumed the worst in people, that way I couldn’t be let down if I was “positive” and got my hopes up. But I still ended up getting let down anyways so I guess that blew up in my face. What I’m really trying to say is, when you don’t live it and you’ve never lived it or anything close to it, you don’t understand how difficult it can be. That statement is often more harmful than helpful. I would love to “just be positive” but it’s not like I can just wake up one day and BOOM! my mindset changed. The fact that I suffer from depression, anxiety, and borderline personality also don’t help the situation. Everything in my brain tells me to be negative and it’s like I can’t go against it. I try, I really do. And I do have days, or sometimes even just a few hours, when I am positive and then all of a sudden I’m back to the old mindset. It’s not a switch that I, myself, can turn on and off. The intermingling of chronic illness and mental illness is extremely stressful and sometimes I just don’t know how to handle it. I feel like some people (the people who say this, or say other things that they think are uplifting but aren’t) don’t want to face the harsh reality that is chronic illness. If it’s not happening to them, not affecting them, of course it’s easy for them to say those things. I’ve been told, “If you don’t start being more positive, you’ll lose everyone by pushing them away with your negativity.” That has already happened. A long time ago. I’m trying to rebuild my life and my support system but guess what? That’s also difficult when you’re sick. Cut me some slack. I’m only human. We all are. Maybe if there was a little more understanding and a lot less supposedly “uplifting” comments, we’d all be a little better off. I know that if “healthy” people (not that it’s us against you) would do some reading and research, especially on a loved one’s particular health problem, things would be so much different.
The link below includes this particular statement, along with others that generally aren’t helpful to a chronically ill person:
If you can, I would so appreciate you taking the time to read my story and donate if you can… I’m trying to raise enough to be able to get a service dog.