By Kendall Kuzma in The Mighty.
I have been unwell for three years now and unable to work for the bulk of that time. Having a chronic illness can create a complex range of challenges for relationships. Everything from guilt and resentment to feeling like one partner is contributing more than the other. Although my husband and I have spoken on many occasions about how we’re feeling, I recently sat down with him to gather specific insight into his thoughts. We both sincerely hope that his perspective can assist any other people in our situation. Thanks for reading.
How did you feel when I was first properly diagnosed with Chronic fatigue syndrome?
“In a roundabout way I felt relieved. It was good that we could actually put a diagnosis around it rather than not knowing or hoping or waiting. It was good to be able to pinpoint it and think, ‘Well that explains a lot.’ And it could have been a lot worse. But also, at the time I probably didn’t realize the gravity of it.”
What was it like when I told you I couldn’t work anymore?
“It all feels like a blur because it wasn’t like suddenly there was a critical moment, like when you break a leg. Your decline was gradual and it was more that you couldn’t work ‘at the moment’ because we all believed it wasn’t going to be for that long. At the time I took the approach that it was an illness or an injury like any other, and that you required treatment and time off to recover…again, not thinking it would last for this long. But I suppose I’ve learned to adjust over time.”
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