The Unique Type Of Loneliness That Comes With Chronic Illness




By Britt Renee in The Mighty.


It seems like getting familiar with loneliness is inherent in living the chronic illness life. This loneliness doesn’t come from being literally and physically alone, though I’m learning there is a decent amount of “alone time” one has to learn to appreciate when being chronically ill. There will always be those nights in the hospital by yourself and the long days flaring at home alone, and the likelihood of attending the perpetual frequent doctor appointments alone is inevitable. But I mean the loneliness of always feeling alone no matter what you do and whom you’re with.

There’s no one who will ever quite understand what it’s like to live every day not knowing if you’ll be in pain, able to keep a meal down, remember to take all of your medicines on time or maintain a sense of positivity and hope when circumstances seem unchanged. I realize everyone’s life is unique and there will always be experiences unique to every individual, but the thing about living with a chronic illness is it’s the unintentional isolation that binds us all together in a way. Somehow, though unexplainable, we all feel a sense of connection in our loneliness. I guess it’s a bit of an overstatement to say all, but I’ll say “many” in my experience express this sentiment in one way or another.


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