Monday, January 4, 2010

Lyme disease and romantic relationships

Relationships can help to make Lyme disease more bearable, but Lyme disease does not help to make relationships bearable!

For all you Lymies in relationships and partners of Lyme disease (and other tick-borne illness) patients,



Hearing that it's not just us can help to make these situations a lot more bearable.

No, it's not that you're a bad partner, it's not that you have a bad relationship, it's just that Lyme disease is bad!

Let's share our experiences. Please join! I am trying to get this group up and going and we need more active members.

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Info about the group:

Tick-borne illnesses (TBIs) can be a difficult challenge for relationships, particularly since they often affect the brain and other important aspects of human functioning.

This group is a place for partners of people with tick-borne illness to:

1) Talk about what it's like being in a relationship with someone with a TBI with other people who might understand where you're coming from.

2) Find (perhaps) that other people feel the same way you do, or find that other relationships involving TBI have similar issues, which might make it easier to see in perspective (i.e. it's not just you).

3) Share what works for you and your partner.

4) Discuss the reality and symptoms of TBI, which can be highly varied and which can be hard to distinguish from mental illness, hypochondria, etc. Share the difficulties of doubting your partner or how you came to understand the reality of their illness.

5) Get resources for learning about their disease and being supportive.

6) Talk about your fears, what it's like for you - illness isn't hard on only the ill person; it's hard on everyone connected to them, particularly partners, boyfriends, girlfriends, spouses.

7) Think about how you counteract the negative effects of illness on your relationship. How to preserve equality, emotional safety, closeness, etc.

8) Talk about how to support your partner. Love and acceptance from partners can make a big difference to ill people.

"Key to the couple's success was realizing that chronic illness also affects the 'healthy' loved one. 'I know Sherrie's experience has been much tougher than mine,'says Grett. 'But having her realize how it affected me helped us band together. We have become allies rather than competitors.'" - Marriage and Chronic Illness (see in links)

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