Things a Person with an Illness doesn’t want to Hear

With a life changing illness comes an emotional rollercoaster. Often illnesses are accompanied with depression or anxiety. With emotional health and physical health you will have your good days, your bad days, and your really bad days. It’s always nice to see family and friends but we all hear things that we don’t want to hear as someone who fights a daily battle, whether it’s something said without the other person thinking or if it’s said without them really understanding what you are going through. Here is a list of things people with illnesses don’t exactly want to hear.

  • Are you ever going to get better?

Seems a little harsh when you have an incurable illness, right? I have heard this one believe it or not. When you are ill, you wish nothing more than anything to feel better. When you are doing everything possible and working your booty off to get better, I must say it’s pretty irritating to hear this statement.

  • Are you ever going to get out of bed or out of the house?

When you are ill and you’re in severe pain to the point that you’re irritable and feel like your body was pummeled by a bus, I must admit it is a continuous battle to pick yourself up. There are days when your joints ache, head is pounding and no matter how much you convince yourself to stand up and get out of bed you just can’t. This question is always irritating because you don’t want to appear like a slacker but you also don’t want to explain yourself daily to other people. So just let us sleep and dont interrogate us.

  • I don’t understand how you are so sick all of a sudden.

With an illness, you could be persistently on the go and then all of a sudden you’re laying in a hospital bed. The illness can come on suddenly and hit you like a ton of bricks. Some people can’t articulate how one day you are healthy and the next you are extremely sick. It can be grueling to wrap your brain around it, however, for a ill person we know we are sick, but we don’t want to feel like we are being questioned on how sick we are.

  • You dont look sick.

Every illness effects people differently. One person usually doesn’t have the same symptoms as someone else. Some chronic illnesses don’t necessarily make a person “look sick”. Just because a person doesn’t look sick doesn’t mean they aren’t. It is also common for an ill person to kind of hide symptoms around friends and family to make it seem less severe. It sometimes can be easier to put on an act that you are okay and then let it all go when you’re with people you are comfortable with or alone. But when people make this comment it seems like they don’t believe you when you say you’re sick. It can come off a little rude to someone who is suffering.

  • You’re skipping plans again, are we ever going to hangout?

I’ve learned being ill, it’s okay to say no once and a while. If you push too hard for one day, you could be out 5 days recovering. Your health is essential, and it’s crucial to listen to your body. If you are miserable and in pain then it’s okay to say no. Your friends or family will understand. But when we say no to plans most people who are ill feel bad cancelling, and when someone says this statement, it makes us feel like we flake all the time. We aren’t playing hookie, we cancel because our bodys’ say cancel.

It is essential to think before you say something. If you did, you would understand that we are suffering and we are irritable when it comes to what you say to us. An illness is a life changing situation and unfortunately it severely changes our social life. It is important for our friends and family to be patient and sensitive towards our well-being. It is crucial for us to lift each others spirits, especially during rough times. We all need to stick together.

64 thoughts on “Things a Person with an Illness doesn’t want to Hear”

      1. By the way this blog isn’t by the person I knew who had lupus, just the way she used to explain it to me with this post. πŸ™‚ I’m glad it was helpful!

  1. Excellent post and can identify with you. Was at a group class for fibromyalgia in my hospital on Wednesday and we were discussing the issue of people dismissing our pain because we don’t look sick or suggest it is all in our head. I also have degenerative disc disease with nerve root compression but am often told to just get on with it when I am falling out of my standing with pain. A doctor once told me, unless you are gushing blood or have a limb hanging off, no one wants to know and they will expect business as normal from you. That is why so many of us retreat into our own world when pain hits.

    1. Thank you! I’m so sorry you’ve had to go through that. But I can completely relate to that. It is frustrating when Drs dismiss our suffering just because they can’t see it. I have several autoimmune disesases and fibromyalgia and unfortunately I’ve had Drs turn away from my case even have had one say there’s nothing he can do for me so I’ll have to live my life suffering. But no one fully understands until they go through it. But all we can do is work our butts off, stick togethenr, and educate others. Thank you for sharing that with me, and stay strong. 😊

  2. Those are great points; thanks for writing this! I have had all these things said to me at one time or another. The one that does make me cranky is the comment about how I don’t look sick. I’m always suspicious that the speaker thinks I’m milking things for attention. Ugh! Here’s some more things that we chronically ill don’t want to hear:
    1. I knew someone with your condition; they died from it. (Seriously, a person has to be broken to tell me this!)
    2. At least you don’t have ____; that would be worse.
    3. You need to get more sunshine and exercise so you can get well!
    Seriously, most people are wonderful, but every once in a while I’m blindsided and stunned by a comment. The good thing is I’m learning to be more patient and empathic with others.
    So glad to find your blog. I have systemic sclerosis (scleroderma), Sjogren’s, and a bossy, self-absorbed cat named MacKenzie.

    1. Thank you for taking the time to read It! I completely agree with you and you made excellent points. It’s hard to explain the existence of our illnesses but I am becoming more empathic with others as well. But there’s always one personπŸ˜€! I unfortunately have heard number 2 of your points quite often. But all we can do is support each other that is going through the same thing and inform the ones that arent.

      I’m so glad you found my blog! And thank you for following! What a coincidence! I have both of those autoimmune diseases and your cat has a lovely name😊

  3. You are an inspiration! I am an independent provider (caregiver) to developmentally challenged adults. The things I have people say to my clients are unreal!

  4. My mother said I should shake myself up and get out and have a good walk and stop feeling sorry for myself lol, it is difficult when your illness has not being diagnosed 😊

  5. I am reading what you write about Mackenzie. I can feel it is hard for another person who doesn’t feel it to understand, but on the other side, I, myself, I know how you feel. Like I said, I never heard of this illness and it is good that I came to read and learned about it, it is going round and round my mind. I am trying to understand. I feel so sad, you are young. I think any mother would feel the same. Keep writing and keep spreading the word. I am so glad you open a blog. I will keep reading your posts. And I will write a little note to you each time I read your post. Courage and happiness all the way girl!

    1. Thank you so much! I really appreciate it! And I’m glad you want to learn about the illness, most people don’t really care if it’s not happening to them! I will continue reading yours as Well! Glad I came across your page! Best wishes!!

  6. I like your site. We can learn from each other. Illness of any kind is hard. I liked the advice you shared. Glad to have met you.

  7. Right said…if someone ask me that i dont look sick then i say him please lay down on my seat an then ill ask him return πŸ˜€

  8. Beautifully written and shared! I think so often people don’t think before they say something. Nor do they take the time to realize how someone else is really and truly doing inside and out. These are wonderful reminders you’ve shared. Have a lovely day. 😊❀️

    1. I agree with you, unfortunately others don’t take the time to fully understand or think about how their words can affect you. Thank you so much, that means a lot! Have a great weekend! 😊❀

  9. Amazing how insensitive people can be sometimes, especially when it’s an β€œinvisible” illness. I’m glad you reposted/updated this.

  10. Thanks for the likes on a few of my blog posts today, I think my delivery is lacking somewhat but hopefully that will change. Your site looks pretty cool, thanks again.

  11. Having been a caretaker, from 2003-11, I say put yourself first and never offer explanations. People can use their eyes and ears- and can learn to stop advancing their own agendas.

  12. Oh my goodness, I relate SO strongly to this post! It’s really comforting to be reminded that we’ve all been on the receiving end of comments like these <3

  13. It’s bad enough when people say these things when you have a “new normal”, but it’s worse when your disease is flaring up. I’d rather them not say anything at all.

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