Isolation breeds loneliness for the fibromyalgia patient. It is sad to watch our world become smaller and smaller. The less we can do, the more that others stay away. People stop trying to include us because of our cancellation track record. I get it, but I sure as heck don’t like it. I’m guessing you don’t either.
If we’re not careful, the pain of loneliness can wreak havoc on our emotions, ushering in depression and the feeling that we no longer matter. We need to be careful not to sell ourselves short and start thinking we’re not important or worth spending time with.
With fibromyalgia, it’s important to develop and maintain healthy coping skills. Sometimes that requires us to reframe our chronic health and work on maintaining a positive attitude. Negativity breeds discontent and makes us feel bad about ourselves, which opens the door to a lonelier existence.
I believe in taking a negative situation and looking for the positives. Some examples would be:
• I’m in bed so much of the time, but I can use some of that time to write and encourage others.
• I almost never have the energy to go places, but I can share pizza and a movie at home with my husband.
• I feel bad that my husband has to do so much, but I use that thought to motivate me to think of small ways that I can show my appreciation for him.
• It drives me crazy that my house is not as tidy as I’d like it to be, so I’ve decided that having a clean house (sanitation-wise) is better than a tidy house.
We were created for connection, and when that doesn’t happen, we can spiral downward pretty quickly. So, don’t be afraid to reach out and tell others what you need. Discriminate when choosing whom to invite into your life, understanding the limited energy (physically and emotionally) that you have.
Honestly, if I didn’t have strong faith in God, I am not sure how well I’d handle my loneliness. Pain and loneliness change us, but we do have a choice in whether our resulting perspective ultimately becomes negative or positive. Always strive for the positive.
Don’t let loneliness keep you from reaching out to others. Invite others into your world, on your timetable. If you have a day that you’re feeling fairly well, call a friend and invite them over for coffee, lunch, or just to talk on the phone and catch up with each other’s lives. Remember that there is no shame in loneliness. Solitude can be a time of getting to know yourself better.
Note: Fibromyalgia News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Fibromyalgia News Today, or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to fibromyalgia.