Let’s face, it, Fibro is pretty isolating, and can be emotionally devastating. You feel so sick that you really don’t want to be around others. You get tired of having people ask you the same questions, or of people who just haven’t a clue as to what you’re going through. Add this stress on to the stress of being ill and the situation becomes almost impossible.
Emotional support from family, friends and others is essential for the person suffering from Fibromyalgia. It will not cure it, but lack of support or even abuse will make matters worse.
I have no statistics to back up the next statement, but at least 10% of the women I see for consultations are battered and this can be emotionally, physically, sexually and or mentally. I always do a consultation with both spouses present because i want to see how the non-sick spouse is interacting with the Fibro patient. If I see the signs of battering, I won’t accept that person as a patient.
The Fibro sufferer must have good emotional support during the illness and certainly while undergoing treatment in my office. There will be times they need plenty of rest, the family needs to pitch in to help with the cooking house work, and the shopping.
The good news is that the majority of spouses are very supportive but think about this for a minute. Imagine the husband whose most important person in his life is his wife, whom he loves with all his heart. He sees his wife suffering and there isn’t a thing he can do. He watches her go from doctor to doctor, use this med and that med, sees very little results and still there is not a thing he can do. This has a tremendous emotional effect on him. We men are conditioned to be the caretakers and providers (I know this is politically incorrect), but it is true. When we can’t do a thing to help our wives, we feel helpless and angry.
The bottom line is that Fibro not only affects the sufferer, but also the family members, perhaps not symptom wise, but emotionally just as badly.
For the abused sufferer, get help immediately and take steps to change the situation, for the non-abused sufferer (though it might be difficult), try to see the situation through your spouse’s eyes. You’ll be amazed at the toll Fibro can play on the family members.