I’m sharing a status update from Facebook below and then I’m sharing some comments and links that document how lonely and isolating being chronically ill can be. I know many folks who are still in earlier phases of withdrawing from psych drugs are still feeling desperately alone and sicker than they ever imagined possible. It does pass. A lot of us have made it through that hellish darkness. Things really do get better. We come to thrive again. See also: It Gets Better Series
My mother is visiting next week. I’ve not seen her in 6 years. I was too ill to have visitors who couldn’t abide the extreme nature of what I was dealing with when I was struck with the drug iatrogenesis (medical injury). That included almost everyone. Most people who came by never wanted to come again and did not. I lost all my friends for a good long time. My husband and a woman who came to me via a volunteer organization to do Reiki (who has since become a dear friend) were the only two human beings who saw me during that time. My Reiki friend who had been a hospice chaplain knew how to sit with such deep suffering. She told me that what she saw I was going through, in her opinion, was darker and more painful than anyone she’d met in hospice. Having worked in hospice myself, that rings true. Anyway…I’m grateful for the two witnesses to the darkest time of my life, my husband and this friend of mine who held the faith with me when that is all we had. I’m also so grateful that I can again see other people I love very much that this journey kept me from for so many years. I have reconnected with friends and it will be very good to see my mother whom I miss very much. (facebook)
I’m cutting and pasting the below post from the drop down navigation menu.
The isolation and sense of abandonment many people deal with when sick with protracted withdrawal illness.
This is a collection of posts that were all very popular and broadly shared among people in protracted withdrawal illness on community boards. I also still get people writing to me and asking me to remind me where they can find them on the blog. In fact the reason I’m making this page here now is because both yesterday and today two different people wrote to me asking me for the links to these pieces.
I wish isolation and the feeling of abandonment was not so common when we are ill, but it is and it does help to know that we are not alone in this phenomena so I’m sharing the posts I’ve done on the topic here.
There is both validation for those who feel abandoned here and also hope and inspiration that it will pass and we will all be better people after we regain our health and perspective.
- In the near absence of friendship…
- When I think of my relationships I have no regrets
- When Friends Disappear During a Health Crisis
- Living with chronic physical illness, why are we invisible?
- This is what it’s like
More recently I added a post in which I’ve come to have compassion on some of the painful behavior our loved ones show in the face of our illness:
Also in time as our souls heal we can learn to cope better and better with the limitations our bodies still have:
A collection of links: Information and inspiration for the chronically ill
These archives now span close to five years. They are a record of a time in my life when I was learning and transforming at a rate unlike any other time in my life. I say this as a way of disclaimer. In the earlier years of this blog I am processing shock and dismay. In the early years I am undisputedly angry. I have worked out much of that and see things in a much less judgmental manner now. This continues to evolve. I sometimes want to take down old posts because they no longer convey how I feel, but I realize that they may still be helpful to people who are going through something similar now. The journey got me to where I am today, it’s just odd to have some of it in writing here for all to see.