Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Traditional Evolution Blog: Don't Bully Me

Here's an interesting perspective on chronic illness from a young woman dealing with Stevens-Johnson Syndrome. Read what Mayo Clinic has to say about this debilitating disorder:
Stevens-Johnson syndrome is a rare, serious disorder of your skin and mucous membranes. It's usually a reaction to a medication or an infection. Often, Stevens-Johnson syndrome begins with flu-like symptoms, followed by a painful red or purplish rash that spreads and blisters. Then the top layer of the affected skin dies and sheds. Continue reading here
Her blog Traditional Evolution for the most part focuses on her experiences as an author. But recently she penned a very moving post:
Someone asked what I was doing that day and I expressed that my plans had been changed due to illness. They encouraged me to go anyway and I said that I would if I could, but I was unable. 
Cue a rant about their terminally ill relative, who still got out and tried to do things, even though they were sick. 
Firstly, I genuinely hope it’s true and that their bedridden, reliant on morphine relative does get out and do stuff. Because that’s awesome and in the chronic illness community, you learnt to celebrate each other’s victories. 
However I wonder if that same relative knows someone is using their illness to bully other people? I am guessing no. 
I hadn't thought about the bullying issue, which is incredibly perceptive. To use the severity of another person's illness to try to force someone with chronic illness to participate in something isn't a concept that I had thought about, but it's a valid point. A right-on-the-money assessment of some clueless folks' behavior.

Talitha goes on to list five "things I would like to drill into people":
1. It’s not a competition. No one ‘wins’ by being sicker. Trust me, if I could lose that competition, I would. 
2. No one has a right to judge anyone else’s health. Not even doctors.  Doctors should diagnose and treat. There is a special place in hell for judgemental doctors..... Continue reading here
Note: Talitha uses slightly spicier language than I do. Just FYI. Check it out anyway.

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