Close relationships can sometimes get very demanding on our time and energy. As lupus patients we need to set very clear limits to the demands others place on us. There are things we can do and others that take too much out of us that we can’t really manage. For this we have honest with ourselves. Being there for your family is important to maintain healthy relationships, but you do have to manage your energy, so negotiate with yourself honestly. Which of the things that are in your to do list are essential, which can be done by others, and in order of importance, what activities are more important to your family that are worth the effort and which are not so important that you can skip. When you have clear in your mind what you can and are willing to do, have a talk with your family and friends. Tell them your thoughts and feelings and let them know which activitites they can count on you doing (when possible) and which are no-no’s from the start.
Setting limits in a loving way is difficult when you are at the end of your rope. Set them when you have clear in your mind what you are up to doing and what you are not, and talk about your limitations calmly and reasonably, but assertively. You have already conducted the negotiations with yourself, there is but little room to negotiate further with your loved ones. This manner of limit setting usually gets much better results than doing it when you can’t take it anymore.