What Its Like to Be Diagnosed With a Chronic Illness. Published by US News

I had symptoms for a long time but doctors told me I was fine and it was all in my head, while performing all kinds of tests with weirder than ever names and possibilities. No matter how many times they told me it was nothing, I knew there was something wrong with me. I felt so bad, was that normal? I questioned my own sanity some days, and other days I questioned theirs. I had grown scared to go to the doctor when yet another symptom appeared. I felt like the doctor would think, here comes the hypochondriac, what will she invent now? But I wasnt inventing anything, was I? The pain and fatigue were real, and I couldnt get out of bed some days. Or was my family right, and I was just lazy?

Then I became sick again and was referred to a rheumatologist. I really hoped he would finally know what was wrong with me.

Here s what I heard: You have a chronic illness, and it will never go away. It s degenerative and will eventually be lethal, but with certain medications it can be controlled, although they have side effects we ll have to monitor closely. You can never again do…

When you hear the words naming what you have, you experience a great loss in a single moment. Its a fringe experience, and your life will be eternally divided into a before and after the diagnosis. Receiving a diagnosis for chronic illness is a shock to the system and should be dealt with accordingly, with apt professional help, for it not only affects the body, it affects the whole person and his or her emotions. It goes to the very soul. It also affects the patients family and social circles. The chronic patient and his or her family need to seek help in analyzing and processing the emotions generated by the experience of the diagnosis.