Turning the table

It feels very odd to be 'blogging' but here goes.
I have been reflecting on how my job as a therapist (speech language therapist) affects the way I feel about my ME/CFS. I spend quite a lot of my much reduced time at work, encouraging other people to talk about how they are feeling and what they want, so that I can try to help in the best way I can. But I have trouble turning the table. I think that perhaps if you are the sort of person who gets reward from feeling that you have helped someone else, in whatever small way, it can perhaps be harder to be that person who asks for help, or to feel that telling your story to others is actually a reasonable thing to do.... That perhaps other people might want to listen or at a basic level that you deserve to be listened to.

I don't know if that sounds really strange or completely normal! One of the things that made me think about this today is that I really want to tell other people about the Canary in a Coal Mine project on kickstarter, but I feel unable to tell family and friends on Facebook because I am unwell. If it was family or friends who were affected, I wouldn't feel this way. Is that weird?


It doesn't sound weird to me. I feel the same way. I think when you spend a lot of your time caring for others you tend to feel that that is your role and have a hard time stepping out of it and asking for help. Maybe it is the fear of letting people down by not being the rock that they think you are. Maybe it is the fear of losing your own identity as that person who looks after everyone else.
I have a hard time believing anyone wants to listen to my problems or that I am special enough to deserve their attention. So most of the time I don't ask.
I agree with @vamah. The people who get ME tend to be copers, strivers, helpers, and often very independent. So it's a cruel irony that we find it especially hard to ask for, or accept, help, and also have some of the greatest difficulty having our illness acknowledged. My reasons for not liking to ask for help include my independent spirit, my pride, and fear of ridicule by people who don't believe I really need the help. This fear is well-founded too, unfortunately. This fear is also a reason I fear 'boring' non-sufferers with info. I do have a poster in my window though.

Blog entry information

Last update

More entries in User Blogs