Is it realistic for a single parent to recover or improve?

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Hi - I am a single parent with three lively children and my own business. I have tried everything and have learnt to manage symptoms etc but have not made a breakthrough. It seems one of the main things needed for the body to recover from ME/CFS is to be in a 'healing state'. Even though most aspects of my illness are sorted out - i.e diet and supplements, looking after myself etc - it is virtually impossible to be in a 'healing state' long enough to see any real progress with the kids around.
There are always very stressful unavoidable situations which put you into a crash or PEM.
Realistically will I need to wait until they are older or have left home to possibly get my life back?
Has any one on their own with kids and work managed to make significant progress?

thanks for all your help :)
 

Jyoti

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Has any one on their own with kids and work managed to make significant progress?
Such a great question. One of the things I find so difficult about trying to heal when I am always 'on call' for something or other, is that I can take care of all the 'doing' as it seems you have--diet, supplements, etc.--but the not-doing is so much harder. How does one 'not-do' with kids and a business?

For most of us that part is at least--if not more-- important than all the active protocols and life changes we undertake to improve our health. And it is unobtainable so long as we try to be our pre-ME/CFS selves. I find myself in that bind often. I respond to a situation thinking--this is what I do in this kind of circumstance. But then of course, *I* am not quite the same person I once was. I would of course step up to help someone who needs me, who could benefit from my time and attention, whether it is a simple thing like a ride or major offering of my life-force. Or harder still....something I committed to doing and now feel I cannot. I fall into that hole all the time.

Since I got sick, I do at least some of those things at my peril and I pay disproportionately for those impulses. So...saying 'no' has become another one of the things I am trying to get better at. Even with my kids. Which is especially painful. I would add as well that kids who grow up with a health-challenged parent have some difficulties, but the circumstances can, if handled well, contribute to stronger more resilient adults. Not saying I have that covered, but I have seen it.....
 
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Jyoti

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On a more practical note: over time I have developed a protocol for rest. I can't rest during the day at all. It just doesn't happen unless I am bedridden by PEM. So...to avoid that, I made a commitment to myself to take one day a week completely off. You might not be in a position to do that @zoob, but even a half day helps. Can your kids go somewhere else for a few hours? (I know that right now, with Covid, it is ridiculously difficult to pull this off, but it is still worth asking.)

I used to get every other weekend to myself and I used one day of that to just lie in bed and rest both body and brain. Now I have to facilitate that with my kid around, but I do my best to take a day each week and even if I feel like a walk or am up to reading something more difficult--I don't. I have to force myself sometimes because it feels so good to engage and accomplish. Particularly something 'just for me.'

But I found that if I resisted the urge to catch up or reach out, just gave myself the time to rest on all levels it helped me maintain my own level of severity and not get worse. Which, while we would all love to get better, is a lot better than getting worse!
 

percyval577

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Realistically will I need to wait until they are older or have left home to possibly get my life back?
I think, the typical answer is: even then not.


The good thing from this answer though might be that it might do no difference, as you also have figured out influences.
 

Judee

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So I think this is a very difficult situation. Up until recently I was the only caregiver of a family member. She passed away in January so I do not have as much caregiving to do but still a lot of loose ends to take care of as well as the emotional situation.

I read this the other day. It would be really hard to implement I think while trying to care for others however, you might get some tips (like that 2-minute rule) that you could integrate into your day. https://www.healthrising.org/blog/2...art-rate-monitoring-chronic-fatigue-syndrome/

Of course, she does end up saying she had a baby and that basically threw everything out the window. You could possibly put some comments there though. Sometimes I think the person in the article will respond. She might be able to offer some suggestions on how she is coping now with the extra responsibilities.

Edit: plus maybe people have added tips in the comments.
 

Wishful

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It seems one of the main things needed for the body to recover from ME/CFS is to be in a 'healing state'.
I wouldn't consider that a dependable 'treatment'. You might reduce additional severity of symptoms by resting a lot, but, sadly, from what I've read and experienced, resting won't make ME go away. :(

What is important for a PWME with demands for activities is to figure out what activities make your ME worse, and to what degree. Then you can decide which tasks are worth doing yourself, and which you really need to outsource. For example, if you know that washing your home's windows will make you bedridden for two weeks, it might be worth paying someone else to do it.

Alternatively, you can change your attitude about dirty windows instead. :D
 

livinglighter

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Hi - I am a single parent with three lively children and my own business. I have tried everything and have learnt to manage symptoms etc but have not made a breakthrough. It seems one of the main things needed for the body to recover from ME/CFS is to be in a 'healing state'. Even though most aspects of my illness are sorted out - i.e diet and supplements, looking after myself etc - it is virtually impossible to be in a 'healing state' long enough to see any real progress with the kids around.
There are always very stressful unavoidable situations which put you into a crash or PEM.
Realistically will I need to wait until they are older or have left home to possibly get my life back?
Has any one on their own with kids and work managed to make significant progress?

thanks for all your help :)
Hi Zoob,

PEM is a sign that there is a neurological underpinning of your CFS/ME and it is linked to conditions such as POTS. If that is the case then achieving a healing state will require treatment for it.

https://christinagracehutson.com/blog/what-is-pots-dysautonomia

https://forums.phoenixrising.me/thr...-treatments-for-your-physical-symptoms.83150/