If you are married to, friends with, doctor to, nurse to, parent of, sibling to, child of or any of the other many titles a person can have, a chronic pain sufferer please do me a favor don’t minimize their pain because you don’t understand it or know exactly the right words to say. Do me an even bigger solid and realize the following:
- They wake up daily when they want to do anything but.
- They know most of the time their condition won’t kill them, but that doesn’t lessen the pain.
- Just because they show up to work as much as they possibly can and do the best they can doesn’t mean they are better.
- Usually with chronic pain there is no better.
- For TN sufferers there are no magic pills or magical surgery that will fix anything.
- They know their condition isn’t as bad as (FILL IN THE BLANK) and yes they are grateful for it.
- They don’t need pity or sympathy, but they also don’t need you to pretend like it doesn’t exist.
- Often in TN there is very little hope just because there is no known cure and that reality sucks a whole lot sometimes….no wait all the time.
- They really just need your support and love and a little easing when they are having a bad flare day or minimize triggers for their pain.
My guy went to the doctor again and got the old speech. The one we have heard so many times. “This won’t kill you but, …”
And the conversation went a little like this; we can try this med or that med. But the side effects are bad and you need to think about this. At least it won’t kill you. And really it is up to you what the next step is. And at least it won’t kill you. Just think about what you want and then decide. Can you live with this pain? Do the meds help? Can you deal with the side effects? At least it won’t kill you.
Can you see the theme here? This doctor is completely respectable and kind. But the fact of the matter remains very few truly understand how to deal with TN because there is no known cure. We have decisions to make. We can sit and wait. We can take our time. He can change his meds. Or we can increase dosages.
Sometimes it is all so much.