Friendship is a two way thing. So what happens when one party becomes unwell & is often too poorly to keep in touch?

Something that has always seemed controversial to some people around me, is that I use social media yet claim to be too unwell to message them. This was something I put to the little community we have here a few years ago. And then I became too unwell to put the responses into a post. I’m still working on it…

Social media allows me to update everyone in my life in one go; saving more energy and cognitive exertion than I can explain. But of course that’s a one way friendship. They know about my life but I haven’t asked about theirs for awhile; I haven’t liked their social media posts because I can’t always concentrate enough to see them.

In more recent years, we have noticed a decline in my short-term memory. If I don’t physically write down important dates that my friends have told me, then I will forget to wish them well. So many friends going back to work after maternity leave, or starting a new job, or attending medical appointments, or social care reviews. And I forget them all if I don’t write them on my own calendar.

In a more extreme way, I am having to sometimes jot down key information from a friend’s text message so that I can form a reply without forgetting what it is we’re messaging about. It’s frustrating; the inability to hold any information.

I’m currently having to sit with some uncomfortable feelings about how my illhealth has affected my ability to be a good friend.

And then add in the fact that I’m still practicing something akin to shielding, & so even when I am well enough to meet-up I can’t.

This post isn’t for you to stroke my ego. I’m sharing it because I imagine others feel that their illhealth has affected their abilities to be the friend they want to be too.

Many people lose friends along the way as patience and understanding drop away over time. But what about when that isn’t the case? When the friends have stayed & done their best but shielding & being too unwell to even send a text play a part. Don’t they deserve a more balanced relationship than the one I can give them?

I haven’t worked out the answers yet.

In some ways I have become quite good at separating my Self from the M.E. And therefore don’t blame myself for the changes that happen as a result of my illhealth. But in other ways I can’t seem to master it.

Published by Anna Redshaw

Blogging about life in the slow lane with an invisible, chronic illness. I wasn't always a sick chick so this is somewhat of a life changing experience!

%d bloggers like this: