This isn’t the normal post that I publish on here, my relationship is a rather private thing that I don’t always talk about. But when I started seeing posts about this, I just knew that I had to have my say. As someone who battles a number of chronic illnesses, I can tell you for a certainty that successful relationships are possible.
I first saw this on Instagram, when @chronically.ams posted about it. If you don’t already you really should go and check out her YouTube and Instagram, she is a fellow zebra that is just amazingly inspiring.
‘100 out of 100 relationships that involve caregiving fail’ – Dr Phil
I have been with my partner through the major decline of my health, and we are in the process now of moving out to our very own home.
During our time together he has had to rush my to A&E, visit me on bed rest during my two and a half month stretch of infections, and take me to countless hospital appointments.
He’s been by my side when I was blacking out cold and losing hour long chunks of my memory.
He has learnt how to sort my medications for me, how to strap unstable joints, and even how to do my hair for the days when my hands just wont work.
Now I would count much of that as ‘caregiving’, and we are most certainly in a relationship. And yet, it is not failing?
I wouldn’t go as far as to say that it makes us stronger, because I don’t feel that it makes a difference. It is something that has been part of my life for a long time, and he knows no different. We have learned about things as they’ve come up together, and its just part of who we are.
But apart from this, if you take chronic illness out of the situation, isn’t caregiving all a part of any healthy relationship?
My partner doesn’t have any chronic illnesses, and yet I still care for him. I often cook, do the laundry, and am there for him when he needs to talk through his day. We regularly have phone calls on his way home from work when he just needs to off load, or if something with his daughter is worrying him.
Relationships are a two way street, you both care for each other in various different ways no matter whether there is chronic illness involved, just because you care for those you love.
I would love to hear what your thoughts are with this. Do you have a chronic illness that effects your relationship? Do you think caring puts a burden on a relationship?