There are some unexpected side effects of being chronically ill. Obviously, you have more doctor appointments, but, certain things pop up that you're unsure how to deal with.

1. Dating.

This is a BIG one. When do I tell him/her? Do I tell him/her sooner if this person is very serious? Will I look like a liar if I wait too long? It's something you have to disclose at some point, and it can depend on the person when you find that sweet spot. But finding the sweet spot is scary and anxiety inducing, no less how the person will respond. And this leads into our next bullet.

2. Insensitive questions.

Most people want to spread an awareness about whatever they have. The thing is, you know you're courteous - and you're not so sure about everyone else. People have said things to you and you're not sure how they can look at themselves in the mirror the next day. There's a part of you that wants to educate them and tell them their comments were outright wrong, but you also don't want to be confrontational. Its a hard place to be in, and it's even harder to navigate once you're in the middle of it.

3. Major life decisions.

Have a chronic illness? Well, it's going to be the uninvited third party in your relationship. It's going to be the unwanted life coach because you have to listen to it. It's going to try to take away what you love to do, and you need to find a compromise. It takes a while to compromise with yourself and find something that fits both you and your circumstance, but it's possible.

4. ... Minor life decisions.

Want to go for a walk later? Your body might have something to say about that. Want to see your best friend on Friday? You gotta consult with your chronic illness. On Friday morning. Like an hour before you see them.

5. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep.

It's suddenly much more coveted.

6. You realize who your true friends are.

They don't get tired of helping you. They check up on you. They can look at you and know you're having a bad day. People who can't deal with it leave your life in a huff or a slow rush, just because it's too much for them.


And that's OK. Because you know who your superstars are.