An Incurable Disease Doesn't Change The Love I Have For You

An Incurable Disease Doesn't Change The Love I Have For You

Because one day the one you love the most is fine and the next day they're not, it causes devastation you never truly recover from.

nadoty
nadoty
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Loving someone with an incurable disease is the most emotionally straining thing I have ever experienced.

My significant other and I have been together for almost six years. During the summer of 2018, we all noticed the significant changes he was going through. He had lost around fifty pounds and had a lack of appetite. We had figured something was going on, however, we didn't realize it was anything serious.

Fast forward to the Fall semester of 2018. I had visited my boyfriend and we had expressed certain concerns, such as, through the night I would try and get him to stop uncontrollably itching his legs to the point of bleeding, or that he was looking a little yellow and was exhausted all the time. After seeing his sister in November, while I was at school, she pleaded with him to go to urgent care because he did not look good. He was yellow, exhausted, and very sickly looking. We didn't realize that the urgent care visit would be the precedent of the rest of our lives.

After coming home for Thanksgiving and spending a week straight in the hospital with him, it finally set in that something was not right. Between all the vomit, getting moved for testing, the weakness, the constant calling for medications because the pain was so severe, and the almost month-long stay in the hospital, it hit me full force that something was really wrong. Words will never truly describe the emotions I was feeling, or the burden of my thoughts that I felt were too selfish to pass on anyone, so I kept them to myself.

When we finally got the diagnosis, we were surprised. PSC, otherwise known as Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis, is an incurable liver disease that affects the bile ducts which become scarred and inflamed, more likely than not lead to cirrhosis and an inevitable transplant. There was no cure, rather the only solution was a liver transplant, and even then the disease can be recurring.

I was thinking selfishly. I was torn in two. What would our future look like? Could we have children? Could we ever do the things we used to?

Loving someone with an incurable disease is a mix of emotions. There is a constant fear in the back of my mind that he is going to wake up in intense pain and have to be rushed to the hospital. There is a constant fear of every time waiting for the bi-weekly blood test results to come back, in fear that his Bilirubin spiked again or he is undergoing a flare up and needs to be hospitalized. There is a constant anxiety that one day he's going to be fine, and the next day he won't be. Even the simple things, such as laying beside one another, was a constant fear I had, due to the pain he was in every day. What if I hit him in my sleep on accident? What if I accidentally hugged a little too tightly and caused him pain?

Loving someone with an incurable disease can be a fluctuation of emotions, however, he makes it worth it.

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Understanding What It's Like To Live With An Anxiety Disorder

Having no control over your own mind is scary.
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Anxiety disorders are no fun for anyone. Most people don't understand what it's like to be someone who suffers from one. They come without warning and without reason. As I am writing this, I am awake at an ungodly hour due to this stupid battle my mind is having with itself.

Let me help those of you who do not understand what this illness is like.

At random moments, I will get this building worry and fear that something isn't right. Everything could be just perfectly fine, but my mind will trick itself into believing that something is wrong.

It will convince itself that my life is falling apart. I will worry about one thing one minute and talk 90 to nothing then start to worry about another thing. My mind constantly switches back and forth and will convince itself that things are worse than what they really are.

All the while, I'm trying so hard to calm myself down... but it is impossible.

It will send me into a depression. A depression that causes me to hate myself for being so crazy and irrational at times. This depression is the worst part. It causes me to want to space myself from the world and everyone around me. It causes me to feel alone with my illness, and it will cause me to be too terrified to talk those that are closest to me about what it is that I need from them.

I feel needy, and I'm repulsed. But I can't help it.

The hardest thing is for me to find peace with myself during the depression stage. Most times, it switches back to worry and will keep me up all night. Staying up all night causes me to feel irritable the next day, which in turn causes those around me to steer clear. Which in turn causes me to go right back into depression and battle myself for being mentally ill.

You see, there's something those of you who don't suffer from anxiety need to understand: WE CAN'T CONTROL IT.

No, it doesn't make us crazy. We don't need you to tell us that we are acting crazy. We are already well aware of this and telling us that will only make our condition worse.

It will come at the most inconvenient times. When it happens, just please be patient and understanding with us. The attack will eventually pass, and when it does, we'll be back to normal. The worst thing you could do is bring up anything we were previously worried about.

Doing so will only trigger another attack. Understand that it's you and us vs. the illness. We hate it, you hate it, we're on the same team here. The best thing you can do during an attack is to just listen, and know that there are times we need you to hold us, and times we need you to leave us alone. Know that sometimes you'll be the trigger for the attack.

Don't take it personally. And please, for the sake of humanity, don't tell us that we're overreacting, that we need to calm down, or that worrying isn't going to make anything any better. If we could stop worrying, don't you think we would have already?

Dating someone with an anxiety disorder isn't easy, at all. It requires giving that person a lot of attention that you normally wouldn't have to do. That doesn't mean the sufferer constantly needs you to be stuck up his or her butt 24/7, but it does mean that when he or she is under attack you need to be there.

If someone you love is having an anxiety attack, ask them what they need. Most of the time they know what they need from you to help make it better, but they're too scared to tell you. Let them know that you genuinely want to help in any way that you can, and be okay with it if they tell you nothing and to just listen. Get to know their illness better.

Everyone's anxiety disorder is different.

Try to understand what it's like to have absolutely no control over your mind, and be there for that person. They need you most when they feel as though they have turned on themselves.


If you or someone you know is battling an anxiety disorder, seek help.

Cover Image Credit: ankor2 / Flickr

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I'm Scared To Ask Boys To Hang Out Because Society Has Led Me To Believe That I'll Seem Desperate

Ladies, would you ask a man out?

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Let's get this all out, I'm an anxious person. I suffer from "slight" anxiety, I wouldn't say it's horrible, but I deal with it. Nerves, it's something I'm quite familiar with in life, nerves and I are friends, actually. I've dealt with "slight" anxiety for years and it has stopped me from doing many things, which I regret. My "slight" anxiety has reappeared once again in the situation involving the male gender.

I'm not going to act as I've never talked to boys before because I have and it's not the scariness things for me, but when it involves boys I like, it's a whole new situation. Once I start developing any sort of feelings for boys I like, I turn into an anxious mess. That over-thinking, can't say the right words, too scared to embarrass myself anxious mess.

Well recently, that anxious feeling mess of myself has undoubtedly come back to life in some shape or form with this one particular boy. I think it's time to dive into Aby's semi-complicated by not really complicated sort of, just being dramatic love life. So, there's this boy that I've found attractive for quite a while, it's great to admire from afar. I always knew he was there, we were friendly, and nothing really came from that until recently.

In the past month or so this boy has been giving me the most mixed signals I've ever had in my lifetime. Do you like me? Do you not? Are you flirting with me? Ae you just being friendly? I've liked many boys in my time, but I've never thought so much about what this one particular boy and what his deal is? It's been over a month and I still can't figure him or it out, so I've been thinking of doing something every girl is somewhat afraid of, asking a boy to hang out.

I know, it sounds so small and sort of dumb, but doing something like this petrifies and turns me into a nervous, anxious mess. I'll be one hundred percent honest that I want a summer fling, someone to do all those fun things together without the commitment of a boyfriend. It's the beginning of summer, which means I need to start sorting my options out right now.

Here's the issue, I want to ask him to hang out, but I'm scared to ask because I don't want to seem desperate at all. Society has led us to believe that men should be asking girls out instead of vice-versa. In all honesty, it's a bit messed up, but I've been led to believe that "guys ask girls out". So, I've always waited to be asked out because that's what society has taught me and that's what I've allowed.

Now, I'm preparing myself to ask this boy to hang out and I'm getting quite anxious, all the possibilities. What if he doesn't like me? Thinks I'm ugly? Figures out that I can't drive? Hates me? Thinks I'm annoying, oh gosh, the endless possibilities. One thing I know is that I have to try, so I'm going to be bold and ask him to hang out.

It's scary, I'm scared, but I'll never know if I don't try, which is true. Life is filled with mysteries and you won't know if you don't look, right? So, I'm going to get over my anxiety and just try, wish me luck in attempting to ask this boy to hang out.

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