Dating with chronic illness

Having a chronic illness such as diabetes, arthritis, or multiple sclerosis can take a toll on even the best relationship.

The partner who's sick may not feel the way he or she did before the illness.

Dating should be fun and we should look forward to future possibilities.

For the past few days I’ve been thinking about dating in the context of chronic illnesses such as MS.

Studies show that marriages in which one spouse has a chronic illness are more likely to fail if the spouses are young.

And spouses who are caregivers are six times more likely to be depressed than spouses who do not need to be caregivers.

And the person who's not sick may not know how to handle the changes.

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Sure, there’s lots of tablets to take round with us, sometimes trips get cut short or cancelled because she’s in too much pain or her body physically doesn’t have the strength to do some of the things we plan, but isn’t a relationship about the emotions and feelings you have between you?

Ruth loved it when one day I came in to see her and brought her a teaspoon, the extra spoon she needed to give me a hug.

It’s not fair, and most importantly not true for someone with a chronic illness to think that they’re not good enough to be with somebody who is medically fit and well.

It may have only been a couple of months that I’ve been in a relationship with Ruth, but it’s been the best couple of months of my life so far. If you’re reading this you’ve probably found her website, and understand a little bit about her illness, or to be more precise her illnesses.

Friends and family have supported my decision to be in a relationship with her, but it doesn’t stop them asking me if I’m sure I’m making the right decision going out with someone who is poorly. When I write this post I will refer to Ruth, because she is the person that I’m in a relationship with.

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