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Discussing Fibromyalgia With
Your Loved Ones

Understanding Fibromyalgia Pain—for the Whole Family

As you struggle to come to terms with your condition, your family and friends do, too. Missed activities aren’t just hard on you. And it’s never easy to see a loved one in pain.

Education is important. The more your loved ones understand fibromyalgia, the more supportive they might be. For example, people with fibromyalgia may have problems with their memory (sometimes called fibro fog). If this is true for you, explain to your loved ones that you care about what they tell you. But fibro fog is a common fibromyalgia problem.

You may want to share sections of with your loved ones. This may help them better understand fibromyalgia—and what you are going through. Some key areas to share might be:

Communication is important too. You need to be aware of how your illness is affecting your family and friends. How are they coping? How can you help them?

The best way to find out? Ask.

Be Open With Your Loved Ones About Your Fibromyalgia Symptoms

Communication works both ways. You probably don’t want to be seen as a “complainer.” Many fibromyalgia sufferers try to put on a happy face.

But in order to let your loved ones help you, they need to know what kinds of things might make your symptoms worse. The following list might help you get this conversation started.

In a survey conducted by the National Fibromyalgia Association, people with fibromyalgia reported that the following factors aggravated their symptoms.

Stressor Percentage of people who said this stressor

You Are Working Toward the Same Goals

You want to feel good. You want to get back to life. Your family and friends want that too. The journey to feeling better may not be direct or easy. But the fact is your loved ones’ support will help you greatly along the way.

“My family still tries to take care of me. But they are happier with me
getting up and doing things with them, like going outside and walking
with the kids, or playing with them.“

Read LaFreeia’s fibromyalgia story