Do You Think I Like Feeling This Way?
Last updated: January 2019
Lately, I find myself wanting to shout from the rooftops, “Do you think I LIKE feeling this way?” Do you think it is fun spending days on the couch, too fatigued to do much of anything? Yes, my psoriatic arthritis may inconvenience you, but it isn’t my fault. It isn’t fun. And I certainly do not LIKE to feel this way.
I always let people down
I’m sure my condition frustrates those who care about me. I miss commitments. Brain fog causes me to forget important things. You really never know what you are going to get each day. Some days I’m angry. Sometimes I’m just tired. No matter what, I end up letting people down.
Asking too much of others
It can be too much to ask of someone to be patient with this side of psoriatic arthritis. People don’t want to be friends with someone who is unreliable. They don’t want to have to spend extra time considering why types of “plans” would be easier for me. And they certainly don’t like to “pick up the slack,” when things still need to get done, despite my illness.
Words exchanged in anger
With this whole mix of emotions, resentment, anger, fear, pain it is easy to see how simple things can become big arguments. Heated words exchanged in anger can lead to hurt feelings and broken relationships. Those I love feel let down and angry when I have to put the needs of my health over their needs. They lash out in accusations, snide comments, or verbal jabs. And the only response I can muster is, “Do you think I like feeling this way?”
Do you think it is easy for me to watch everyone else get involved?
Do you think being stuck in bed with a flare is what I wanted to do today?
Do you think feeling terrible is some kind of badge of honor? That I asked for this?
Too many emotions tied to a physical disease
Upon self-reflection, it is very clear that this response is rooted in anger. Anger at their accusatory tones. Anger at myself for feeling too weak to fight back. Frustrated that no one seems to understand what living with this is really like, day to day. Beaten down by the disease that has changed my life so much.
- I despise being stuck on the couch with a flare.
- I loathe the fact that there are so many days that I don’t even get to a single thing on my to-do list.
- I detest the endless parade of side effects, doctor appointments, and canceled plans.
You think, “Oh gee, it must be so hard lying in bed watching Netflix all day.”
But you know what? YES. It IS hard.
It is hard to feel like life is going on all around you and you are powerless.
It is hard to feel like a burden.
It is hard to feel like a parent who will never be good enough, a spouse who can’t keep up.
Do you think I like feeling this way?
Has PsA changed how you think about sex and intimacy?
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