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Thread: When should I tell him about my health issues?

  1. #1
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    When should I tell him about my health issues?

    I have been suffering with a chronic health issue for 11 years now. Although I am slowly making progress, I still struggle with pain and fatigue. I am on medication which makes me very sleepy and afternoons are sometimes the worst time for me.
    Having said that, I still am looking for that special someone and have lost two boyfriends due to my illness. The last guy seemed very sympathetic and helped me so much by driving me to my appts that were 3 hours away and giving space when I needed it. Eventually, it became too much for him. I was very clear about my health issues upfront before we even met., so he knew what he was getting into.
    Right now, I am focusing all my efforts and energy into improving my health, but would like to know what to say or how much to divulge about my health should I meet a real nice guy that I would like to date. Should I be totally and completely honest on the date or on the phone? Or let him in and not divulge too much info and see if he is up for such a challenge. I am so conflicted about this....I would welcome you thoughts and insights!

  2. #2
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    How old are you - or at least what age range are you in?
    What kind of "space" do you need from someone when you have health flare ups. Do you insist on no contact for weeks? What exactly does that look like?
    If you are 35 and under, does this health condition make it impossible or not advised to have children? Will this condition shorten your life? Is this condition something that you will eventually be cured from?

    I think that you easily fell into the trap of making a boyfriend a caregiver. I would before dating get things in place where you don't have to rely on a boyfriend -- arrange to spend the night when you go to an appointment 3 hours away so you can drive yourself or have a relative agree to help you. If you are sleepy in the afternoons -- are you okay in the evening for dates? Or are you a mornings only person. THere are people who work afternoons - and go in at 2 or 3 or 4 and it wouldn't bother them that you aren't good in the afternoons.

  3. #3
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    I would tell the person ASAP if it will affect how often you can see the person and whether you need to frequently cancel/reschedule plans. Also if the person likes to be active/athletic he'd probably want to know if you can;t.

    I cannot agree more with abitbroken- you need to have caregivers other than a boyfriend. That should be for a total life/death emergency only.

  4. #4
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    I am 61. I typically need afternoons for myself to nap, as the medication makes me sleepy and helps me cope with the pain. I am fine in the mornings and evenings. I have a very unusual illness and seeing a specialist for treatments. But some days are body slamming days and I never know when they will occur. I have difficulty driving myself because of the fatigue and if I am driving when I have to take my medication which causes sedation, I don't want to put anyone in danger including myself. I am also a full time caregiver which also puts me in a difficult situation because I am the only person who can care for my ailing 91 year old father. It makes dating very difficult, but sick people want to be loved too! I don't let this illness define me....I am still Sue, but with an illness. I can get around well, take my dad to his appts, clean house, prepare light meals, dispense medicine, laundry, grocery shop and more...I just find dating difficult when my guy would like to spend all day together and I need a nap. No, it is not that serious, my condition. I am making baby steps, it is very slow, but still baby steps.....

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member ThatwasThen's Avatar
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    I was very clear about my health issues upfront before we even met., so he knew what he was getting into.
    It's one thing to THINK you'll be able to cope with someone's disability. It's quite another when the reality hits. Can I ask how you get to your appointments and do the things that you expected this last guy to do when you don't have anyone in your life?

    It also came to my mind that you are looking for someone to rescue you and be YOUR caretaker while you are your fathers caregiver. There is a subtle difference between the two terms.

    I'd be upfront about your situation as you were with the gentleman that couldn't handle the reality and if he wants to go forth, don't get yourself too involved emotionally until it's clear that he is okay with your needs.

  7. #6
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    I do have other people in my life that can drive me to my appts. I would like to be married again someday, but not just anyone. I don't like the word rescued, because I don't see it that way. I can take care of my daily needs, and care for my dad, but my biggest issue is the driving as I never know how I am going to feel from way day to the next. Sick people want to be loved for who they are, just like healthy people. The only difference is, I am still Sue, but with an illness. I know it is a challenge for anyone to undertake, especially because I can't give them a time frame.

  8. #7
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    Tell him asap

  9. #8
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    I'd tell him because if you don't he will feel cheated like you were hiding something

  10. #9
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    I am chronically ill, which I developed in the last 10 years. I totally get you. It makes life hard.

  11. #10
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    I am also chronically ill. And my disorder makes things like going out to dinner difficult because I almost always have to run to the bathroom immediately or soon after eating to go #2. And not just a simple, normal #2 either, but a loud, huge #2. Not something you want to talk about on a first date.

    My illness was just about the only thing my most recent ex was decent about. I ended up badly scarred after surgery and, although he was advised (right in front of me) by his best friend to dump me because he would never tolerate a "scarred" woman, he stayed with me and even cared for me when I wasn't feeling well. Well, until he dumped me for someone else, but I'm sure my illness wasn't a factor.

    I haven't really dated since then. Haven't even tried to. I'd have to be very, very comfortable with someone to have them sit there while I spend 15 minutes in the bathroom being ill in a very noticeable way.

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