Ways to Strengthen Relationships with RA | Rheumatoid Arthritis Warrior

Ways to Strengthen Relationships with RA

Strategies to strengthen relationships with rheumatoid arthritis

Over the past decade, readers have commented and emailed me many times about their relationships with rheumatoid arthritis. Both relationships with significant others and with other family members, as well as friendships can be strained by the effects of RA. We’ve often talked about how others have trouble understanding the invisible symptoms of rheumatoid disease. The divorce rate is higher with RA and the disease can test other relationships as well. A diagnosis of RA can add pressure in significant areas like schedules, employment and finances that can broadly affect relationships.

Healthgrades asked me to write about strategies for people with RA to strengthen relationships. I know readers will enjoy this brief article on ways to ensure that relationships for people living with RD are as strong as possible.

Strengthening Relationships with Rheumatoid Arthritis

Strengthening relationships with rheumatoid arthritisRheumatoid arthritis (RA) and relationships is not the first thing one learns about managing the illness. But living with a painful progressive disease like RA does place extra stress on your relationships. Over the years, I’ve seen how RA strains both friendships and marriages. The divorce rate is higher with RA. And yet I have seen several marriages become firmly cemented through the process of managing RA. What kinds of things do people do to strengthen their relationships while living with RA?

How to strengthen a relationship when RA plays a part:

1.      Bring your partner with you to a medical appointment, such as an infusion treatment. This is an opportunity to see and learn more about the disease and appreciate it’s not something in your head.

2.      Share a blog post link or a social media page where you find support. They’ll learn by hearing from others with similar experiences to yours.

Click here to read the entire article on Healthgrades.

Kelly O'Neill Young

Kelly O'Neill (formerly Kelly Young) has worked over 10 years as an advocate helping patients to be better informed and have a greater voice in their healthcare. She is the author of the best-selling book Rheumatoid Arthritis Unmasked: 10 Dangers of Rheumatoid Disease. Kelly received national acknowledgement with the 2011 WebMD Health Hero award. She is the president of the Rheumatoid Patient Foundation. Through her writing and speaking, she builds a more accurate awareness of rheumatoid disease (RD) aka rheumatoid arthritis (RA) geared toward the public and medical community; creates ways to empower patients to advocate for improved diagnosis and treatment; and brings recognition and visibility to the RA patient journey. In addition to RA Warrior, she writes periodically for newsletters, magazines, and websites. There are over 60,000 connections of her highly interactive Facebook page. You can also connect with Kelly by on Twitter or YouTube, or LinkedIn. She created the hashtag: #rheum. Kelly is a mother of five, longtime home-schooler, NASA enthusiast, and NFL fan. She has lived over thirteen years with unrelenting RD. See also https:/rawarrior.com/kelly-young-press/

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3 thoughts on “Ways to Strengthen Relationships with RA

  • February 19, 2020 at 5:45 pm
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    Due to the pain, fatigue, and numerous other symptoms of my RD, our sex life was basically non-existent. My husband used this as an excuse to go outside our marriage for sex. We are still together, since I can’t work and rely on his income, but the marriage is over.

    Reply
  • February 20, 2020 at 7:14 am
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    hi! such an interesting topic! unfortunately i have no access to the healthgrades website from greece!! love

    Reply
    • February 20, 2020 at 1:02 pm
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      Hi Francis. I tried it out from a couple devices this a.m. and I got a page saying it was unavailable a couple times. I’m not sure if it’s just a glitch or not, when I tried again, I got the page to load. I guess it’s possible that your country or internet provider has rules against it, but that doesn’t seem right. I’m sorry. I will email you a copy of the text.

      Reply
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