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Part 3. Not Understanding the Difference Between Laziness, Leisure, and Need Prevents Care

3. Not Understanding the Difference Between Laziness, Leisure, and Need Prevents Care

No one helps, and everyone tends to be skeptical about invisible illness, because they assume laziness is more likely. Especially here in the United States, where being weak, injured, or otherwise unable to work is viewed as despicable.
If we are each the masters of our own fate, then no one should have to take care of us and nothing should be given to us for “free.”

Just try going through the social security process or trying to keep a job with an illness that leaves you unable to move or function for days, for weeks, for months.
Worse than that, many of the services disabled people need are viewed as luxuries, as leisure activities. If you’re rich or well off, it’s acceptable to get regular massages, to take vacations, to have housecleaners and in-home nannies. You might be made fun of for it, but it’s not considered unusual.
Yet when my fibro keeps me from doing basic chores or shopping or dealing with strict work schedules, I am looked upon with scorn and disbelief.
Most people have no idea what it’s like to be chronically ill. They take their health for granted. They view it through their lens instead of through our eyes.
And of course, if they did what we did – or, rather, what little we’re able to – it would be because they were being lazy or seeking out a luxury.
In-home care, service animals, and pampering activities are often necessities for people who have painful chronic illnesses. It’s the only way to lessen our symptoms and be able to have enough spoons (energy) left over to take care of ourselves.
We are not and never will be healthy.
But we’d like to get as close as we can. That involves those services and relaxation activities that everyone else takes for granted. Because while we have some “good days,” that doesn’t mean we’re actually feeling better.
Which actually leads right into the next problem.

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