This is a comment I made on an article in Zimbio, and I thought it was worth posting here on Pentimento too. --Carol
As a lifetime sufferer with fibromyalgia (I am 57), I can attest that even though there are identified "tender points", the pain can be in other places on the body too.
As I shower and shave my legs I feel the pain all up the front of both shins.
When I am at the dentist and the tech is being friendly by tapping my shoulder as we share a laugh, I am cringing with pain at what she would deem a gentle touch.
A handshake can almost bring me to my knees, but I don't dare let that happen because the muscles on my knees keep me from getting on them just to clean the tub.
My friends and neighbors think I am a social outcast because I don't drive a car. They don't know that on most nights I never get full restorative sleep, and I can bet you they wouldn't want me driving a couple tons of car anywhere near them. Some days, I can't even think clearly, and you judge me because I don't drive a car?Â
If the pain a fibromyalgia sufferer experiences showed up glowing under the skin, you would probably see many of us completely "lit".
People are more aware than they used to be. Almost everyone I know "knows someone" who has fibromyalgia.Â It is truly one of the most invisible diseases. How can you reduce the stress for a FM patient?
- Never tell them it is "all in your head".
- Don't ask if they are "over being sick". They never will be until a cure can be found.
- If he or she is actually asleep, for goodness sake, be quiet and let them sleep. It is like gold to be able to rest.
- If you have a family member who has FM, get informed. Google the condition and find quality information.
- Above all, please be understanding, kind and helpful. It really is a painful disease and very hard to endure.
More information can be found on the National Fibromyalgia AssociationÂ website.