Dating people chronic illness
I remember one dating "expert" in particular saying to keep it light on first dates: don't talk about exes or discuss emotional topics such as your mother's illness.
She advised that if something feels too big to share then you may want to consider postponing dating until after you've dealt with it.
My coming out was not a dramatic picture of me in the hospital with an IV, but an announcement that I was starting a support group for people with persistent Lyme disease, and did anyone know anyone who might want to join? In the end, I just blocked a few former students and anxiously watched that globe icon for notifications—for the tally of likes to tell me that I had done the right thing.
There weren't many, but notably one of the first likes was from a guy I went to high school with, one of the very guys I had considered blocking from seeing my post. An impression so lasting that I carried it with me a year later when I wrote him a Facebook message to see if he wanted to hang out before my move from New York back to our hometown. Because I knew he had seen that post, instead of giving him one of my vague "health reasons" explanations, I told him it's because I have Lyme disease, that alcohol and Lyme don't mix well, and that Lyme was why I was moving back to San Francisco, where my parents could help me out and where my doctor was.
I wasn't thinking too seriously about us hanging out—just a little fun before I moved away—but the minute I was standing across from him in his kitchen, I knew it was going to be much more than that. He was looking at me so intensely as I revealed this, and I was thinking, I don't remember his eyes being this blue in high school.
And then he told me that he didn't drink either because he was in outpatient rehab for drugs.
So when I finally received my diagnosis in the summer of 2014, I decided to start a support group to find validation in others who had gone through such a traumatic experience. Facebook has become a sort of coming-out place for illness, be it your pet's, your mom's, or your own.But I don't know how much longer I'm going to be sick. Dating with chronic illness is hard for sure, and there were times when I felt truly undateable. But there are many things I can offer my dates because I'm much more than my illness: I'm a great listener, a deep empath, an entertaining storyteller.Sometimes dating is a great way to get me out of my head and out of bed, even when the latter seems impossible or undesirable at best.This was not at all what I expected him to say, and it couldn't have been an easy thing to tell me.So there we were, both having revealed really private but pivotal parts of ourselves within the first five minutes.