Sharing Health Worries with Friends Is Good for My Well-being
Living with sickle cell disease is not easy. It affects every area of one’s life. An important part of managing the challenges that come with the disease is having a solid support system.
I do not have any close friends with sickle cell, but I have amazing friends who help me in any way they can when it comes to my health. I appreciate them so much.
It took me a while to start sharing my health-related worries and issues with my friends. Sickle cell is an invisible disability and I was trying to protect my pride. I presumed that if my friends knew about my health challenges, they would think less of me. I could not have been more wrong.
Opening up about my health to my friends allowed me to be my true self around them. It was the best thing I could have done. My friends immediately took on the responsibility of helping me to stay as healthy as possible. They also encouraged me to blog about my health-related experiences, which has provided opportunities to educate others and to raise awareness about sickle cell.
How does sharing about my health help?
As the saying goes, “A problem shared is a problem halved.” I believe this is true. Sharing our struggles allows for feelings of relief, and might help us to find solutions to eliminate the problem.
On many occasions I’ve found that discussing an issue with a friend allowed me to understand things from a different perspective. My friends also have given me practical suggestions on how to deal with whatever is bothering me. Sometimes another set of eyes and ears are just what the doctor ordered.
Keeping things to myself can do more harm than good. Studies have shown a correlation between social isolation and loneliness and poor mental and physical health. I know firsthand how negative emotions affect me, so I do what I can to surround myself with people who positively influence my well-being.
My friends are good for my health.
Do you agree that “a problem shared is a problem halved?” Do you have a go-to person for the times when you feel low? Let me know in the comments below.
Note: Sickle Cell Anemia News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Sickle Cell Anemia News or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to sickle cell anemia.