People want to know about your illness, so they ask you. You explain it, but they still refuse to believe you.
You think, ‘You just asked me and I just told you.’
They are thinking, ‘But they look OK on the outside.’
“The truth is, no one really knows what the illness or injury has damaged. We don’t know what is going on, on the inside. But we need to believe them,” says Wayne Connell, founder and president of the Invisible Disabilities Association .
Wayne shares seven points about invisible disabilities and how caregivers, family, and friends can be a source of support at the Invisible Becoming Visible Live Conference, held in November 2016. Wayne’s wife, Sherri lives with debilitating Progressive Multiple Sclerosis, Chronic Late Lyme Disease, and Chemical Injury. Together, the two of them have made it their life’s mission to help other’s cope with the challenges of living with invisible disabilities.
People battling various mild to severe debilitating conditions are often told they don’t look sick or in pain. Because others cannot see their symptoms of fatigue, cognitive dysfunctions, mental disorders or pain, they often do not believe the symptoms are real or they think the person must be lazy or exaggerating.
Contending with symptoms others cannot see, doctor appointments, therapies, medical bills, and losses can be overwhelming enough without also battling for the support of friends and family.
Caregivers Learn How to Support Loved Ones at the Invisible Becoming Visible Live Conference on their Journey to Becoming Invisible No More
Believing is the most important thing we can do. When a loved one says they are sick or in pain, believe. Just because we can’t see what they are battling on the inside, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. In fact, belief, validation, and support can give a friend or family member the strength they need to continue the fight!
Invisible No More® is a campaign launched by Invisible Disabilities Association to bring awareness to invisible disability challenges. It does so through educating friends and family, and supporting those living with debilitating conditions.
Invisible No More shines a light on what people living with disabilities contend with every day. It also highlights their incredible perseverance and courage. When friends and family watch these stories, we hope they realize their loved one is just as amazing.
Thank you to the Chiari & Syringomyelia Foundation (CSF) for hosting and recording the Invisible Becoming Visible Live Conference.