Are You A Victim Of A Chronic Illness?
The question “Are you a Victim of a Chronic Illness?” loudly lingered within me as I read a post from my Sheehan’s Syndrome online support group. The Sheehan’s online support group is a phenomenal group of women who live with the chronic illness Sheehan’s Syndrome. The group consists of caring, knowledge, wise and supportive women who struggle with the mayhem of living with the chronic disease Sheehan’s Syndrome.
I am not always able to participate online with the group but I try to read the post threads. The posts from the Sheehan’s Syndrome online group are usually bittersweet. Most of the posts are a reminder of the constant life struggles with an invisible disease. My heart went out to one Sheehan’s Syndrome member with a sick child and another member posted a comment that made me stop and read the post thread again.
The summary of the thread of posts went something along these lines: one member was upset, frustrated and had asked other members about their pituitary symptoms. She referred to people who have Sheehan’s Syndrome and Cushing’s Syndrome as victims (please note, she considered herself a victim.) Another member replied to her post: “Why are we referring to ourselves as “victims? I for one am not – nor will I refer to myself – as a victim. I think being a “victim” is demoralizing. I simply have
Another member replied to her post: “Why are we referring to ourselves as “victims? I for one am not – nor will I refer to myself – as a victim. I think being a “victim” is demoralizing. I simply have Sheehans – I could have a number of different challenges to my life, but I have Sheehan’s Syndrome.”
The woman who wrote that being a victim is demoralizing is a well-educated, intelligent, positive and caring lady. She has a wonderful attitude but I had a difficult time with her statement. My first reaction was to screamed, “ Hello, of course I am a victim.” Then I think became curious about the how the word, “ Victim “ is defined in the dictionary. I looked up the word, “Victim” in numerous dictionary. All the definitions were similar but by default I have chosen to post the Oxford Dictionary definition of,
Then I think became curious about the how the word, “ Victim “ is defined in the dictionary. I looked up the word, “Victim” in numerous dictionary. All the definitions were similar but by default I have chosen to post the Oxford Dictionary definition of, victim:
- a person harmed, injured, or killed as a result of a crime, accident, or other event or action.
- victims of domestic violence earthquake victims a person who is tricked or duped.
- the victim of a hoax a person who has come to feel helpless and passive in the face of misfortune or ill-treatment.
- I saw myself as a victim [as modifier] : a victim mentality a living creature killed as a religious sacrifice: sacrificial victims for the ritual festivals.
After I read all the different definitions that described the word,” victim” I quickly concluded that I was a victim of a chronic illness. I have
I have continuous, frustration that our health care system has created many victims. I do believe that many of my fellow Sheehan Syndrome sisters were the result of medical accidents.
Many of my Sheehan Syndrome sisters, including myself, feel helpless and passive in the face of misfortune or ill-treatment. I commend the talented, wise and amazing individuals that given so much to the medical field. Yet, I quickly realize that when you have a rare disease finding the correct medical treatment can cause an enormous amount of anxiousness, frustration and sadness. The costs of medical specialists, tests and medications are enough to make the strongest person with a chronic illness feel like a victim.
The title of this post reads, Are You A Victim of a Chronic Illness? I can immediately answer, “Yes” this HypoGal with Sheehan’s Syndrome feels like a victim.
One way or another, I do believe that most of us are victims in life. I do not believe it is demoralizing being a victim. I believe it is demoralizing being a victim if you are not able to have a voice.
I am fortunate that I have found my voice through my HypoGal website and HypoGal blog. The word ,victim, it is so subjective with so many different facets of gray areas. So, do you think you are a victim of a chronic illness?
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