So much is written about the general struggle of fibromyalgia, but not much is written about telling your children that you have it.
If the child is old enough, most doctors believe it’s best to be honest and straightforward about illness, but doing it in a way that doesn’t frighten. That means you don’t have to go into the gory details of how fibromyalgia is causing you such pain.
But you can tell them that you have a condition–or “problem”, depending on what they understand better— called fibromyalgia, and it can’t be seen because it’s on the inside. Tell them it requires you to take more breaks than other parents, and it also means that there will be times you need to sleep more or have less noise in the house.
Asking children to be part of helping you around the house makes them feel trusted with a special job and gives them a sense of pride. You can also include them in your activities like stretching or join them for time on the playground in light activities. They will enjoy sharing this time with you.
If they are teenagers, chances are they will look up fibromyalgia on the internet or ask much more involved questions. You should gauge how much you want to reveal based on their level of maturity. Let them know the condition is chronic, but not life threatening.
Fibromyalgia doesn’t need to cause a rift with your children.
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