Tips for Dating a Sick Girl

Tips for Dating a Sick Girl

I did my fair share of dating before I met Kevin and as I was sitting here thinking about that I decided to write a guide for dating someone with a chronic illness. The thought occurred to me since I’ve been in and out of the hospital the last two months and Kevin has been asking me what he could do to help. Bear with me as I attempt to tackle this best I can.

These are just tips I’ve put together based on my own experiences living with Crohn’s Disease these past 17 years.

  • Ask follow up questions. It was always a red flag when I told someone I had Crohn’s Disease and they didn’t have one follow up question. It usually meant they were planning their escape.
  • Learn the signs of an impending flare-up. My appetite changes and I start to sleep a lot more. As a flare-up is coming on I will sleep as much as I can. Before I was admitted to the hospital back in October I was coming home from work and going right to bed and waking up the next day and doing the exact same thing.
  • Know what can trigger an episode/flare-up. Since Crohn’s Disease is in the gut mostly there are foods I need to avoid. Kevin knows not to take me to a salad place, it’s going to end with me ordering a pizza.
  • Understand that sometimes we need to take it easy. Sometimes a night in just watching TV is all we can handle.
  • Learn what our comfort items. I have my “sick blanket” and a heating pad and I also love a carbonated beverage when my stomach hurts. Some people try to tell me that soda can make things worse, but whatever, somehow it helps, leave me be.
  • If things get serious try to know how open we are about discussing our illness. Some people don’t want to be known as the chick with the disease. It’s not your story to tell.
  • We aren’t fragile dolls. We have active sex lives, we can enjoy things, have fun, travel. Please don’t make us feel like we are contagious. Hug us, embrace us, don’t be afraid of us. The person you’re with will let you know their limits or when they need space.
  • Sometimes there’s not much you can do except be there and trust me, that’s doing a lot. Don’t feel helpless because letting us know we aren’t alone can get us through some of the worst times.

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