Guess what? I am a martyr.

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donnaeil
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 1156
   Posted 4/17/2009 12:11 AM (GMT -7)   
Wednesday at lunch I received a compliment. "Donna, I think you are amazing. You are in a wheelchair and yet you come to the pool every day. More often than we do )the folks who do not live with pain and have fibro).

"And, you get there by bus even. That is amazing."

Ugh, these folks who never reared children as single parents, did not struggle to acquire degrees through adversity, never ran a company, have absolutely idea of what I have accomplished in life, tick me off.

I found the compliments condescending. I am more than a woman who performs amazing feats in a wheelchair. I have been using public transportation since childhood in nyc.

It seem so belittling. As if I have not been taken seriously as an equal. Grrr. this reminds me of the earlier days facing discrimination. Sheeshe.

All the while, no reference to working trough pain was mentioned. Even that should not make me a martyr.


Donnaeil

pattipanda
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 1014
   Posted 4/17/2009 3:00 AM (GMT -7)   

Oh I hear ya, Donnaeil!!

I'm sure the commentary was well indended but people just don't "get it" do they?  If they did they'd react a lot differently, at least I should hope that they would.  The pain aspect of our problems seems to be the thing that the people in my life don't understand. 

I keep looking around websites to see if anything is going to be going on in my area regarding FMS Awareness Day (May 15th).  But so far nothing.  I think I'm going to have to be the one around here to get something going.

As I've said many times.. these people are most likely uneducated in the matters of fibro.  And for them, ignorence is bliss.  Sad but true. shakehead Hugs,


Patti
 
Fibormyalgia, 4x Lyme Disease Survivor, Depression, Anxiety Disorder, Dyslexia, 2 Lumbar Disk Herniations, Allergies, Bi-lateral Carpal Tunnel, Psoriasis. 
Meds = Elavil, Tramadol, Xanax, Lipitor
"Shoot for the moon, even if you miss, you'll land among the stars" - author unknown


Statgeek
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Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 1495
   Posted 4/17/2009 9:14 AM (GMT -7)   
Donna,
I am amazed at all the things you have done! I got a degree through adversity, too. long story. If you want to check out some powerful and inspiring art, look up axis dance . com. They are dancers with and without disabilities. They do expressive dance and their work is absolutely beautiful. The choreographers have great talent. I got to be in a workshop with them through my dance for all bodies and abilities class a couple of years ago and went and saw a performance not too long ago. If I didn't live so far away from them, I would definitely go to their classes.
Sue

Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17101
   Posted 4/17/2009 9:41 AM (GMT -7)   

You know, Donnaeil, I don't think your friends meant it that way.  Gee, I love to get compliments from people.  I think that shows they are aware of what I go through to do the things I do or they wouldn't say anything.  Also, to me it shows that they really care about me, too.  I, too, have been told I'm amazing and it sure feels good to hear that.  It's better than struggling through life being ignored by everyone!  LOL

Sherrine


Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


Jeannie143
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 6056
   Posted 4/17/2009 9:46 AM (GMT -7)   
Some people just don't know how to phrase things. I believe this person honestly admires you so please don't feel badly. I'd rather hear a backhanded compliment than be ignored!
~ Jeannie, Forum Moderator/Diabetes & Fibromyalgia
I know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish that He didn't trust me so much. ~Mother Teresa

"People are like stained glass windows: They sparkle and shine when the sun's out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is light within."- Elizabeth Kubler-Ross


KerriH
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 316
   Posted 4/17/2009 4:35 PM (GMT -7)   

When I first read your post, I had a tough time understanding why what they said upset you so much.  They were simply telling another person they admire that they admired them and I didn't see how that was condescending. 

Then, I realized that what you might be saying....are you saying that you find your accomplishments of getting down to the pool in a wheelchair & w/ Fibro less amazing than the other things you have accomplished in your life?  That a person who walked down to the pool, who didn't have a chronic condition, should not be admired for getting their butts in the pool and working out when many of us find it difficult to motivate ourselves to do the same?

I'm not criticizing your post, just trying to understand where you are coming from.

 


Kerri

Fibromyalgia since 2007

"Tragedy is a tool for the living to gain wisdom, not a guide by which to live."
Robert F. Kennedy 

 



getting by
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 40598
   Posted 4/17/2009 6:45 PM (GMT -7)   
I really don't think that they meant anything bad by what they said. They do not know how much you have accomplished in your life. I think that they meant well, not to belittle you. So please don't feel badly about this. They probably mean that if they were in your situation, they probably wouldn't be able to do nearly as much as you have done.

I am not in a wheel chair, but I couldn't manage my own business when fibromyalgia kicked in. I haven't gone to school like you have. It makes me feel a little sorry for myself. I should have accomplished much more than I have. But I try not to dwell on that. I take life one day at a time. And work on the different things that I have to confront daily. Will I get out of bed tomorrow? I don't know. But I will cross that road when I get to it.
 
I honestly don't think you are playing the martyr at all.

Best wishes for you to have a wonderful day.

Hugs, Karen


  Moderator-Depression and fibromyalgia
 
fibromyalgia, Chronic fatigue, depression,allergies

Post Edited (getting by) : 4/17/2009 7:53:11 PM (GMT-6)


donnaeil
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 1156
   Posted 4/17/2009 11:05 PM (GMT -7)   
I know this is difficult to understand about how I think of this. On the one hand, it is a compliment but, it just felt belittling.

One point I want to make is, all of us on this board feel more pain than most people. We awaken everyday because we have to and not because we are doing the phenomenal.

I guess that I have lost so much with this condition and having to be a single parent.

Oh well, this feeling is something I will have to get past. I think that people do not do things because life may just be too easy for them. I have to exercise often. They have the choice to not do so.

It is difficult to exercise every day no matter what our physical conditions are. Maybe is was a compliment.

I do no that disabled people do not like receiving compliments that turn them into martyrs. I have spotted this perspective on other message boards.

Donnaeil

Donnaeil

lost in philly
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 243
   Posted 4/18/2009 12:39 PM (GMT -7)   
I too wish that I could walk around with a sign that said, "Graduated cum laude" or a list of all my accomplishments...but instead I walk around with this cane and usually a pretty pronounced limp and that is what people see and that is what they base their judgments on.
I am no longer afforded the same opportunity that healthy people give to other healthy (i.e. normal) people...and that is the opportunity to project "who" I want to be seen as-- "Tracee, the single mom that raised her daughter on her own, put herself through night school and graduated cum laude". No. I am. we are, no longer anonymous. The cane, the wheelchair, that walker are projecting thoughts and stereotypes long before I am allowed to introduce myself. Suddenly and without my permission, I have become--"You know that poor, disabled girl with the cane? The sick one? She is so brave." (And on the scale of all things relative...knock on wood, I could be worse!)
This illness teaches you alot about people and I am often reminded why I drilled it into my daughter that a person's "book cover" very, very rarely matched what was inside.
lost in philly

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Fibro, Endo, Migraines, Asthma, CFS

Topamax, Morphine, Cymbalta, Crestor, Resoril, Loestrin, Treximet

B12, Magnesium, Melatonin, Omega3


getting by
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 40598
   Posted 4/18/2009 7:52 AM (GMT -7)   
I am not in a wheel chair, nor do I use a cane, I look normal. But people still don't know how much I struggle every day. with the constant pain and fatigue, and of course the fibro fog. People think I can do everything that they do. Well, I can't. So I need to carry a sign too, only mine will say, 'don't judge a book by it's cover, I am lucky that I got out of bed today.'

So I guess we all have that problem. I wish it were different, but it isn't. We are just lucky to have eachother to talk to. I am so happy that I found this forum.

You all have a great day today.

Hugs, Karen
  Moderator-Depression and fibromyalgia
 
fibromyalgia, Chronic fatigue, depression,allergies

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