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Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 64
   Posted Today 2:59 PM (GMT -6)   
Anyone watched the spoon theory on youtube??

I sent it to 3 of my friends so they could get a better idea on how I live my life. I only got a response from one of them, and she said she doesn't know what to say, and she didn't learn anything from it. She said all people life their lives like that.

Maybe it's just me, but I don't think most people live their lives like that, just those with medical problems.

I was hoping it would help her understand me better, but it seems it hasn't. She also has said my medical problems aren't an excuse for why I can't do certain things. I just have to push past it, as she says.

Anyone else have experience with the spoon theory and explaining it to others??

I was at a loss before sending her the video, on how to explain my life, but if she doesn't get the spoon theory, then I have NO clue how else to go about explaining it.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 2317
   Posted Today 4:42 PM (GMT -6)   
I don't think I've welcomed you yet, so welcome to HW. It definitely is tough trying to get people to understand what it's like to live with a disability. I'm not sure anything really every gets through to people other than them experiencing something for themselves. I've tried plenty of explanations & I've seen others do the same. I will say that it does get easier as you get older b/c your friends have had more life experiences and are more likely to have experienced at least some sort of short-term disabling condition.

I thought I had found the most insensitive idiotic person out there when I was first diagnosed with fluid building up around my brain causing crippling headaches & severe neurological issues and was told my some moron that he has had some "zinger headaches" at least 3-4 times per year, but he took some aspirin, thought positive thoughts and went to work because it's good to keep your mind off these things. I'm not really sure how anyone can compare a severe tension headache to blood and spinal fluid building to dangerous levels around the brain, requiring a hole to be drilled in my head, but it turns out that guy wasn't the dumbest person out there.

My friend was dx'ed at 21 with cancer. By 25, it had spread throughout her body and she was given a few weeks to live. She fought and made it nearly a year longer, but it was severe, it was a really rare form and she was getting chemo, radiation, surgery, etc. much of the time. And some dimwitted fool said that everyone has tough things, that there are days when she was so tired she almost didn't want to get out of bed, but she did.

So I think, sadly perhaps, that there are some out there who completely lack empathy, but many try to relate it to their own lives to make some sense out of it & they just haven't experienced anything so devastating. Some make even more of an effort to connect, but many don't. And while I used to resent them for it, I'm beginning to think that maybe there is so much misery already in this world that trying to grasp the horrors of disabling health conditions & to recognize that it might occur to anyone at any time might just be depressing. We need people in our lives who are upbeat & think that things can be turned around even when there is no indication that change is possible (well, I need people like that). I've just come to understand that I need to choose when I can be around those people. When I need a break & don't want pity or don't want to talk about how I'm feeling but just want people to treat me like everyone else, those naive friends can be a real blessing. And when I'm just really, really down and struggling, I have friends who have been through much worse tragedies than I have who can sit and listen and maybe share and idea or two about how to make it through to tomorrow.

I'm much more judicious about who I share my issues with than I used to be. I tend to tell most people as little as possible. I have some close friends who are the exception to that, but they really are the exception. But best of all, everyone here at HW understands what it's like to live with CP, what it's like to hear all the stupid and/or hurtful things that people say -- usually unintentionally, what it's like to feel lonely or scared or confused or to rejoice over something so simple as being able to make a pot of tea without being in horrific pain. And I'm grateful for that b/c it means that in the middle of the night, when my close friends may have finally found some much needed sleep, I can connect with compassionate souls & know that I will make it through this somehow.

Know that you are always welcome here & we do understand.


Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 16779
   Posted Today 6:04 PM (GMT -6)   
Southview I think Frances nailed it right on the head on this subject. Its a shame that people don't get it, some can't and some don't want to either. And then there are some people that has had some horrible medical situation arise and by the grace of God, high tech medicine and great drs and they get everything completely turned around, then they look at someone like us and its like well, if I can do it you can too. I think those kind are the very worst of the lot, lol. My brother is one of them, let me tell you he is like a cat with nine lives and he has lived stuff that he was not suppose to and he looks at me like you can do it too if you want to bad enough!!! Ay first it hurt me deeply when he would say that to me and one day I realized he just does not know any better because he has survived all of his odds.

All I can offer is try not to let it get to you and get you down. There are just some things most people do not understand and one of them is CP. If you slice your leg open and blood is gushing, oh yes people understand that, but CP is an invisible disease not seen by the naked eye so to speak so they don't see it. Family is very much included on the list of they don't get it too. I am very selective like Frances on who I discuss my medical with.

As for your friend, save your breath and energy and do something nice for you. Hugs.


Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 197
   Posted Today 8:51 PM (GMT -6)   
I think that Frances gave a really good explanation. Some people we meet truly are oblivious. Some are just insensitive. Some think that if you look fine, you must be fine and just making it out to be worse than it really is. And some can be truly empathetic, even if they have never experienced it for themselves. I think there are some people that never will get it, no matter what you say. With them, it is better to let it go rather than frustrate yourself trying to get them to see. Yes, as she said, everyone has to choose what they do with their time, so in that sense, if she wants to take the spoon theory on that surface level it COULD apply to everyone. But with chronic pain, fibro or chronic fatigue etc, we have to apply it to tasks that others take for granted and usually do without thinking about it, unless they have some short term illness like a cold or flu, and I feel that therein lies the difference. It is one thing to push past a pain that you know is temporary and will be gone in a few days, but you can't explain to someone who has never dealt with chronic pain what it is like to deal with it day after day, knowing it isn't going anywhere. I just avoid the subject with people I know won't or can't understand the difference.
Fibromyalgia, High BP, Migraines, anxiety, Non Celiac Gluten Intolerant
Current medications: Topamax, Maxalt, Lotrel, Wellbutrin
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