Am I too sensitive?

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 2082
   Posted 10/5/2007 9:35 AM (GMT -7)   
To preface this, I've been dealing with my usual arthritis flare that hits in the fall, and this week has really been painful.  It could be worse, I know.
Anyway, a friend calls me up Tuesday to remind me of a film showing she set up at church.  I had already told her Sunday when she asked me about it that I probably wouldn't be able to make it.  Again, I told her that I most likely wouldn't be able to come.  When pressed, I told her that I have trouble sitting for long periods due to arthritis and frankly, sitting on my hiney has been really painful due to nerve damage and disease at my anastomosis, which is at my rectum.  Sitting in church is a challenge, and at home I'm either standing or lounging most of the time to avoid it.  I also told her that I'm really worn out in the evenings and don't usually go anywhere at night unless I'm forced due to that problem, plus the medications I take in the early evening are sedating.
She then proceeds to ask me what I take, and tells me I'm taking too much (which I take very low doses as my doctor prescribed: Neurontin 300mg, Elavil 20mg, and Talwin 25mg-twice daily).  She grills me about my diet and tells me how I shoud be eating, tells me what supplements I need to take, and about one home remedy that she knows would stop my pain and spasming.  The main supplement that she mentioned I've taken before and had to stop because I was having chest pains from it.  She told me I needed to try it again anyway!  All of this was unsolicited advice, of course.  She knows nothing about my disease, but thinks she does because of junk she sees online, usually about "cures" that are worthless.  This isn't the first time she's done this to me, and I'm actually not the only one that's been the recipient of her "sage" advice.  
I have a sister-in-law that does me the same way.  I'm so sick of this!  Do any of you have this problem, or do I have a sign on me that says, "I'm too stupid and my doctor is too stupid to treat my disease, so tell me what to do!"   Or am I just too sensitive?  My husband tells me to let it go in one ear and out the other, but that's not easy to do for me.  I'm really hurt that instead of support, I get treated like I'm idiot and a wimp all rolled into one. sad
48 yr. old. Ileocolitis.  CD since early teens, misdx'd until age 36.  Hemicolectomy-left side in 2001.  Disease returned in 2003. Arthritis, episcleritis, chronic pain due to surgeries (nerve damage, adhesions) and disease.  Recently dx'd scoliosis.  History of endometriosis.

Mormor Vicky
Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 684
   Posted 10/5/2007 11:09 AM (GMT -7)   
JaSanne, I'm so sorry you had to deal with that. If she is a close friend maybe you could say something like "My doctor and I are handling this issue" If she's not a close friend I'd be nice but avoid her like the plague. You don't need that kind of trauma.

I have the opposite problem. My daughter has had Crohn's for 14 years. I only for a year. My daughter is in total denial so everyone in my family thinks it's just a minor problem. Since my daughter doesn't let people know, but me, when she is having problems most everyone, including my husband, thinks it's just a minor inconvenience. I probably should be the same as her. I have a close set of siblings but not once have they called just to see if I'm okay. Or to ask exactly what is Crohn's. Sometimes I feel that no one cares, even though I was in the hospital twice last year.
Vicky / 47 years old
DX'd with Crohn's during a resection August 2006
DX'd with Steriod induced Diabetes November 2006
Considered in Clinical remission but have minor signs of disease activity
Daughter (26) also has Crohn's since she was 12.
Currently on 4000mg of Pentasa only for Crohn's
No longer able to take 6-MP because of Bone-Marrow Suppression
Cymbalta, Metformin, Lipitor

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 3200
   Posted 10/5/2007 11:51 AM (GMT -7)   
You are not too sensitive. She is into your business too much. Some things are between you and your doctor.
Yes I have the same problem sometimes with my sister. However she was recently dx, with diabetes. Boy is
she singing a different song now. They always say what goes round.....

Too many years with CD
Two bowel resections, several obstructions.

Laughter is the brush that sweeps the cobwebs from our hearts

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 1362
   Posted 10/5/2007 1:10 PM (GMT -7)   
You are not being too sensitive. Often times people think they are helping by offering advice. If I were you, when asked questions about your treatment, etc, I would just say that it is between you and your medical team, and that you don't want to get into details. This is what I usually do anyway, I just try to do it nicely so that I don't hurt the other person's feelings, as they usually mean well. Take care.
"Of one thing I am certain, the body is not the measure of healing - peace is the measure. ~George Melton~"

Current Meds include:Colazal, Prednisone, Nexium and Remicade

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 79
   Posted 10/5/2007 7:52 PM (GMT -7)   
She sounds really annoying. If she asks again I would just say you can't make xyz event and don't offer any details. Don't even let her get started with it.

MorMor Vicky - that sucks. Your daughter has usurped your disease on you! What a pain. LOL. Sorry , can't help but laugh a little bit - its like she's stealing your thunder.

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 277
   Posted 10/5/2007 11:10 PM (GMT -7)   
First of all, I am sorry that you have to go through this. And NO YOU ARE NOT BEING TOO SENSITIVE! I have experienced this with family and friends too. They get irritated with me because I can't do lunch or dinner cause I'm tired and think I'm being anti social so I constantly have people mad at me. Then I go to the place and try to be social but I am so uncomfortable and grouchy that I look like an ass and they're mad at you because you ruined their time so it's a no win situation. It's because they are used to our old lives and just plain don't get it. Just like Dunny2 said, they would be singing a different tune if they were in our shoes.

I had to unfriend a girlfriend that I've known since 7th grade two weeks ago because she was telling me that I need to grow up, pull my head out of my butt, quit school, quit the hospital and work as a receptionist somewhere and act my age--my time to be a student has come and gone and I have to accept it. She told me that while I was in the hospital and I told her to respect my boundaries and I appreciated her concern, I am a grown woman and it's my dream and I will do what I wish. I thought it was a done deal. Well two weeks ago she said that I obviously didn't know what I was doing with my life and that she needed to sit me down and tell me how to make my life work. She said she knew she was overstepping boundaries but if her telling me this would help get me off my butt and do something, then it was worth it for me to get mad at her. I saw RED. That gurl is 38--she sounded like she was my grandma and my grandma would never tell me that. We need people to pick us up when we are down and help us get through this, not kick us in the teeth. Wala end of 25+ year friendship.

I'm not saying that you should unfriend your friend or sister in law but try to set up boundaries with her and if that doesn't work, then put space between you both to save your friendships. I like what Momor Vicky, jellybean1887, and mar1annec said about saying something vague so they have nothing to chomp on. I tried that with the above friend and basically it got to the point when we did meet, she jumped right in with those comments but your friend might have more common sense.

There are others that I have put boundaries up with and they do eventually back off but you have to be vigilant about telling them. (Sound like a broken record) Some people have to work on stuff themselves and thrive on getting in other people's drama so they don't have to deal with their own. You can tell this when they offer unsolicited advice and make YOU feel bad when you are the one that is trying to take care of business.

Hope this helps some. =0)
Newbie - 35 yrs old Diagnosed: 08/03/07
Asacol 3x day
Imuran 50MG 3 x day
Lamictal 125 MG/day for bioloar II

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 900
   Posted 10/6/2007 12:42 AM (GMT -7)   
Honey, You are NOT BEING TOO SENSITIVE! In fact, your "friend" is not being sensitive enough. I think we've all had the very same problem with friends or family that think they can fix us by changing our diet or adding a supplement. I used to have a friend who would follow me around the grocery store and tell me not to put things in my cart. It drove me nuts...needless to say , we are no longer friends because her meddling went far beyond diet advice. Those types of friends think that we and our medical teams are complete idiots . It is very condecending and not healthy for you at all.
I've lost a few "friends" who were too stressful to deal with. You shouldn't have to explain yourself to a friend who understands. All you should have to say is :"Today, is just one of those days...this outing is just not going to happen" A true friend would tell you to take good care of yourself, ask if there is anything they can do to help and tell you to call if you need her.Friends like that DO exist. They are rare and when you are fortunate enough to have such a person in your thank God for them and tell them what a blessing they are.
Good luck dear one,
50 yr.old retired RN,Crohn's D for last35 yrs..severe esophagitis, migraines,strictures,urethral stricture,depression,probable MS.

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 330
   Posted 10/6/2007 7:38 AM (GMT -7)   
I agree with everyone here -- you're not being too sensitive!

My strategy has been to offer as few details as possible. If someone asks about my specific meds (or treatments) I always say something vague like: "I'm working on a treatment plan with my doctor." Or, "I like my doctor and we have a good plan." If I want to be more specific, I might say: "I've just started a new medicine and I'm having some side effects." But, that's as far as I'll go. I ve learned that sharing too many details -- even with well-meaning people -- backfires.

People always seem to "have a friend" or have "read an article" or know about a's all too much input. Especially at work, where I want people to talk to me about work topics -- not CD. I keep the details between my doctor and myself.

I've also learned alot about how to respond to friends or others with chronic illnesses. Nobody wants an exhaustive pseudo-medical analysis from a friend! What people need is just listening, support, interest and care.

Your friend is the one who should feel bad after the conversation -- not you.
44 years old, newly diagnosed after an 8-day hospitalization in September 2007 but symptoms for several years before that.
Taking Pentasa, Prednisone (tapering), Cipro, Prilosec, probiotics, calcium and a multi-vitamin -- also Levoxyl for hypothyroid (Dx 2004)
Gall bladder surgery in 1997.
Single working mom to three wonderful kids, ages 9 to 15.

So appreciative to have this forum -- it's all new to me!

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 267
   Posted 10/6/2007 12:20 PM (GMT -7)   
You are not being to sensitive...why people think it's a good idea to play Dr. to their friends illness' is beyond me. I recommend you just bite your tongue and let it go in one ear and out the other. I think that your friend's meddling is God's way of testing your patience. Take care!


Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 148
   Posted 10/6/2007 12:54 PM (GMT -7)   
I get this far too often from family members and friends whose life long dreams are to be uneducated nurses or doctors. UGH. I get so angry. More than once I've had to tell these people who obviously care that if I wanted their advice I'll stop paying my doctor and write a fat check out to them. Until them they can be concerned but tell me what I need. haha.. I try to be polite but really, after 45 million people coming at me with remedies and home grown advice, it's a bit of a soft spot for me. ha.
25 years old
Diagnosed 9/06 with Pancolitis. The diagnosis was changed 9/20/07 to Crohn's disease.
Located in my large intestines, stomach, and mouth.
Asacol 3 3x's a day reinstated 9/20/07
Colazal 3 3x's a day which was stopped 9/11/07
Can not tolerate Prednisone in the slightest amount
Imuran 100mg a day. Which I started 8/24. Stopped 9/11/07
Methylpred 40 mg a day.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 2082
   Posted 10/6/2007 9:39 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you all so very much for the replies and advice!!! Just knowing I'm not alone with this problem is very comforting, though I don't wish it on anyone. And knowing I can come here and gripe, well, that's priceless!

Y'all are the best! :-) -Joy
48 yr. old. Ileocolitis.  CD since early teens, misdx'd until age 36.  Hemicolectomy-left side in 2001.  Disease returned in 2003. Arthritis, episcleritis, chronic pain due to surgeries (nerve damage, adhesions) and disease.  Recently dx'd scoliosis.  History of endometriosis.

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 331
   Posted 10/7/2007 6:29 PM (GMT -7)   
You are NOT being too sensitive.  I had those kind of problems with coworkers.  I educated them as much as possible with easy to read info.  People just don't understand at all.  The ones who really understand my situation, I have lived with them all at one time or another & then when they actually see how we are for more than 10 minutes in a day, they understand.  Since my husband of 7 months had to take me to the ER 2x now, one time with C-diff, well, let me just say, he totally understands, & now my 21 yr old stepdaughter does too.  god bless

Dx with CD 1987, 3 resections, 3 abcess sx, OA back & hips, bulging disk, Major depression/anxiety, kidney stones & sx to remove, now 44 yrs old.  Still trying to figure this disease out & of course all the little extra complications that come with this rollarcoaster of a life with CD. 
Meds:  Hurmira every other week 40 mg, Imuran .75 daily, cymbalta 60 mg daily, Lortab 7.5/500 x 4x, fish oil, fovia,vit e,folic acid,Vit B12,inject monthly,

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