©2018 by Beck Psychological Services. 

Chronic Illness Adjustment

Do you have a chronic illness that...

  • limits your ability to do the things you used to enjoy?

  • leaves you feeling exhausted?

  • includes pain?

  • impacts your work?

  • impacts your sex life?

Do You...

  • feel angry, sad, guilty, or resentful?

  • feel that you're not who you used to be?

  • feel as if you're grieving?

  • worry about your future?

  • feel that no one understands?

Chronic illnesses can have a huge impact on a person's life, even though they may be largely invisible to others. Whether you are dealing with the shock and disbelief of a new diagnosis, or are exhausted by years of struggling against the limitations and demands of an illness, it can be an extremely isolating experience. You may feel that friends, family, and co-workers have left you behind, leaving you feeling stuck simply managing your illness each day. Pain and lost abilities can result in fatigue, hopelessness, and fear. 

Seeking support can help. Becoming aware of the loss you have experienced and taking the time to consider what this illness means to you is key to healthy adjustment. You can learn ways of relating to your illness that reduces your suffering and implement relaxation strategies to help you cope with pain. Skills to manage fatigue can give you the energy to do the things that are most important to you. Creating a life that feels joyful, meaningful, and valuable is possible, even with a chronic illness.