May is ME Awareness Month (along with literally every other illness, it seems). I’m too despondent to write something new, so I figured I’d recap my top 6 posts regarding ME/CFS and chronic illness in general.
1. A Dummies’ Guide to ME/CFS
I think I started off my blog with this rather ambitious 5-part series about ME/CFS. Besides more recent research findings, it covers near everything I know about the illness. If you want a shorter summary, try my article for MamaMia, “Seven things you probably don’t know about chronic fatigue syndrome.”
2. Chronic Fatigue vs “Chronic Fatigue Syndrome” (ME)
I wrote this for the May 12 Blog Bomb last year, and it’s still relevant – the conflation of a generalised sense of fatigue and the specific illness ME/CFS does a great deal of damage to the ME/CFS community as a whole. Check out my article to read the differentiation between the two.
3. Betrayed – a brief summary of the PACE trial
I daresay there has been no greater harm done to the ME/CFS community than that inflicted by the PACE trail, an abysmal betrayal of both science and chronically ill people which led to potentially harmful interventions being recommended to ME/CFS patients for years.
Last year, raw data from the trial was finally revealed in a prolonged court case, and I wrote about the duplicitousness, cherry picking and biases which promoted this farce of a study to the pages of The Lancet.
4. Handy responses to commonly heard phrases
After that heavy reading, I feel like some laughs are in order (and yes, I’m THAT person who laughs at their own jokes until they cry). In this post, I give some handy snap backs to the kind of shitty comments chronically ill people hear every day.
5. Six Things You Can Do For Your Chronically Ill Friend
Sometimes, friends and family of those with chronic illnesses want to help, but don’t exactly know how.* I’ve shared six tips for how to best support the chronically ill people in your life.
6. On Being “Nice”
You know what I’m sick and tired of (besides being sick and tired)? The expectation that minority groups such as ME/CFS patients should sit in complacent silence while being at best dismissed, and at worst attacked. Spreading awareness is a great start, but a cause was never advanced by being “nice” – let’s start disrupting things and make some noise.
*We’re talking best case scenario here. I’m sure any chronically ill person has a story or two about those who pledged support then did a runner when things got mildly difficult.