1. I don’t need your sympathy but I do need your understanding.
2. Don’t be embarrassed. If you have a question, just ask!
3. It’s not you, it’s me. Please be patient when I can’t make events/cancel last minute/don’t return your calls.
4. Needing help and support is not easy to ask for, but know I appreciate every offer.
5. Don’t be afraid. Sometimes my treatment is scary and unknown to you. It’s ok to not know what I’m going through.
6. Don’t be a stranger! Visits, texts, phone calls are all welcome.
7. Your children’s questions and comments are great. Don’t shush them when they point and ask, kids don’t bullshit.
8. Sometimes I don’t want to talk about it. Don’t be offended if I answer quickly and then change the subject.
9. Sometimes I do want to talk about it. Sorry if I bore your ear off with a rant. I don’t need answers, I just need to vent.
10. Sometimes it takes the strength and stamina of a mountain climber to just do the things that come normally to you.
11. Hospitals hate flowers. But I don’t! If you want to send me them, wait till I’m home. Then I’ll cherish them.
12. I appreciate that being my friend/partner/colleague is sometimes a bit tough. Thank you for being part of my life.
13. Sometimes I feel really sorry for myself and my head is in a whirl. Sorry for the times I hide away.
14. When you send me links to things about my illness, it means a lot to know you’re trying to understand and help.
15. It’s not all about me! Please don’t worry that your struggles aren’t “as bad” as mine. I want to know what you’re going through and help when I can.
16. Sometimes my meds make me fat/thin/sleepy/manic/sad/weird/angry. Don’t worry.
17. I have good days and bad. Often my good days lead to bad days because I push myself too hard so I get to do nice things.
18. I’m sometimes a bad friend because I lock myself away and I’m not there for you. I’m sorry.
19. My husband and kids are going through this too. Don’t forget them. (Timm always accepts trips to the pub)
20. This is a lifelong thing with no cure. If you can’t take the heat, get the fuck out of my kitchen.