Wednesday, 7 September 2016

That time I was in The Telegraph

Hello again,

Just a brief note to, firstly, say that I wrote an article that was in the Telegraph this week. Link here. It's entirely possible you already know, either because that's what led you here, or, more likely, because I told everyone I know.
It's a bit strange trying to pare down your situation to 700 words, but I'm pretty pleased with the results, even if the editing took out my favourite line!
I do feel I need to say, however, that I originally made sure to say outright that mental illnesses are real illnesses. It's just that my illness is physical.
The final edit still implied that view, but I think it's important to reiterate that.
I didn't have space to go into the importance of psychological tools in managing physical illness, or the psychological symptoms/tag-alongs of the illness (anxiety etc), and, honestly, I was worried it might muddy the waters on my views about ME/CFS.
ME/CFS is physical, we know that and we have proof, but having a chronic illness plays merry hell with your emotional and mental state, and it's important to make sure that side of your recovery or management is supported. I Skype regularly with both a psychologist and a hypnotherapist and I find both of those things immensely helpful. (Plus they're both really nice.)

Secondly, I'd just like to say thank you to all the responses I've had from people. It's been a little overwhelming and I'm not sure I'm going to be able to respond to everyone (I will try, but no promises!), but please believe that it's very much appreciated.
I will also definitely take the medical suggestions under advisement, but I am currently with the Optimum Health Clinic, getting advice from a nutritionist, and under the care of the local NHS ME/CFS clinic, so worry not, I'm not languishing in the way you might think!
The article was the bare bones of my situation, and yes, my situation is worse than others... but better than some! I'm doing well and I have been slowly improving since I first became housebound.

If you want to continue to follow the discussion on the recent research that shows similarities been sufferers' blood and hibernating animals, there's a radio piece on today on BBC Radio Scotland on the Kaye Adams programme. I think it's around 11am but I'm not positive.
They did ask me to join in via phone, but unfortunately the excitement of the article being published (and the payback from writing it in the first place) have meant that I can't be involved. They might quote my article though, so that's pretty exciting.
As far as I'm aware, Dr Shepherd, the medical advisor for the ME Association will be talking, so it's likely to be good.

Until next time, I'm sending you lots of love.



  1. Thanks for sharing your article - I hadn't seen it published. I hope it goes some way to educating readers about CFS and reducing stigma.

  2. Really good article. I was especially pleased that you emphasised that 'mind over matter' - not treating your illness as physical - was actually harmful to you, as that's the bit that's so widely misunderstood! Thank you for helping increase awareness and understanding. Hope you're feeling a bit better now. Samantha x