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How to sympathise with “first world” problems

Some struggles win our sympathy easily – but what about those which don’t?

Some struggles win our sympathy easily.

My mother died.

I have cancer.

We are being evicted.

These announcements normally evoke an emotional response. We recognise them as huge, world-breaking problems. They are tragedies with capital ‘T’s.

For this reason it is often easier to sympathise with our chronically ill friend, than our whining-about-their-chipped-nails colleague. And yet, we’ve discussed that as humans (and even more so as Christ-followers) we really ought to sympathise with both.

Easy to say.

Hard to do.

Continue reading “How to sympathise with “first world” problems”

Why you should sympathise with first world problems (when your own are much bigger)

First world problems – is there anything more irritating when you’re going through tragedy?

I stubbed my toe.

I can’t afford concert tickets.

There’s no chocolate in my house.

Who hasn’t heard such complaints? From friends, colleagues – perhaps from yourself.

We often label them “first world problems”.

And they can be annoying. Especially as Watchers.

Continue reading “Why you should sympathise with first world problems (when your own are much bigger)”

Chronic illness is affecting my relationship… and I can’t help it.

Relationships with our chronically ill partners, friends or family members can be difficult. It’s important that we admit this, and carry on. But what does ‘carry on’ look like?

A PRESENT FOR YOU ALL

I’ve been wanting to give something to followers of this blog for a while, and I’ve been struggling with what is appropriate.

We all know that “Get Well Soon” cards are difficult to buy when the person you love has a chronic illness – so I’ve made some alternatives.

When you add your email address here, I will send them to you! May they help you love others 🙂 

Chronic illness relationships are hard – so what do we do?

Continue reading “Chronic illness is affecting my relationship… and I can’t help it.”

3 reasons it is good to be sad after a chronic illness diagnosis

Who wants to be sad? No one. But what if it is actually a good thing?

I don’t like being sad. Do you?

Being sad means I no longer feel like laughing at someone’s joke or daydreaming in the sun. Being sad can mean I get headaches from crying, or find it difficult to concentrate during lectures, sermons or long conversations.

And yet, the truth is, when tragedy strikes our loved ones, it can actually be helpful to be sad.

Here’s why.

Continue reading “3 reasons it is good to be sad after a chronic illness diagnosis”

3 questions to ask when chronic illness threatens your relationship (and the only one that matters)

Chronic illness can place stress on a relationship – but so can one simple question…

My chronically ill spouse, friend, family member hates me.

… and I’m beginning to suspect I hate them back.

These are big words. Painful, awful words. But so is being hurt by someone you love. ‘Dislike’ just doesn’t do it justice.

When we’ve invested a lot of time and emotional energy into a difficult relationship, it can be devastating when it crumples. This is especially true when our partner or friend is battling a chronic illness.

If our ill family member yells at us or threatens to leave, it can also be shameful. Fighting with your hospitalised grandmother, complaining about your chronically ill brother… it just seems wrong.

But it happens. So what do you do?

Continue reading “3 questions to ask when chronic illness threatens your relationship (and the only one that matters)”

The 3 dangers of being sad after a chronic illness diagnosis

Sadness is valid but does that make it a good response to tragedy? Well… maybe not.

Sadness after a chronic illness diagnosis, that’s valid, right? We said it was here.

It’s a good thing… yes?

Well – sort of.

The 3 dangers of being sad after a chronic illness diagnosis

Continue reading “The 3 dangers of being sad after a chronic illness diagnosis”

Should I be encouraging my chronically ill friend to serve?

We can’t really be expected to hold our friends accountable when they can barely get out of bed… can we?

Accountability and encouragement are two things we talk a lot about as Christians. Similarly, we know that the Bible calls us all to serve God.

But what do we do when our friend (who we are supposed to be encouraging to serve) is chronically ill? Surely sickness lets them off the hook?

We can’t really be expected to hold them accountable in this area when they can barely get out of bed… can we?

To read the rest of the post head over to Blogs by Christian Women where I am guest posting this week!