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When you are expecting to have surgery, it can be stressful for both the person experiencing it and their families who nurse them back them back to health. The stress between families and patient is not the same because although it may be hard for families to see their loves in pain, they are not the ones experiencing it and it’s always harder for the person than it is for their loved ones. The support of family and friends is important when you are going through anything because without knowing people have your back you would never get through life’s biggest frustrations. My family and friends know that my disability has a lot of challenges where my health can change at any times and have always been supportive of that but sometimes my loved ones are not being as supportive as they think they are and says things that make my surgery anxiety worse. In this post, I am going to talk about things that my friends and family sometimes do that worsens my surgery anxiety that they could do better for less anxiety.
Talking about it when I am not there- I have had a lot of surgeries and am not going to have an emotional break down every time you bring it up because it’s healthy for me to talk about and eventually I will have to face. Sometimes people think that if they wait until I leave the room or whisper about my health when I am close by that it will cause less stress but it creates more. When I leave the room and all of a sudden I hear people talk about my health I assume that you are saying all these bad things that you couldn’t say to my face. I would rather people talk very loudly about my health than whisper about it because at least when you are loud I know what you’re saying and can be reassured it’s nothing negative. When people try to be secretive about it and I am somewhere close by I try and figure out what you are saying because it creates more anxiety when I don’t know.
Talking about my health out in public- If you want to talk about my health within my own circle of friends and family I am okay with that because it’s important that family knows about important life events but you don’t need to talk about someone’s health in public places. When I am out in public and people start sharing photos of my fracture and it’s the topic of conversation I have mini panic attacks because that it’s not the time nor the place to be talking about that. If you want to keep friends and family updated about my health it’s okay to do that but read the room and don’t do it places where strangers could be getting details about my health that is none of their buisness. When people bring up my surgery out in public I usually will just nod and go with it because I don’t want people to think I am being rude and don’t want them to talk about but don’t be fooled I hate minute of it!
Creating your own theories on what you think happened- Everyone has their own theories on how they think I got a fracture and even I have some thoughts on what I think happened which are probably more accurate than some of the other things I hear. Your opinion on what you think caused my fracture is not helpful and does not matter because it doesn’t change the fact it happened. I don’t want to hear your theories on what you think happened and unless you are my doctor that can provide valuable insight for preventing it from happening again I don’t want to hear what you think happened because it makes me think that you are blaming me for something which creates more anxiety. Some things in life you have to be okay with not having the answers to because even doctors can’t explain them and it’s not helpful to anyone to create your own ideas which are probably incorrect.
Posting about it on social media- I have never had family members post about my health online but I have had friends do it to get attention which was a big reason I was hesitant at first to share any of my surgeries online because I have had people cross boundaries. Send your friends a text if you want to check on them because making a Facebook status and tagging them is not how you create the right kind of attention. It’s insensitive because some people may not want their health online but now you gave them no choice because you went ahead and did it for them. People don’t write about health online to get attention but to spread awareness for a health condition and should not be used to increase your following because we are perfectly capable of making our own Instagram posts and don’t need friends to do it for us. When you go ahead and make public posts about someone’s health without asking it makes people feel uncomfortable and like you don’t respect their privacy because that is a real quick way to get on someone’s bad side.
Surgery is stressful for both families and the patient but it’s important to remember that it will always be harder on the person who has to deal with pain than it will on their families. Families play a huge role in recovery because without the support of families you would become depressed and never get through it. My family has always been supportive of all my surgeries and sometimes I don’t think my family intentionally does things that cause more anxiety, and they just may not know because I don’t call people out for every single thing. I don’t get as anxious as someone who has never had surgery would because the more surgeries you have the better you get at coping with it, but I am human, and every surgery affects me in a different way. Every surgery you learn something new and even if it’s the exact same procedure the experience may be different because no two surgeries are going to be the same. What worsens your surgery anxiety? If you have any other questions about what can make surgery anxiety or have any ideas for future blog posts, please leave a comment below.
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