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Why I Speak Out About My Illness, Even If You Don't Want to Hear It

Jessa Stultz
black and white photo of a woman holding up a sign that says "my 'silent' illness won't shut me up"

Society often either expects you to have an acute illness you can beat, or have a disease that can kill you. What do you say to someone who is very much alive but will never get better?

I have come to know that a lot of healthy people don’t know what to say to me (or any of us, for that matter). They’re also wondering why the hell I post
things that may depress them.

I speak out about my illnesses because no one talks about what it’s like to spend your life sick; no one wants to. Society wants you to be invisible; no one wants to hear about reality and how it can sometimes be cruel. Many of those who are chronically ill, whether they have my conditions or not, feel very alone.

I speak out about what I’m facing because I know that so many others are facing the same issues and it feels so much better to know that you are not the only one.

Related:Here's What You Should Know Before Joining a Clinical Trial

black and white photo of a woman holding up a sign that says "my 'silent' illness won't shut me up"

I feel that if one person speaks out, maybe others will too. We don’t have to battle our illnesses alone. Chronic illness doesn’t have to be a death sentence. I don’t speak out to depress you, I speak out to empower myself and those who are sick. Chronic illness is very real whether anyone wants to hear it or not. We should share our struggles so we can face them together rather than having people hide away and battle their sadness alone.

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