A man leans over, pats a girl on the back and gives her a thumbs up as she turns away looking uncomfortable.

I Know What You Are Going Through...

From time to time, I have heard this expression "I know what you are going through." There was a time that this wouldn't bother me, but after hearing it so often, it became bothersome to me.

You don't understand what I go through

It bothers me when people tell me, "I know what you are going through." When, in fact, people don't know what I go through on a daily basis trying to keep up with my chronic skin condition.

I choose what you see

I only give people enough to see, but I don't show them everything I truly go through. Also, as someone who has had eczema for a long time knows that it is not all good days. We have bad days, even weeks of agony and pain. Yet, we get up every day and still try to keep going.

Think before you speak

Next time you see someone suffering, no matter what their medical or condition might be, think before you speak. Remember that many conditions are not just physically but mentally draining as well. Any little word or saying can make us feel worse about ourselves. I know you might be trying to make us feel better, but it actually tends to do the opposite.

What can you say instead?

Instead of saying that, you can say, "Is there anything I can help you with to make your day better?" It goes a long way to show that you care about our emotions. Also, by saying this, you make the person feel less pressured to talk about their condition and change their thinking to something more positive.

How does it make me feel?

Often from my experience, when my skin is flaring, I tend to only think about my skin and how it is impacting me. I think negative thoughts and put myself down. When someone asks me how they can help me, it can automatically change my day. It also makes me feel more appreciated by others around me.

Be accountable for what you say

Lastly, I believe it is important to be accountable for what you say. If you truly worry/care about someone with a condition, be aware of when they are in need. There is nothing worse than saying to someone that you will be there for them. When in fact you are not available.

Your actions speak louder than words

I think it is important to understand that your actions are more important than words. If you can, check-in with someone and be there for them often. They will feel more comfortable opening up to you. Please, check up on your loved ones if they have a condition. Especially if they are struggling with something right now that negatively impacts them. It is important to be kind to one another and support each other. The society we live in tends to be cruel and unjust to people with medical problems.

So next time you hear someone say, "I know what you are going through." Let them know how you truly feel when they say that. Help them to understand that by saying that you aren't feeling better.

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The AtopicDermatitis.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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