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Talking to family and friends about understanding this disease moving forward and how it impacts our lives

I recently was asked the question by a family member about just what is RA? And will I have this until I die? And also, "you mean you have to take those medicines for the rest of your life"? So..I didn't mind the questions one bit! Actually this was the first time in 3 years that a family member chose to bridge the subject! And I was pretty confident that she really did want to try to understand my situation. Just having her ask me those questions! I was over the moon! So..what do so many other folks do when asked those kind of questions? I was for a short amount of time able to really feel listened to with understanding

  1. Hi . It is great that you are excited about and grasping the opportunity to discuss and educate about RA with someone who has expressed a genuine interest. I just showed your question to my wife, Kelly Mack (a contributor here), was diagnosed at two and has had juvenile RA for over 40 years and you inspired her to add this to her list on things to write about (she also doesn't shy away from talking with those interested in learning). I know this doesn't help in the moment. I did find this article from our editorial team which compiled thoughts from the community on what they want people to know about RA: https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/living/want-people-know-ra. Kelly did note that she wants people to know that, despite RA being a systemic autoimmune condition that can touch every aspect of a person's health and life, it is still possible to build a fulfilling and enjoyable life. Hopefully others will chime in with their thoughts. Best, Richard (RheumatoidArthritis.net Team)

    1. , I am with you on feeling heard for the first time. When asked about RA, I am usually not being asked but instead told what to do, what to feel, or what they think about modern medicine. I love talking about health issues, I hate being told.

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