How to cope with people staring and asking what’s wrong with you?

I was diagnosed at age 2 and now 27. I walk with a cane because I have bad knees and they don’t straighten. I have people stare at me, and ask me “what’s wrong with you?” I tell them I have RA. Some of them know what it is and other’s look at me like will I get that? It’s hard for me to not yell at them what’s wrong with you asking me that. I get embarrassed when people stare at me. How do others deal with people asking you that?

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

Comments

View Comments (4)
  • Tiptoetammy17 author
    1 year ago

    Thanks carla thanks for your response it was helpful. You have some really good points hand a good day and weekend

  • Ketki Gupte moderator
    2 years ago

    Hi, Tiptoetammy17. Thank you for sharing your story with the community. We’re so sorry to hear about your experience. Please, know you are not alone and there are others in the community that might share their frustrations with you too. I thought I would share something that one of writer’s, Kelly, who also lives with RA, wrote about: https://rheumatoidarthritis.net/living/not-your-teachable-moment/ Here, Kelly, who also lives with RA, shares your frustration on being stared at and in general people not understanding what RA is. We understand you and are here to support you, reach out anytime. Warmly, Ketki

  • Carla Kienast
    2 years ago

    This is tough. I don’t think any of us get used to the stupid and frequently rude questions from other people and especially strangers. I normally try to at least be polite and answer with some information about RA (if I have the energy). But I have to admit that I have, on occasion, used Miss Manner’s classic response of, “If you will forgive me for not answering, I will forgive you for being so rude to ask such a question in the first place.” I think that people who believe they are being friendly and caring don’t realize how rude they really are.

  • Lauren Tucker moderator
    2 years ago

    Great point Carla! Thanks for sharing that with us. I am sure it will resonate with others.
    Best, Lauren (RheumatoidArthritis.net Team)

  • Poll