How important is having a support network around you? Many people with MS report that this is the single most important thing in their successful management of MS. Oftentimes, friends, family, neighbours, and co-workers all want to help. But sometimes it’s hard to ask for help, or to know what kind of help you really need.
Take inventory of those around you and think about how much you need their help. Consider some small things that others can do with you, and for you, that will give them a sense of supporting you. And don’t hesitate to reach out for help when you really need it. Some examples:
At home: can your spouse take on one of your chores that usually make you tired?
At work: does your job allow you to turn to a trusted co-worker for help on a day you need to go for a medical exam?
The kids: what activities can you do together with your children that keep you all healthy?
Your MS nurse: what kinds of training and resources can he or she share with you?
Your physician: how is your MS therapy working, and can he or she tell you more about some of your treatment options?
You need to determine what works best for you. Do you need a lot of help, or a little? What kind of support network do you have around you? Can a small thing like having someone help you with grocery shopping or carpooling for your children make a big difference?
Take a look at your network, and don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it.