Dear Ms. Meniscus,
I am 25-years-old and have RA and fibromyalgia, and frankly I don’t feel like dating at all. I’m perfectly content with my life without dating. A friend wants to fix me up for a date on Valentine’s Day but I want no part of it. Now my friend is mad at me. What should I do?
Laurie in Colorado
It’s no surprise that you don’t feel like dating when you don’t feel well, but Madame wants you to realize something: you’re only 25-years-old!
She’d like you to take a few minutes to analyze why it is that you want no part of dating. If you are without energy and feeling low you may need to speak to your health care provider. This person may tell you that a lack of energy will come and go, or they may want to look further for causes, such as the side effects of medication, sleep disturbance, or nutrition issues. This is a conversation worth having.
The second question Madame would like to pose has to do with whether or not you have a lot of anxiety about having to tell someone that you have RA and fibromyalgia. Go easy here. Who among us doesn’t have something we deal with in this life? You must understand that yes, you have this condition, but you don’t have to bear it alone for the rest of your life. Trust Madame, there is a special person out there who would understand your situation and who could bring you companionship and that last ingredient we often forget about: Fun!
Nobody, least of all Madame, wishes to push you into a date on the loving day of obligation, otherwise know in our rapturous consumer culture (with regrets to all the love bugs out there) as Valentine’s Day.
You have a friend who wants to see you enjoying life, and that’s kind, but the angry response isn’t. Explain to her or him that you are most appreciative of the effort, but going out on lover’s day would be awkward and you aren’t ready. You might also say that you will give it some thought, and when you feel ready, he/she will be the first to know. After you say all of the above, offer candy, maybe a few gumdrops, or a chocolate heart, Madame isn’t a love scrooge, and she happens to like valentines, the hand- made kind.
Good luck to you Laurie, may life bring you something sweet.