Family problems

I have RA and hypermobility and I injured one of my knees last week. I got a puppy on Monday (she's mine so my responsibility) but my parents are making me do most of the care of our other dog (basically everything apart from 2 of his 3 walks) on top of all the puppy's care. Even without an injured knee I would be finding it difficult as it's causing me to be on my feet a lot with barely a moment's rest.

Before we got the puppy we agreed that they would take over the majority of the care for our other dog to make my life a bit easier.

This morning my dad came in from walking Freddie and told me to go make his dinner. I'd literally just had chance to sit down and I'd been on the go for 2 hours already. I asked him whether him or mam could do it as I'd just had chance to get a rest and I'd been doing almost everything for Freddie. Dad walked off muttering and came back and ordered me to go make Freddie's dinner NOW. I didn't move and Mam ended up making his dinner which he now won't eat and I'm getting the blame for it.

I don't know what to do. I don't know how to explain that I just need to have my rest when I have the opportunity to get it. But I've tried to explain it a hundred times before even before I got the puppy. It's making me wish I hadn't got her and it makes me feel betrayed that I was promised help by my parents and am now refused it.

Can anyone offer any advice?

3 Replies

You should say ok but on my terms. Say I will feed him when I have had a rest and able. If feeding Freddie was one of your jobs before then do that on condition that they do the walks. I know my husband always says my labs are mine and won't do anything for them, but I don't care I do things when I'm ready. Keep your chin up o centre the pup is house trained and injected it will be a lot easier.



Download this paper for your parents, family and friends, it explains about chronic illness and our ability to cope with daily living. Useful for people who have difficulty understanding chronic illness.

I don't know why it is not showing up as a link, so copy and paste it into your browser to access it. I gave a copy to my friend who still expected me to be the same energetic person I was before RA. You will not be disappointed.

1 like

Hi Emma

Firstly, congratulations on the new puppy, who I hope will bring you lots of joy when things settle down.

Unfortunately, family can sometimes be the worst for understanding the nature of this condition, especially as it fluctuates, so you can be fine one moment and really struggling the next. Sometimes it can help to suggest that they read something about RA if you feel they aren't listening to you telling them about it, as Braecoon suggested.

Also, remember that the NRAS helpline is here and we do speak to family members, not just to people with RA, so you can always suggest they call and speak to us if you think it will help.

I hope that you get this resolved and are able to arrange a better distribution of pet responsibilities. Perhaps sitting down with them and putting together a bit of a rota would help, though make sure they understand that during flare ups you may not always be able to do everything you might normally be responsible for.

Kind regards


(NRAS Helpline)


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