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Just a question i thought i would put out to the people.

Do you think that because we have RA our ideal partners would be sufferes themselves. The reasoning behind the question is that that would have a full understanding of the disease and be better prepared for the ups and downs associated with the disease. I am not suggesting for one minute that we all get rid of our present partners and that we set up our own colony, far from it.

11 Replies

Hi Zimmie, I know where your coming from but if we both had RA would we really have the energy to support each other in the way we would want to.

What if we both had a flare at the same time? What if one had RA so aggressive they needed lots of round the clock care or even in a wheelchair the other would probably feel so frustrated as they were unable to help in the way they wanted to.

So many pluses and minuses to this scenario, of course they would totally understand but that could cause problems too.

I have to say my hubby has supported me in all my 17 years of RA and done everything he possibly could for me while holding down a job. In fact he knows my RA better than me at times, he can tell when a flare is coming on or when I've over done things, and after reading some of the things on this site I know that not all partners are the same so I guess I'm lucky in that way and others may feel differently about your question!

Excellent question though Zimmie.

mand xx



I too think that if both you and your partner had a chronic disease things would be tough - but it does happen.

True empathy, the ability to think/feel 'as if in the others' shoes' makes all the difference and is the key ingredient necessary in friends, family or significant others. And after all, not everyone who has a chronic disease is necessarily a nice person or easy to live with, illness doesn't discriminate!

I'm single and have a couple of good friends who really make an effort to be informed and understand how my life is and my colleagues are good too. But for me the chances of meeting anyone new (relationship-wise) seem remote as RA has had a big impact on my social life (near to non-existant) and working part-time takes up all my energy.

Cece x


Good lord no! NO! NO! I have only ever wished this condition on one person and that was in jest! My best girl pal has osteoporosis for years she is 47 , we already have joking rows over who is going to push who in our wheel chairs! I am so glad my hubs is a strong healthy man, even though he did glaze tnite when I got him to google ESR & CRP, he said you should read this, I said for gods sake I know what it is!! LOL, X. Never never think that. Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus and as long as you understand that you are on to a winner!


I have always said that I wouldn't wish this thing on my worst enemy, although I must admit that I've wanted certain people to have it for a few days, just to see what it feels like (Ahh! If I had a magic wand!). NO WAY would I want this for my husband, because he'd whine & moan and never do a single sodding thing! Anyway, who would open my tins when I can't negotiate the supposedly RA friendly thing onto the tin, or drive the car, knowing how much I hate driving, and can't manage it that well now that I'm honest. I recall telling my manager about a year ago that I'm OK about my RA, and that I'm glad I have it rather than someone else I love, because I can live with it, but other people that I'm close to wouldn't be strong enough. My husband whines like a child when he has a headache; I shudder to think what he'd be like as a fellow sufferer!


I am with mand on this one. I too havoc a fantastic partner who supports me totaly. We have been together seventeen years way before ra hit but he is still amazing and totaly tries his best to help and support me physically and mentally. He went through the stage last year of pushing moody me round in my wheelchair but I am lucky now the nhs gave me an electric one so no need to be pushed anymore. I wouldn't change my partner for the world.


No Zimmie, it would definitely not be better for us, if my partner had a chronic illness too, by golly what an awful muddle we'd be in! :)


Although I totally understand where you're coming from, I've got to scream NOOOOO loudly! I'm sure there are couples that make it work when they find themselves in the situation, but I expect that it would kill most relationships and end up with the 'my RA is worse than your RA' scenario!


I think I know where you are coming from Zimmie, it seems a good idea, understandingwise, but for all the other reasons in the replies then no.

Relationships are relationships no matter who has what disease, if you should find someone you really wanted to be with and you both had RA you would cope because you want to. To have it thrust on someone already in a relationship is a different thing. I am thinking here about my poor old brother. Who is not poor and is only 62 but anyway, He has Parkinsons Disease. He has the devils own time with his meds and trying to balance them and then find some that suit him, only to have them turn on him within a few months. His wife does not want to understand or help him. He has now found comfort in the arms of another Parkinsons suffer and they support and help each other absolutely brilliantly, I am so happy for him because he has that understanding in this relationship now. I dont know what will happenin the future if either of them get ill to manage physically, I suppose it will mean outside help but at least they have each others understanding at the moment. However, it is not only the Parkinsons they have in common, it is who they are first and foremost because as sure as eggs is eggs unless without the disease they were compatable, it wouldn't work. He never really got on with his wife in the first place and used to live almost separate lives. That's got nothing to do with it has it? Oh dear I go on again. Hope you find this reply interesting, because I think I have lost the plot arghhhh........ Julie x


Some interesting comments about this blog, and it seems the vast majority believe that being with a partner who doesn't have a chronic illness like ourselves

is far more beneficial to us than some one who has. It would be interesting to hear what the partners views on this would be?.


Zimmie I spoke to my better half this morning about this. His reply was "how on earth would 2 people with RA cope and support each other, he also said same as Julie, that they would be comparing RA and wanting more sympathy. He compared it to a neighbour off mine, who once said to me why are you using sticks I have RA and I dont use sticks, when I asked him who he sees at the hospital he said no-one! He also said he took no medication for his RA except glucusamien supplements! That dosent sound like RA too me unless he is in remision. Whichever way no two RA's seem to be the same and my better half seems to think partners would compare and it wouldnt work. That was his opinion at points he has had to lift me into the bath and out of chairs etc, how on earth would another RA sufferer do this. Sorry just our opinion.

Take care xx Julie


ooh zimmie


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