Body positivity with a chronic illness

Written by: Jenny Woodward Body positivity

Not everyone suffering with a chronic illness and disability will have an issue with their mental health or body image. But for some, living with an illness can seriously affect their emotional wellbeing, which in turn can affect their closest relationships. You've got to love yourself before anyone else can, but how?

Why do I feel this way?

Trying to understand and cope with an illness or disability can be extremely frustrating, particularly if you've been used to living your life a certain way and now have to make changes. These frustrations can manifest into you having a negative narrative with your body, that nagging inner voice. Whereas before you may never have given your body a second thought, now it's a big focus of your attention.

Body image

You might feel incredibly angry that your body is not doing what it should. You may feel your body is faulty, weak, and in-turn unworthy of your love let alone anyone else's. It's natural to feel this way. Giving these negative thoughts room to grow however will quickly break down your self-esteem and confidence. How you're feeling on the inside can manifest itself on the outside, projecting negative self-worth onto others. You could be unwittingly pushing people away as a result.

Love thyself

Focusing on your emotional wellbeing can help you cope better with chronic illness. Ask that negative internal voice if you'd say the same thing to someone else. Bet you wouldn't. Healing happens when we are kind and compassionate toward ourselves. Start by understanding as much as you can about your condition to make you feel empowered in making the right choices. Focus on what you can do, rather than what you can't. Reach out to others, finding you're not alone with these feelings can be incredibly healing. Disability dating sites can be a supportive network for this. Write down some body-positive mantras and stick them on your mirror or around the house to repeat out loud throughout the day.

Find what makes you feel good

True body positivity is about honesty. Of course you're still going to have days when you feel awful, you don't always have to force positivity. Treating yourself to small, happy pleasures can go a long way to bringing you out the other side. Whether it's putting on some red lipstick, eating a burger the size of your head, or chatting with someone online via a disabled dating site. Listen to your body and just do what makes you feel good.

Dating with a chronic illness

Being single and navigating the world of dating is challenging for everyone, disabilities aside. That positive attitude and feeling comfortable in your skin is half the battle toward finding a romantic partner, confidence looks hot on everyone! Whether you choose disabled dating sites, singles events or just getting out there, be patient. Finding someone who will support you through the ups and downs in life takes time.

You may have certain limits in life, but that doesn't make you less worthy of love. Remember nobody's perfect and no body is perfect either.

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