Finding Comfort: Coping with Hepatitis C
After being diagnosed with hep C, feelings of loss, isolation, fear of dying, and fear of the reactions from others are all possible. Sadness, anger, fear and feeling lost are all common. I was lucky to have my mother to support me, who was first diagnosed with hep C. We both leaned on each other with our fears. It was not until her health began to fade that I started fearing being alone. Witnessing my fate in her and seeing the harshness of hep C terrified me to my core.
Looking for support
After her passing, I was alone. I was isolated. I searched and searched for anyone who also had hep C to bond with, but during 2005, there was nothing online and no social platforms to bring together those fighting the same battle. It was not until 2010 when I found my new amazing hepatologist and learned of several books he had published on the very topic of hepatitis C. I read and read, soaking in all the grim details about what hep C was and the devastation it was doing to my liver. I got to learn all the medical facts about hep C, but I was now lacking that personal connection with another patient. Although I gained the confidence in what I had been diagnosed with, I lacked the human connection to someone who when I shared I was fatigued or my muscles hurt, they would actually understand (even though it was not a textbook documented symptom).
Finding online resources
I do not actually remember when I found a group on Facebook linking me to others, but I do recall one group being so supportive and upbeat, giving me positive advice and comfort, while the other group talked of death, misery, and despair day in and day out. I felt drained reading those posts. I removed myself shortly after finding the upbeat group. I was not a down, depressed type person. I already had a diagnosis that was downer, so I did not need to keep filling my mind with despair.
After gaining my cure in 2015 off a clinical trial, I started my foundation with links to private, upbeat, and supportive groups. I wanted to create a place one would feel at home and find the push needed to fight this fight. It was shortly after this time I found HepatitisC.net, this amazing group I am honored to share my story and experience with.
We are here for you!
Not everyone’s journey is the same and not everyone will have the same symptoms beat for beat. Therefore, this group here is so unique. You can find your favorite writer and connect with them or simply learn and grown from each of our experiences. We are here for you and I want you to know that we all care. If we do not have an answer to your question you pose to us, we will do our best to steer you to it. Do not lose hope. There is a cure, there is support and most of all, there those who understand.
Have you been diagnosed with cirrhosis?