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Entering the Golden Years with Hepatitis C

Entering the Golden Years with Hepatitis C

You work hard all of your life. Getting a career and family going takes up your twenties. By the time you reach your thirties, you are feeling more confident. This is a time when you are probably more stable with your job and you have a home you are proud of. Your forties are expensive as you see your children off into adulthood. Getting them through school consumes a lot of time and even more money. Just when you think it’s time to rest, you get diagnosed with the hepatitis C virus. Here’s some tips on how to handle it.

Put Yourself First

This is not being selfish. It’s actually the opposite. By taking care of your health, mental, and financial needs, you can be a better person in all of your relationships. If giving too much to others will leave you feeling fatigue, then say no. Sometimes when we’re sick, we feel like we have to give everything to our friends, family, or even our boss. We’re afraid of losing the connections that we need. Sure we’re vulnerable when we are on medications or hep C treatment. But we are not doormats.

Set Healthy Boundaries

In order to put yourself first, that means someone, or a lot of somebodies, are going to have to wait. They may want your time, your energy, your personal items, or even your money. Learn to say no when it’s appropriate to do so. We deserve some time and space and can set boundaries. If people are used to you giving all the time, expect them to give you some flack at first. They will get used to it if you are firm and gentle.


Sometimes we can’t say no. When someone asks you to work late, tell them that you will do all you can while you’re on the job, but that you can’t work late. If it’s a family situation, offer a different solution to their problem. Tell them you can cook for the family, but you need someone else to do the clean up. This way you can protect your body and get the rest you need and still be there for others.

Act Your Age

Sometimes I get caught up in remaining strong and youthful. I want to do everything that I did in my younger years. Having the hepatitis C virus and all the problems and side effects didn’t help. After surviving massive varices bleeds, anemia, low platelets, liver cancer, and a transplant, I wanted to do absolutely everything. But I am slowly learning that it’s okay to slow down a little.

Entering the golden years with hepatitis C is a little different for us. We can still work hard, enjoy our families, and do meaningful work. We also have to insure that we have some time and energy left for ourselves. Taking care of our health is twice as important and we can negotiate with others to make sure that we enjoy every single day of our lives.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.