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18 Reviews
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5.0 out of 5 stars Big help!
"Great book! I've been sick since I was 17, I am now 31 and it is the first time that I feel understood! Every page I'm like: '' Yes. Yes, this is exactly how is is! It IS how it feels!''. It goes deep into your fears, doubts and frustration. Even your despair. It goes deep enough to know it was written by people who went through it too. But it also show you there is more...
Published 8 months ago by Mariane

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3.0 out of 5 stars Useful in parts but specific to one illness pattern to some extent
This book was very good and seemed to offer lots of useful advice but it seemed to be aimed at those with a certain type of disease pattern, perhaps the type which the authors were most familiar with. (Which is fair enough!)

This book is great, probably, if you have a non-severe and/or relapsing and remitting disease. But I found very little here for coping...
Published on Jan. 29 2012 by Jodi-Hummingbird


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5.0 out of 5 stars Big help!, Aug. 2 2013
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"Great book! I've been sick since I was 17, I am now 31 and it is the first time that I feel understood! Every page I'm like: '' Yes. Yes, this is exactly how is is! It IS how it feels!''. It goes deep into your fears, doubts and frustration. Even your despair. It goes deep enough to know it was written by people who went through it too. But it also show you there is more to life. I felt understood and supported for the first time. It's a good place to start if you want to change the way you think or feel about your health situation."
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3.0 out of 5 stars Useful in parts but specific to one illness pattern to some extent, Jan. 29 2012
By 
Jodi-Hummingbird - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Sick And Tired Of Feeling Sick And Tired (Paperback)
This book was very good and seemed to offer lots of useful advice but it seemed to be aimed at those with a certain type of disease pattern, perhaps the type which the authors were most familiar with. (Which is fair enough!)

This book is great, probably, if you have a non-severe and/or relapsing and remitting disease. But I found very little here for coping with very severe disease with no breaks!

The book very much asssumes throughout that patients will have periods of illness and then periods of wellness, or at least periods of being slightly less unwell.

This just does not apply to Myalgic Encepahlomyelitis, and especially severe M.E. - nor to many other diseases I am sure. As such for those of us who fit this description, much of the advice in the book is inappropriate and can't be used and is also slightly depressing. (To read a book which assumes you'll have better health periods now and then, when this isn't the case and hasn't been for many years can make you feel a bit sad.)

The problem of being bedbound, housebound or unable to speak for long periods, or write or have visitors, is also not mentioned at all.

I don't mean all this even as a criticism of the book really, as I am sure this book is suitable for many poeple and the authors had to write what they knew. Also, when a book has 'invisible illness'in the title, I suppose this does to some extent suggest it covers diseases which do not leave you obviously visibly ill such as bedbound or housebound. That would be a very fair point as well of course. (Although many other diseases the book discusses are called invisible when really the patients do look ill, perhaps just not 'ill enough' for how disabled they are for some critical bystanders!)

But I just want to add this comment about it not fitting all disease types as well for the benefit of readers such as myself who will not get as much out of this book as some others might. Horses for courses!

This book seems great for those who do fit these disease types though. It contains much more than the usual superfical and commonly given advice. The authors clearly know this topic well and are passionate about the topic.

Jodi Bassett, The Hummingbirds' Foundation for M.E.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book for those struggling with an ICI!, Jan. 15 2004
By 
Shopping Addiction (Cottage Grove, MN United States) - See all my reviews
I have 2 ICI's and I have struggled with a large amount of self doubt and sadness, because of other people's inability to understand what I am dealing with. This book explains the feelings of people with ICI, but the book does not stop there! It also tells you why the feelings come about and how to deal with those feeling. You can tell the book was written by people who understand the feelings of ICI sufferers, because they too are ICI sufferers.
I loved this book!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Validation for what you probably already know, April 23 2002
By 
"dannonb" (Atlanta, GA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Sick And Tired Of Feeling Sick And Tired (Paperback)
Unlike a lot of books with this theme, this one seems to do a good job of ferreting out the different ways that people deal with chronic illness. It is appropriate for most people with chronic illness, although it does focus on "invisible chronic illness". I was impressed that there were few places that made me want to roll my eyes and toss the book across the room. Usually books like this are filled with cheesy advice, such as "take time out for yourself" and "a good bubble bath can do wonders for your psyche". This one is written on a more intelligent level and talks about the real issues and challenges that face people with chronic illness and their caregivers.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Even my Dr. wants to read it!, Aug. 23 2000
By 
G. Jordan "ginazone" (Adirondacks, NY) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Hello, I have been diagnosed with several "invisible" chronic illnesses, meaning the symptoms are subjective for the most part and hard for others to "see" my pain and illness, therefore it is hard to get the support I need.
This book totally understands my experience, it validates every thing that has happened since I was diagnosed, and it helps me get the support I need. It is also excellent to give to others who you want to understand what you're going through. After reading this book, it will be impossible for anyone to ever say again "but you LOOK good".
I had an appt. with a doctor the other day and he saw the book in my hand and asked to look at it. He asked my opinion on it and said he had heard it was a great book. So I of course gushed on and on about it, how the authors truly understand the effects if ICI on our self-esteem, self-concept, the guilt and shame, the frustrations, the lack of support and the suspicion we are often confronted with because our symptoms are not visible (we don't have a wheel chair or a cane, or an easily recognizable condition). So he's going to buy it so he can understand what his patients are going through and be more helpful to them!
Next I am passing this book onto my husband, might buy a few copies for relatives for Christmas and sending the link to the members of my chronic pain support group. Pass the word, this is the book that will finally change how the world responds to us.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A Great First Stop for just diagnosed, July 10 2000
By 
drdebs (CA United States) - See all my reviews
I was reminded how wonderful this book was when I picked up a copy for a friend who has just been diagnosed with an invisible chronic illness. One day, you go to the doctor and your whole life changes--forever. That's what it's like to be diagnosed with an ICI (MS, Lupus, thyroid conditions, Lyme Disease, etc.), and it can be an awfully difficult experience. The authors of this book have tried to put together some coping skills and have identified common responses to having one of these conditions, based on their own medical situation (both have ICI conditions) and their professional expertise as psychologists.
The real purpose of this book is to help people whose conditions are "invisible," and therefore ignored or underplayed in their daily lives and relationships. I would imagine that anyone who has an ICI has experienced at least once the "You're sick? You look all pink and healthy!" comment from a well-meaning friend. Actually, it's your medication, your lupus rash, or a chronic fever that gives you that oh-so-rosy glow. If this has ever happened to you or to a loved one, you will get a lot out of reading this book and realizing that you're not alone and that there are ways of coping with your condition.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Practical and Welcome Resource, July 5 2000
By 
Mark J. Driscoll (Cambridge, MA United States) - See all my reviews
This is without a doubt the best book on chronic illness I have ever read. It is written well and is easy to read. You can tell the authors have developed a deep understanding about coping with illness from their own conditions. By giving the book to several people I knew were definitely sick and tired of being that way, I became confident that this is a book you want to read if you need comfort, validation and practical lessons for coping well with a chronic illness. I'm grateful that the authors captured so many things I want to say and want others to understand about being ill all the time.
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2.0 out of 5 stars A Pat Resource, June 30 2000
By 
Courtney L. Lewis "Sassy Librarian" (Kingston, PA USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Donoghue and Siegel are taking a psychological approach to persons with invisible chronic illness, but even so, don't really have much that's new to say. They have the standard chapters on dealing with diagnosis, initially coping with difficult symptoms, how illness affects the family, etc. They also have a chapter on the Health Care system that is typical of chronic illness books and REALLY bothers me - it's the usual tract on being a good patient and what the doctor needs from you. Most of these "types" of chapter acknowledge what you need from a doctor but make a point of saying you aren't likely to get it - a truism, but never easy to hear and it always angers me that in addition to being sick, we have to do all the work for taking charge of our health care too!
This book does have strong points, don't get me wrong. The premise that "consciousness of your story can free you to understand yourself more deeply and to change in directions that make your life more livable" is very true and the authors strongly encourage individual therapy to support people in their quest for mental health during a chronic illness. The chapter on empathic listening is one of the most constructive tools I've seen in this type of book yet, and would be a boon to relationships in which no chronic illness was present! However, with two authors and often disjointed chapters and writing, I wondered about the sophistication of editing this book experienced. My recommendation would be to turn to other sources before consulting this one.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Not Just for the Chronically Ill, March 19 2000
By A Customer
During 25 years of practice in clinical psychology I have found few books as helpful as this one. It does what I have always held to be the central idea of my work; to integrate compassion and encouragement with creative guidelines and practical information. Besides illuminating the physical, emotional,and social consequences of baffling chronic illnesses, the book so successfully describes creative responses to emotional challenges that I often recommend it to my physically healthy patients who have found it a valuable resource in their search for improved personal communication, deeper self-acceptance, and creativity. As one of my chronically ill patients described the book; "It's at once a great reference book for the ill and a guide to healthy living."
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4.0 out of 5 stars It helped me deal with my Crohns emotionally..., Jan. 12 2000
By A Customer
I was eating healthy, exercising regularly, and getting plenty of rest - but because of my Cronic Illness, I constantly felt tired. When I came across the tittle in a book store - I had to pick it up and read it. The book has helped me deal with the emotional side of Crohns. It was great to read a book and be constantly able to say to myself - yes, thats exactly what I have felt. It was great to know I was not alone, and this book has given me greater self confidence with my cronic illness (Crohns). Many thanks to the authors for a job well done.
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Sick And Tired Of Feeling Sick And Tired
Sick And Tired Of Feeling Sick And Tired by Mary E Siegel (Paperback - Oct. 5 2000)
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