Talking About COPD
If you think that you are the only one affected by your COPD, think again. When chronic obstructive pulmonary disease becomes a factor for you, it becomes a factor for everyone in your life. These people love you, they are interested in your best interests and they are your best allies in the war against COPD – but only if you can find effective ways to talk about it.
You know this, but telling other people about your illness is confusing, overwhelming and somewhat scary. What do you say? How do you say it? Suddenly, you feel yourself selfishly looking for ways to avoid your responsibilities rather than finding the best options for the people in your life.
Communication is key for you and for them. Follow these tips for telling a loved one about your COPD.
1. Know the Subject
Any conversation you have about COPD will be short and ineffective if you know nothing about the subject. It’s time to imagine you are headed back to school to give a report on COPD. What would your teacher or classmates want to know?
Work to understand that COPD is not one disease. It is actually an umbrella term used when discussing several diseases including emphysema, chronic bronchitis, refractory asthma and some bronchiectasis. Read pamphlets. Ask your doctor questions. Seek out information from people you know with COPD. Search for the best information available online.
You’ll need every resource possible since COPD is a challenging disease to grasp for anyone. People who are hearing the information for the first time will need all of the facts available.