People with CFS/ME suffer from a number of symptoms that can make reading nearly impossible, such as visual disturbances, headaches, vertigo, and cognitive impairments. These problems can also make watching TV or movies equally as difficult, resulting in a lifestyle that is severely restricted. A person who is too ill to engage in physical activity, and has no recourse to the distractions provided by books and films, may become even more isolated than the illness itself warrants.
Fortunately, there is a simple solution to the problem. Audiobooks provide access to novels and works of non-fiction in a format that does not strain the eyes. In addition, listening to a human voice, especially one that is well modulated, can be quite soothing.
Most libraries have a good selection of audiobooks. But if your library does not, there are several free audiobook services. Itunes has a collection of roughly 5000 titles. Books Should Be Free, has thousands of public domain books which you can listen to for free. Project Gutenberg, which also lists thousands of free public domain works in print, offers human-read audio books in more than sixty different languages. You can browse these by author or by language. Librivox is another free service that offers audiobooks from the public domain.
Even if you don’t have visual processing problems, audiobooks are a delightful way to spend driving time, couch time, or simply to provide a pleasant backdrop for ordinary household tasks.