By A. M. Williams et al.
Chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis can limit functional capacity, producing various degrees of disability and psychological distress. Semi-structured interviews explored the experiences of adults with chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis being physically dependent on other people for help in daily life, and whether physical dependency affects their psychological well-being. Thematic analysis generated six themes: loss of independence and self-identity, an invisible illness, anxieties of today and the future, catch-22, internalised anger, and acceptance of the condition. The findings provide insight into the psychological impact of dependency. Implications for intervention include better education relating to chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis for family members, carers, and friends; ways to communicate their needs to others who may not understand chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis; and awareness that acceptance of the condition could improve psychological well-being.
Source: Williams AM, Christopher G, Jenkinson E. The psychological impact of dependency in adults with chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis: A qualitative exploration. J Health Psychol. 2016 Apr 19. pii: 1359105316643376. [Epub ahead of print]