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  • sereniti1952
    Hi. I just joined this group because my sister was diagnosed with MS in October and I'm at a loss as to how to help. I live in California and she lives in Florida. We're both in our mid-60s. We haven't been close for many years, but in the last six months have begun to work out our differences and are growing closer. The more I learn about MS, the more helpless and scared I feel.

    What do I do now?
  • MS_Navigators
    Hi there, I'm sorry to hear that your sister was diagnosed with MS.  MS affects people differently (such as symptoms, severity), though I believe there may be similar themes that people experience when coping with a new diagnosis.  My advice would be to talk with your sister, find out what she needs from you right now.  We have a section of our website dedicated to family members which may help a bit: https://www.nationalmssociety.org/Living-Well-With-MS/Relationships/Family-Matters
  • sereniti1952

    MS_Navigators wrote: Hi there, I'm sorry to hear that your sister was diagnosed with MS.  MS affects people differently (such as symptoms, severity), though I believe there may be similar themes that people experience when coping with a new diagnosis.  My advice would be to talk with your sister, find out what she needs from you right now.  We have a section of our website dedicated to family members which may help a bit: https://www.nationalmssociety.org/Living-Well-With-MS/Relationships/Family-Matters


    Thank you for the link, lots of helpful stuff there! My sister and I are in solid communications and closer than we've been in a long time. I understand her disease almost as much as she does - which isn't much at this point.

    Because it's such an early diagnosis, and there are so many of her symptoms that are explained equallly by MS and the Agent Orange and PCB exposures in her youth (which may or may not also explain the MS itself!), that the focus is determining which symptoms are MS and whi\ch are something else so a treatment plan (olr plans), can be started. And I feel completely helpless and impotent.
     

  • gabrielle519
    I agree with the MS navigator your sister just needs your support and to know that you are there for her. She might just need someone to talk too.
  • maria1
    sereniti, we have, each of us, experienced the helplessness firsthand. And with our knowledge growth each day, have become more useful in living with ms. We overcome the strangeness and newness each day. As it says at the bottom of the papge, Knowledge is Power, and we grow more powerful as we expand our knowledge of life with ms, even though some days are not fun.