Do you let yourself go...don't care how you look anymore?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Nana61, Jul 28, 2003.

  1. Nana61

    Nana61 New Member

    I find that it is so hard to get up and just put some makeup on, brush my hair, shave my legs, just the ordinary things for good grooming. I get so depressed, I just don't seem to care anymore. My arms are so weak and my right arm starts to spasm when I reach up to just brush my hair. I think what's the use but I know that I should do these things, if for no other reason than to make me feel better. Does anyone else have this problem? I would be greatful for any response. Thanks, Nana/Jan
  2. pikrosonly

    pikrosonly New Member

    i think i have the same problem...
    it's like sinking in a quicksand
    the more you let yourself go..
    the further down you'll go and the harder it is for you to come back
    lookin into the mirror right now is kind of offending
    and i think my room smalls bad
    i don't want to see anybody anymore either
    cuz talkin the way i am talkin right now seems to upset people...^^...
    maybe ... if you have someone whom you can trust
    try talk to her/him about it
    sorry that i can't help you...
  3. Seagull

    Seagull New Member

    I often have to skip a day or two between showers because of the fatigue and pain in getting in and out of the tub or handling the washcloth or toweling off. On days inbetween, I use some of those bath wipes that you do not need to rinse off after using.

    When I do feel up to taking a shower, I have to decide if I am going to go anywhere because I have to make a choice between shaving my legs and underarms or washing my hair -- I cannot do both in the same shower. I just do not have the energy and reaching up to wash my hair is a guarantee that I will have new knots and spasms in my shoulders, upper back, pecs, and arm muscles when I am done.

    If I have been able to wash my hair, I have to leave it wrapped in a towel for 2 or more hours so that as much water as possible is absorbed before I try to blowdry it. Otherwise, it would take me a half-hour or longer to dry and the blowdryer is too heavy for me to hold that long, and I would not have the energy to do so anyway. When I use the blowdryer afterwards, it then only takes me about 5 or so minutes to finish with that, but I have to be sitting down the whole time because I am too tired to stand up while doing it.

    As for makeup, I gave that up years ago when I first got hit with these DDs -- too much pain in my arms and hands to apply it. I also had to give up my contact lenses for the same reasons. And, I hate wearing glasses, but they don't bother my hands and arms to put them on.

    I have not worn a bra in years, either. Much too painful no matter how soft or loose-fitting. Luckily, I am not that big so it doesn't show normally. At home, I live in loose-fitting t-shirts and pajama pants so do not need anything under those anyway. If I have to go somewhere, I use loose-fitting camisoles instead. If I have to wear a skirt, all of mine are tea-length or longer, so I get by with just kneehigh hose, instead of pantyhose. My shoes are slip on flats, no heels, for comfort.

    Anyway, these are some things that work for me and I really do not care how anyone else feels about it. I am doing what I can to cope with my limitations and symptoms. That is all any of us can do. :)

  4. RedB

    RedB New Member

    I truly believe that you are not going to start feeling better until you get some pain medicine in your body to help you get more mobile.

    I would suggest that you might try getting an appointment with a pain specialist who might get you in earlier than your November appointment with a rheumy. The rheumy will probably give you some sort of anti-depressant, that may give you some long-term help, but something to help your pain sooner would be of more use right now.

    Do not feel guilty for asking for pain medicine. You can start with something like Ultram or Neurontin, which are not narcotics. Anti-inflammatories will probably not help with your FM, but it may help your other problems. That, I am not sure of.

    I personally have done 5 1/2 years without any pain meds except Ativan for anxiety, and just a few months with Neurontin. I will NOT go back! Being able to work in your garden for an hour or so is much better than not being able to work in it at all. And, being able to lift your arm is far better than not being able to lift it at all. You become more useful, and therefore, more confident.

    Get yourself more mobile, and THEN try out some of the alternative things that have helped some people on this board. I tried many things for 6 years, and nothing has helped me but my own willpower, and now, the Neurontin, and sublingual Vitamin B-12. Supplements have not been useful, although I take Vitamin E, Multi-vitamin, and Calcium. I don't drink, I never smoked, I don't use salt, I do not have sugar in my house, however, I do eat sweet things, I drink water, and, yes, I drink diet 7-up and root beer, and one cup of coffee in the morning. I eat almost no bread, I do eat dairy, I eat pasta only occasionally, and I eat small amounts of red meat a couple times a week. I have gained weight, and am now 5'9" tall and 154 lbs, but I now longer apologize for my diet. Until I talk personally to FMers who have become WELL from a special diet, I will continue eating what I consider to be a relatively sensitive diet. In your case, if you can figure out if any foods cause you problems, you may want to eliminate them. In my case, I only have pain and tiredness. I do not seem to respond negatively to any foods, because I do not have other illness, and my IBS is under control, mostly because I no longer fear my illness.

    If you find yourself in even a little less pain, the makeup and shaving legs thing will become easier for you. I have always tried to "put on my face" every day if possible. Shaving my long legs is still a nasty venture, but a necessary one. I have a wonderful husband, but I really try to do these things for myself, not necessarily for him. I am one of those light complexioned redheads that has "invisible" eyebrows and eyelashes, so I grew up feeling like I could never leave my house without my makeup. I still try every day to do what I can to make myself presentable, mostly because I can't stand looking at myself if I don't. This, of course, has ruined my credibility of being a "sick" person in front of my doctors, but so be it. However, I would suggest when you go before your new doctors, that you try not to look TOO well. Unfortunately, doctors are a pain. You have to play their game.

    Please keep us posted on how you are doing.


  5. Snorlax

    Snorlax New Member

    I am just starting to find out about "I just don't care". I was healthy and stronge. was in the Army but very feminine. I exercised. Ate right all because I din't want to inheirit? diabetes. So what do I get Fib. I don't care is I get fat. I don't care what I eaat even if it is a toxic food for me. I don't take care of my family. I have lost my life. Sorry so depressing. I hope somedday that I will care again. I'm just grateful that I have a husband and children who a sticking by me right now. Maby we are suspossed to learn something from this. I wish I could find an answere. Hang in there. Snorlax
  6. bibby

    bibby New Member

    Have this problem especially on the weekends. I'm still working at this time so during the week I have to drag myself up and try to look decent for work but I do not make the effort I used to. I just feel so bad that I just don't seem to care anymore. After I drag myself to work all week, on Friday afternoon I race home and fall into bed and don't get up unless I have to. I know I need to make more of an effort but right now I'm just doing what I have to.
    One thing I'm glad of is this support sight. It so very good to know I'm not the only one out there struggling.

  7. Aeryn

    Aeryn New Member


    This is probably unneeded advice on helping yourself look better. Thank God, I am not in your situation, but I know how much better I feel when I look good even if I am just staying at home. I felt I wanted to suggest the following, but I realize my solutions can be moderately expensive and require getting out of the house once a month. Forgive me if this advice is too much for you in any way.

    It might help if you cut your hair very very short. I know I don't often have the energy or patience to blow dry my hair. I have very short hair that dries in a minute to a cute little style that doesn't even need a brush.

    Also, the less you wash your hair--if it is short--the less you need to. The oils in your scalp will slow down their production if they are not washed off everyday. I find it is possible to go 3 days without looking greasy.

    You can get your eyelashes dyed so you have automatic mascara on all the time. No need for make-up. Just enough definition to make you look neat. It lasts a month.

    If you can stand the pain, many here cannot, it is good to get your legs and underarms waxed. It lasts about a month. I usually take some ibuprofen before I go. You can get your eyebrows tweezed and your eyelashes dyed at the same time.

    I wonder if there are any charitible institutions in your town (a church, synagogue, mosque, community center) that would have voluteers who might help you get out to do these things? Or maybe there is someone who will be kind enough simply to come by to help you wash your hair and get dressed?

    Again forgive me if this advice is pushy. I feel uncomfortable offering it. I hope you feel well enough just for the little things, it matters so much over all.


  8. Hippo

    Hippo New Member

    I wear loose-fitting clothes and sneakers because of the pain. I don't wear makeup at all, ever, and seem to get by fine without it. People have suggested to me that I would feel better if I wore makeup, but I don't find this to be true. I have cut my hair short and wash it every other day. I don't have the strength to hold a blow-dryer. I just wash it and let it air-dry. Shaving my legs is the hardest, and if I can't do it, I just wear long pants.

    [This Message was Edited on 07/28/2003]
  9. Nana61

    Nana61 New Member

    I am so glad I found this board. To have found people like yourself who are feeling the same things you are is uplifting in itself. If you had to go through this and never have someone you can confide in would be a living he**. Above all, we do have our faith in God, which I seem to forget some times.

    I am going back to my GP Aug. 8 and going to try to impress on him how I do need some pain meds. to have some quality of life. Right now the quality of my life is not very good.

    Again, I want to thank all of you for your encouragement.
    All of you who are down and depressed like I am, lets try to perk up and do better for each other and ourselves.

    God Bless, Jan C.
  10. Jen F

    Jen F New Member

    Hi Nana, I hope you start to feel better soon, and if you need pain meds I definitely hope you get them.

    I hardly ever bother with makeup anymore, don't wash my hair that often, rarely paint my nails or get a haircut.

    I don't have much energy, not enough to keep my apt clean and do all my own cooking, so I make a conscious choice to use my limited energy for those type of things rather than spending half an hour styling my hair.

    I occasionally make the effort cause it feels good to look nice for a change, but it is hard [and sometimes impossible] on my arms to blow dry and style my hair, and spending the time on makeup, etc definitely creates more lack in other areas of my life. And besides, I don't know what to do with the men I attract when I go out lookin' fine!! I don't have much energy right now for dating and I worry that these men have seen me at my best, which is not usually what I look like, they are in for a shock when they see me traipsing out to the corner store in my sweats with unwashed hair, no makeup, and the unconcealed black bags under my eyes. I wouldn't like to see the mild shock in their eyes, lol!!

    So, I am trying to do what I can to help myself, to help my pain and increase my energy and hopefully I will be able to spend more time on my grooming in the near future without it taking up valuable energy I need for cooking, etc. for now, it's not a high priority.

    For those who ARE able to maintain their home and cooking, I think it's a matter of balance. If you are really really fatigued, I don't think the usual grooming should be necessary. As long as you are able to do a quick wash in the important places and can do a full shower at least once or twice a week, there are more important things in life than makeup, IMO.

    If you are not doing these things because you are depressed, then that's a different problem that needs to be addressed.

    But, as you can tell already, you are not alone.
  11. jadibeler

    jadibeler New Member

    I haven't cared how I look for the last couple of years. I used to make sure I had on nice clothes and at least lipstick when I left the house, no matter where I was going. I've never been able to do anything with my hair, just because it won't even take a perm and it won't stay curled no matter what. I did have it cut short, just because of the heat, but it looked even worse, it's so straight.

    Now I just pull it back in pony tails and barrettes. I haven't a clue where my make up is. I carry lipstick but never put it on. I change into nice clothes if I'm going into a store (I usually stay in my nightgown all day). But if I'm in old shorts and t-shirt and just going to a friend's house, I don't change. Too much trouble.

    I really, truly don't care. Maybe if I were single I'd make the effort, but I wouldn't want any more relationships so maybe not. I'm too tired to go out at night, as much as I love eating in restaurants. I do love to get dressed up but I don't do anything to require it because I'm too tired to go. Also, I guess because I'm pushing 60 I feel it just doesn't matter anymore.

  12. Shirl

    Shirl New Member

    I do agree with Jelly on this one completely. If you start letting yourself go, it will be very hard to come back to normal with your appearance.

    As much as I like my house in order, I will take care of myself first, the house last.

    My hair is the biggest problem, so I learned how to deal with it before anything else. I take the 'hard' job first, then the other jobs fall into line more easily.

    Before I get out of the bed for the day, I sit with my back on my mound of pillows and brush my hair, braid it, pull it up, or back with a hairband. I have hair down to my waist, to cut it short would be to give in to this illness or even make it harder to deal with.
    If you brush that hair every morning and before bed, it keeps it more or less clean and tangle free (I brush it at night in the bed too, in fact I have a brush in the nightable drawer).

    I wash it once a week, or if I am going out, then the day before the event. If the weather is nice, I will sit outside and let it sun dry, all the while running a wide tooth comb through it, with my head down so my arms don't hurt.
    Only when it is cold or raining do I use the blowdryer. (I do not wash my hair in the shower, I can't do that anymore, so I wash it by the kitchen sink, I had my husband put in a sink that has a deep side just to wash my hair, and I use a footstool to stand on, helps take the stress off my back, if you have laundry tubs in your utilityroom they are even better for washing your hair).

    I take short showers, staying long in water, be it shower or bath is very tiring for me. I try to take that bath/shower around 6pm, not too late as I am very tired at night.

    Mornings are out, I would drown in a cup full of water I am so groggy in the morning. If I am too sick to get in the tub, I do the 'cat' bath thing by the sink, all the main parts!
    Instead of towels, I use a mans size terry bathrobe to dry myself, that way I can throw it over the hanger to dry out and just wash it once a week instead of having a whole batch of towels to wash.

    I always use baby wipes for toilet times, therefore I am always clean, like the 'babys bottom' so to speak.

    This would stop odor before it started. If I sweat, I use baby wipes so an not to get stinky to wipe my face and underarms during the day. If I am too sick for a bath, then I am not going to get stinky too quickly!

    I NEVER stay in my night clothes, I would feel sick in pj's , robe and slippers all day. I can't do that.

    I have clothes in order for the week for the house, I put an outfit out at night for the morning. I can't stand things that don't match, so I wash them in order of colors, and hang them by pants/shirts/shorts for the week.

    (all underwear is in the same bathroom that I use in a Lingerie chest, this way I don't have to run to the bedroom then back to the bathroom, everything I need is in that bathroom for the bath and the under things, brush, cream, etc.).

    I forgo make up at home, unless I am having company or going out. But I have all I need in one makeup kit so that I don't have to be looking for anything when its time to do a makeup job, I can take it to any room I want and its all there!

    Nails and toe nails are a once a week thing too, unless I am going out, so are plucking eyebrows. Unless I am in a whole lot of pain, I try not to let anything get ahead of me. It only makes it harder to catch up.
    I keep nail files all over the house, can't stand a snagged nail, so I do not have to run all over looking for one.

    As for a bra, I don't have big boobs, so I just hang the dang thing on the arm of the computer chair, if I have to go to the mailbox, or someone is knocking I just grab it, its just a little strapless one, so its easy to get on and off.

    Here is the strange thing about me, I live in the country, my husband is gone weeks at a time, my kids are grown and live a distance away, I am not much on neighbors running in and out (too stressful to deal with anymore), you can't see my house for the woods in front and back, I have an 8' steel fence on both sides of my property, 6'foot gated fence in front, and the mailbox is 300ft from the front door.

    I sometimes don't see another person for a week or two, yet I go through my routine everyday just like I was expecting company.

    So you see, I really do all this for 'myself', my well being, or is it ego?? Who knows? but it makes ME feel good that I do not look like a hag or rag, its important to be ME at all times.

    Do you know even my night clothes match? My robe and slippers have to coordinate with my gown or pj's! If not, I am miserable.

    I have to be ME, sick or well. It does make a difference, if I didn't do all the above for myself, I would probably just die. I would not want to live. Strange, but this is the real me. I like myself and I want to be myself as much as humanly possible.

    So you start by liking 'Jan', and take care of her like she is the best person in the whole world, which you are!

    This is a long answer to a short question, but you need to understand how taking care of yourself is so important for you peace of mind, and your health.

    A healthy mind is on the way to a healthy body. Don't give up, just start thinking about how to make these daily things easier for you to do, and do them!

    If I live to be a 100, I would still do the same things if at all possible.

    Take care, and start looking pretty again, for YOU! Do not let this illness steal that away from you too.

    I will be waiting to hear that you are taking care of yourself again. I am serious.
    If you lived near me I would be at your door chasing you around to get your act together right now!

    Shalom, Shirl

  13. GooGooGirl

    GooGooGirl New Member

    On top of the 50 pounds that I have gained, I don't take care of myself like I used to. I rarely ever pluck my eyebrows. I wash my hair twice a week. Before I got sick I used to wash, blow dry and curl my hair every single day.
    That would be impossible now. I also used to shower or bathe every day. Now it's every other with "washing up" in between. I shave my legs maybe once a week or once every 10 days. I wear pants to work every day, whereas I used to wear skirts with pantyhose and heels (how did I ever do that - I think if I tried to put on a pair of pantyhose I might fall over trying to get them up!!). I wear make up, only because I would scare everyone in the office if I ever came in without it, hahaha... but when I am home, I don't do a thing to myself and stay in my "schmata" (house dress) all day.
  14. Nana61

    Nana61 New Member

    your last paragraph made me chuckle. THANKS! I can just picture you running me around the house and making me straigten my act up, quite a visual.
    I promise I will try to do better. I used to always take pride being well groomed. I wouldn't even go to the mail box (mines not as far as yours) without having my makeup on.
    Such a big difference, but then, this disease has changed my life 'til it isn't recognizeable to me anymore.
    If you have read my profile, you can see whnt a joy my (work) was to me. Well, smack (owe), I'm getting on the pity pot, so I need to hush. Bless you, and thank you for responding. JanC
  15. kredca4

    kredca4 New Member

    Bad enough that I have to feel Lousy, I refuse to look Lousy, now as they say tho, Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so someone looking at me might not think I look all that good. But I find if I do my best, I feel so much better inside.
    So I wear Makeup, still can dye my hair, and I have a nice pair of sunglasse's to Hide behind on my bad day's. lol

    I do moisturzie my skin, and wear at least an SPF of 15-to 30, depending on the weather.

    I wear dress's most of the time anyway, because then I don't have to wear undie's, and that Helps the IBS.

    Then there are day's when I can't even bathe myself and wash my hair, so I hide out in the bedroom on thoes day's, lol.

  16. todayisagift

    todayisagift New Member

    yup I definitely do that, I'm 22 and I should be getting dressed nicely etc but I wear comfortable clothing instead of looking nice. My mom tries to buy me clothes and tries to get me to wear makeup but most of the time I'm just too tired for it. Most of the time I don't even feel like taking a shower, how sad is that.
  17. Donna39

    Donna39 New Member

    I totally agree with you on this one.The first thing that I do in the morning is fix my face,make-up,etc.....Whoops-I lied.I meant after I drink my coffee.How you look definitely
    has an impact on how you will feel that day.Any how, all my energy is in the morning.So I get up at 5 am,thats because its so peaceful then,everyone else is still sleeping.Its my quiet time.I have tried sleeping later,till 7 or so,but found out that I felt so bad getting up at that time,so 5 am works for me.I have learned also that if I have a good morning the rest of the day seems a little more sunnier.
    But if it starts out stressful,I might as well forget it.
    Anyone agree?
  18. nancyw

    nancyw New Member

    I have definitely done this for about the last two years. I used to do shower, make-up, hair, etc. every day. I stopped wearing make-up about 2 years ago and only shower every other to third day - I'm just too tired (both physically and emotionally). I am not working right now (except from home on college course) so I don't go out a lot. My cats and grandkids don't really care how I look and that's just fine with me for now. I do agree you usually feel better when you look better, but I simply don't care most of the time. It is not a priority for me. I know people that haven't seen me for a while are usually shocked as to how I've changed. OK, now I'm depressing myself so I'll stop. Good luck, Nana61! My name is "Nana" too, and my little darlings keep my spirits up and give me the unconditional love I need to keep going.

    EZBRUZR New Member

    This Board is Great! I have questioned what I thought my lack of desire for self was caused by. Now the light went on! It IS to hard somedays to put in the energy,and one does need to priorities. I feel for myself,I am of a background one MUST present well at all time.This causes stress , I feel the harsh judgements for not are too hard to deal with.I realize now,however, I am the one causeing my stress! If I didn't look proper ,*they* could see I am in pain and hurt. Putting myself,through maybe 1/2 would be a nice balance. I'd feel good,but not to exhausted and irritable to do anything. Peace, Lisa
  20. tandy

    tandy New Member

    I know I've lost some interest....but I do care and I do get dressed at least 5-6 days a week.....full make-up and all!! But I've toned it down alot.I just touch up my face.,no eye liner...just lipstick and a bronzer~ (easier) My showers are fast ones(quickies!) And I had to laugh about shaving legs!! That is thee worst job!! so I don't shave as often as I should. The other day I went to our city parade, I was sitting their in my sand chair near the curbside,(had on was hot out!!)I look down at my could see a big patch of where I missed shaving!!!LMAO well it musta been missed quite alot cause I sware the hairs were a inch long!! Boy was I bummin! neadless to say, I shaved that spot as soon as I go home~ :) guess i'm good now till next month!