and feeling guilty, and feeling like I had to explain or justify why I have pain, and trying to convince people that this is real.... A friend who lives in another state called tonight. When he asked how I was doing...his exact words were "So how is the body doing now?"....my reply was "It's still here, I won't bore you with the details". He came back with "Are you serious? Everytime I talk to you it's a different body part that hurts you. I guess I should just ask you what the pain du jour is". I felt as though he wasn't going to let me off without an explanation, so I told him I had a good Dr., had new diagnoses and was managing it and repeated I wouldn't bore him with details, but he pushed the issue and wanted to know "just how much work have you missed due to this". I told him that I go to work no matter what, I have pain meds to take, and I won't give in to this, figuring this would end this discussion. Then he said to me "If it's not bad enough to miss work it's probably all in your head". I had finally, in the last few weeks, stopped feeling like I owed people explanations. In fact, I became very selective in who I would even talk to about this. I had finally quit feeling guilty for needing to take meds on a more or less regular schedule to keep my pain and stiffness in check, to function normally. I had finally accepted the fact that what is going on with my body is not my fault, and I actually felt pretty good inside about how I am dealing with it; I stopped blaming myself, I've been reading and learning about it, trying things other than meds to help myself, and coming to this board and reading all the posts even though I don't post a lot myself has helped because I know I'm not alone in this. That conversation has really shaken my confidence; I am sitting here feeling guilty all over again, feeling like I'm starting all over to make people believe me. I hate this. It is no wonder people who have illnesses shut other people out, it's not worth the grief.