Autoimmune Stories

While the most recent statistics tell us that autoimmune disease affects at least 14.7 to 23.5 million Americans, research indicates that the numbers have been growing steadily for years.

The unifying link between these 90 diseases and counting, is the immune system’s inability to differentiate between self and non-self, resulting in systemic or organ-specific attack. 

No one case of autoimmunity is alike, as symptoms vary widely even within a particular disease, such as celiac, lupus, or ulcerative colitis. On top of this, there are many individuals with autoimmune-like symptoms who are unable to secure a diagnosis. 

Each one of these stories serves as a window into the complexities of living with chronic illness

Coping is a daily challenge, and it is common for people to feel unseen and unheard both in their social lives and in the medical world.

It is our hope for these stories to cushion the loneliness often felt by individuals with autoimmune disease, and to give caregivers and loved ones valuable insight into what they may be going through.

Want to share your own personal story? Scroll down for writing prompts and more info on how to be featured.

Woman grocery shopping for healthy foods illustration

Autoimmune Stories:

When Food Sensitivities Catch You Off Guard

Margaux Thieme-Burdette January 26, 2020

Step into Margaux’s life as she deals with an unexpected reaction, and shares tools that keep her moving forward.

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Mother with her baby

Autoimmune Stories:

Chronic Illness, Pregnancy, Motherhood, and Healing

Beth Chen May 1, 2019

After developing an illness on a cruise, Beth Chen’s health was never the same…

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Share Your Autoimmune Story

It’s a powerful way to tap into the community and inspire others, while also reflecting on your own experiences.

We invite you to write and share your unique journey with autoimmune disease or chronic illness and what you’ve discovered along the way.

Below is a set of prompts to help you write a brief but colorful snapshot of your journey. Head over to our guide on How to Tell Your Chronic Illness Story for more prompts, inspiration, and writing tips!

 

WRITING PROMPTS:

• Say something unique about yourself. It could be anything – hobbies, favorite places or foods, fun memories, your quirks/dreams/fears, etc.

When did you realize something was wrong? How did it make you feel?

• Describe your diagnosis and/or symptoms

• Explain how your health condition changed the way you live – what are the biggest challenges you experience?

• What has living with a chronic illness taught you?

• Give one piece of advice to someone who has recently been diagnosed or who’s experiencing chronic health issues

• Name one thing you’d like people to know about living with chronic illness

If you’d like to be featured, submit your story (or any questions you have) to margaux@autoimmuneinstitute.org or through the Contact Us page.

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Please note: by submitting a story you acknowledge that you are 18 years of age and that you have read and agree to the terms and conditions, including User Submission Release Agreement, which are found in the Privacy Policy. Submitting your story grants the Global Autoimmune Institute, its affiliates, and licensees permission to edit your story and to publish it online and on social media. Your personal information will not be shared or sold to third parties.

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