Connect with others who understand.

sign up log in
Resources
About MyEpilepsyTeam

Connect with others who understand.

sign up log in
Resources
About MyEpilepsyTeam

Tap Into the Power of Directness: Use "I"

Posted on August 16, 2019

Living with epilepsy can mean having limited energy, time, and bandwidth. You may find yourself needing to say "no" more often than you did before you developed a seizure disorder. Do you have a tough time being direct with others about how you feel? It's not unusual to feel awkward or self-centered when turning down a request or an invitation. You may feel at the mercy of the other person's need.

Using "I" statements can help put you back in the driver's seat of the situation. An "I" statement directly communicates your feelings and sets a clear boundary, allowing you to focus on avoiding seizure triggers and managing epilepsy-related symptoms like fatigue or nausea.
For instance:

I don't feel like going.
I'd rather do something else instead.
I can't do it this week.
Whenever I attend that event, it takes me days to recover.

At first, you may feel vulnerable about using direct "I" statements when saying no. Your true feelings are exposed, and you may be judged for using epilepsy as an excuse. "I" statements can also be freeing! You don't need to pretend or tell a white lie. It's ok to communicate directly about what you need.

Using an "I" statement is a way of taking responsibility for your feelings. You are not blaming or accusing the other person. You are being honest about your needs and making sure they are recognized.

Members of MyEpilepsyTeam shared some of their experiences with communicating directly:

"Today like every other day is about everyone else and me catering to their needs and wants."

"I have to pretend I'm fine."

"If you think something is wrong, speak up because no one will do it for you!"

Have you used "I" statements to set boundaries? How did it feel?
Share your stories about direct communication in the comments below or on MyEpilepsyTeam.

All updates must be accompanied by text or a picture.

Related articles

Depression and epilepsy share a strong connection.

Depression and Epilepsy: What’s the Connection?

Depression and epilepsy share a strong connection.
Because the physical impact of epilepsy can be all-consuming, you may be dealing with...

How Epilepsy Can Affect Your Mental Health

Because the physical impact of epilepsy can be all-consuming, you may be dealing with...
Those of us living with pre-existing health conditions like epilepsy have likely felt the impact...

Canceling Is Kindness: Keeping Safe From COVID-19 With Epilepsy

Those of us living with pre-existing health conditions like epilepsy have likely felt the impact...
This time of the year can be overwhelming with expectations around the holidays, and living with...

Practicing Gratitude with Epilepsy

This time of the year can be overwhelming with expectations around the holidays, and living with...
Keeping promises to yourself is a way to focus on self-nurture. This could mean making a...

Who’s the One Person You Should Always Keep Your Promise To?

Keeping promises to yourself is a way to focus on self-nurture. This could mean making a...
Have you ever put someone else’s needs ahead of your own? We all do it - we’re human, after all....

Putting Yourself First

Have you ever put someone else’s needs ahead of your own? We all do it - we’re human, after all....

Recent articles

Epilepsy treatments — including surgical interventions — have become more advanced and effective...

Minimally Invasive Epilepsy Surgery: Cutting-Edge Treatments

Epilepsy treatments — including surgical interventions — have become more advanced and effective...
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder, meaning it...

ADHD and Epilepsy: What’s the Connection?

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder, meaning it...
In partnership with American Medical ID

3 Reasons To Wear an Epilepsy Medical ID Bracelet

In partnership with American Medical ID
Although epileptic seizures can occur randomly and without warning, many people find that their seizures are caused by specific triggers.

10 Common Seizure Triggers and 9 Tips To Avoid Them

Although epileptic seizures can occur randomly and without warning, many people find that their seizures are caused by specific triggers.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved updated boosters for messenger RNA...

New COVID-19 Vaccine Boosters for Omicron: What To Know if You Have Epilepsy

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved updated boosters for messenger RNA...
Epilepsy is one of the most common neurological disorders in the world. There are more than 50...

Photosensitive Epilepsy: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment

Epilepsy is one of the most common neurological disorders in the world. There are more than 50...
MyEpilepsyTeam My epilepsy Team

Thank you for subscribing!

Become a member to get even more:

sign up for free

close