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“Suffering the Silence” during Arthritis Awareness Month

A picture of Cheryl Koehn

Dear ACE community members,

I’ve had rheumatoid arthritis for over a quarter century now, and I’m sick of it.

Canadians living with one of over 100 types of arthritis are told to understand that what they have is “just arthritis.” They are frustrated by the self-management routine they are supposed to be “in charge of” because they don’t have access to the very things they are supposed to self-manage with. They’re discouraged to read about other important diseases in the media spotlight, but not their own. They’re saddened that yet another Arthritis Month in Canada has begun without a cure for any type of arthritis. That’s how I feel, too. What about you?

Our community continues to face significant barriers to elevating arthritis with the public, governments and workplaces across the country where the havoc wreaked by the diseases is still underestimated and poorly understood.

Well, I’ve had enough. We can’t passively accept arthritis. It maims and kills, but people seem afraid to say that. I’m going to start saying it in my life and in my work.

I am rheumatoid arthritis. Who are you?

We need to break through the sound barrier. Please take a moment and tell me, tell your arthritis sisters and brothers, who you are. I want to know. Make millions know.
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