Fibromyalgia Can Have a Negative Impact on Relationships

C. Price

Written by: C. Price

C. Price

C. Price is part of DatingAdvice.com's content team. She writes advice articles, how-to guides, and studies — all relating to dating, relationships, love, sex, and more.

Edited by: Lillian Castro

Lillian Castro

Lillian Guevara-Castro brings more than 30 years of journalism experience to ensure DatingAdvice articles have been edited for overall clarity, accuracy, and reader engagement. She has worked at The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, The Gwinnett Daily News, and The Gainesville Sun covering lifestyle topics.

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Can chronic illness negatively impact an individual’s relationships? A new study suggests just that.

The study looked at 6,126 adults suffering from fibromyalgia, a chronic illness where individuals regularly, and randomly, experience pain and extreme tenderness throughout their entire body.

Participants were asked to discuss the impact their illness had on their relationships, with an emphasis on their romantic relationships.


“More than half of the survey’s respondents stated

their relationships suffered mild to moderate damage.”

While relationships with “children and close friends” were also “negatively impacted for a substantial minority of participants,” far more admitted their fibromyalgia contributed to significant problems with their romantic partnerships.

More than half of the survey’s respondents stated their relationships either suffered mild-to-moderate damage or ended in a breakup due to their illness. Half of respondents also stated they currently felt dissatisfied within their relationship due, at least partially, to symptoms of their illness.

Most of these relationship-threatening symptoms related to fibromyalgia commonly cause mood disturbances in addition to advanced levels of physical pain and discomfort.

While fibromyalgia has long been linked to “impairments in activities of daily living and work,” this was one of the first studies to look at the impact of the chronic illness on romantic relationships.

Source: NCBI.com. Photo source: thirdage.com

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