National Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week

National Invisible Illness Week Features Virtual Conference This Week

National Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week is September 10-16, 2012 and this week, Monday through Friday, the campaign features a virtual conference with nearly twenty speakers.

 
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San Diego, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 09/10/2012 -- Listeners can log on to http://InvisibleIllnessConference.com to listen to presentations by experts who work with those who are chronically ill, or who live with illness themselves. The seminars will also be available at itunes.com this fall.

Topics include how your personality style affects how you cope with illness, parenting with a chronic illness, how to work at home when chronically ill, improving your marriage relationship despite illness, and the whole “invisible” illness issue.

Speakers include Mary E. Siegel, PhD, co-author of the modern-classic, "Sick and Tired of Feeling Sick and Tired," best-selling author Pam Farrel, of 26 titles including "Men Are Like Waffles, Women Are Like Spaghetti," Wayne and Sherri Connell, founders of Invisible Disabilities Advocate, and chronic illness coach, Rosalind Joffe.

With over 20 speakers from all over the country, the workshops offered are a chance for those with illness --who can rarely travel long distances or sit for extended periods of time--to participate. Founder and coordinator of Invisible Illness Awareness Week, Lisa Copen, says, "Virtual conferences are a seamless fit for those of us who live with chronic illness. You can wear your pajamas, snuggle up with a heating pad, and even hold your pet, and still be a part of something that connects you to people and improves your coping skills for dealing with daily illness."

Copen, who began this week in 2002, is the founder of Rest Ministries that serves the chronically ill. She is the author of various books on chronic illness, including, “Beyond Casseroles: 505 Ways to Encourage a Chronically Ill Friend.” She says that many people who have invisible illnesses are told "But you look so good!" and although they know it is meant as a compliment, it feels like they are being told their illness isn't really that bad, or they are making a big deal out of nothing.

"Nearly 1 in 2 people live with a chronic condition in the USA," shares Copen, "and over 90 percent, have no visible signs that display pain, fatigue, or limitations. Invisible illness can make you feel like you are living two different lives, the reality of struggling to get through the most basic tasks, like making a meal or having a play date for your child, and the reality of what everyone believes you are capable of."

Copen says events such as Invisible Illness Awareness Week help encourage those who live with hidden pain that they are not alone, as well as give them an opportunity to gently educate those around them about their disease.

Invisible Illness Week offers many other ways to get involved including blogging for the cause, sharing invisible illness week facts on Twitter or Facebook, a Pinterest page, and the 2012 campaign includes posting your favorite photos that represent your "visible images of hope."

To find out more visit the web site http://InvisibleIllnessWeek.com .