Letter: Chronic fatigue sufferer very ticked with columnist

You call us all lazy, pot smoking, potato chip eaters…maybe you could research and write an article on how unfunded this illness is.

Open letter to Tom Fletcher, Black Press legislative columnist:

I take great resentment at your ignorant, uneducated remarks regarding chronic fatigue Syndrome (Bowing to the Power of Judges, March 2 Kelowna Capital News and Lake Country Calendar).

I have lived with this very painful debilitating condition for over 20 years and, yes, there have been many times that I could hardly get out of bed, many days I have spent in bed, at clinics, hospitals, etc., but I have not and do not sit around smoking pot, eating chips and watching TV.

And no one else has paid my bills nor did I get any disability pension. In fact in my fight to find answers I have spent over $109,000 and that does not include any other expenses traveling to hospitals and doctors our of country.

I had my first income tax paying job at the age of 16 and have worked and paid income tax every year since. I turn 80 years old in July and every hour I am able to move at all I am working as I have my own business interests.

And you have the uneducated nerve to suggest that anyone who suffers with this illness is “what we used to call laziness.” Well, Mr. Fletcher, not that I have to report to you, I am not and have not ever been lazy. All of my years of hard work have resulted in the CRA taking away my OAS. And you have the nerve to refer to me as lazy.

Could you—no you could not—imagine what it would be like to have pain every day of your life for 20 years, feel like you have the flu everyday of your life. Wake up in the morning in pain, spend the day in pain, go to bed in pain, wake up during the night in pain, then start all over again. And no matter how hard you try not how much you pay, no medical person can tell us what infection or whatever causes all of this.

And if you are so fast to infer that it only makes common sense to call us all a bunch of lazy pot smoking, potato chip eaters, maybe you could research and write an article on how unfunded this illness is. Better yet, if you are so well informed, could you ‘identify’ what causes this illness other than mere “laziness.”

Failing the above, maybe you should do some research and send a public apology to all of us for making your unjust, erroneous public announcement.

Marion Berg, Kelowna

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