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Date: 26.04.2014
From: Sue

Subject: advice for a family member about overdoing things

I have RA and osteoarthritis myself but recently my older sister has had increasing problems with osteoarthritis and osteoporosis, all in the family.
The difficulty is my sister, who has just turned 70yrs insists on pushing an acquaintance of hers around in a wheelchair. This person is quite large and my sister is considerably smaller. This person is more able than my sister but refuses to do anything for themselves.
Myself and other family members have tried to dissuade my sister from pushing the chair as it is putting extra strain on her joints and there is the added risk due to the osteoporosis.
This person can walk reasonable distances but has my sister pushing them up and down slopes, into shops, up kerbs.
Recently my sister was given wrist splints but won't wear them because this person gets upset that she hasn't got them.

How can we get it over to her she isn't helping herself, her arthritis has definitely taken a turn for the worse, now in her knees.
I was diagnosed about 20yrs ago and 10yrs younger than my sister. Up until the last year or so she was doinig well, but has had a lot of trouble with the pain. She told me she had gone to see a friend and couldn't walk home.
Is there anything we can show her to demonstrate the strain she is putting her body under pushing a 16 stone woman around. My sister is just under 5 foot and about 9 stones.
We are all really worried about her.
Thanks in advance for any ideas, we are running out of them.
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Date: 26.04.2014
From: marlene

Subject: Re: advice for a family member about overdoing things

Hi Sue, try a different approach. How about you are not really helping your friend exercise is the best medicine for her. She will just pile on more weight if she doesn't exercise a little bit.
It is so hard when you see a family member being taken advantage of. I believe at some stage your sister will realise for her self.
Have you tried going to a GP appointment with her and mentioning it to the gp just casual.
Sue I hope you can get it all sorted soon and your sister takes more time for herself. I have OA and have had it since my 30s and I can't imagine me pushing anyone in a wheelchair.
Take care xx
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