No Cure for a Bad Attitude | Letters | Chicago Reader

No Cure for a Bad Attitude 


As a person with multiple sclerosis, I read last week's cover story ["Can Bee Stings Cure MS?" August 22] with steadily increasing dismay. Whether or not bee venom is a viable therapeutic option is not what I found so objectionable about the article. Rather, I was at a loss to understand why your reporter chose to profile someone so obviously in need of help to deal both emotionally and physically with her MS.

Donna McGhee, who would rather be thought a drunk, thief, or drug addict than admit she has MS and finds MS like "being in a dead place all the time," obviously does not deal well with the reality of her MS. There are thousands of people in Illinois who, while not thrilled to have MS, are living vitally and productively in spite of MS.

I would encourage Ms. McGhee to seek out the resources her neurologist may be able to recommend. I would also encourage her to use the excellent resources offered by the local chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Support groups, education, peer counseling, and the latest information on research and treatments are readily available through the society.

Articles like this one just serve to further depict those with MS as people unable to work, depressed, ashamed, and waiting with bated breath for the elusive "cure." While the article proves there are certainly people like this, I would challenge your reporter to write an article that could perhaps be titled "Surviving and Thriving in Spite of MS." I'm sure Joe Hartzler, prosecutor in the Oklahoma City bombing trial and a person with MS, would be one of the first to grant an interview.

Leigh Gilmore


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