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Boyfriend's Chronic Conditions Prompt Partner to Weigh Options

DEAR ABBY: I have been in a relationship for four years. My partner has fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis. When we met, he had just found out. He was still active, working, and we had sex regularly. Fast forward: He is now on disability, not working at all, we rarely sleep together and he never leaves the house. I love him still, but I didn't realize how hard this would be. I know he has a lot to cope with, but it's hard on me as well. I have to work, do most of the chores and beg him to go out. We are only in our mid-20s, and I'm afraid for our future. I feel like I'm already 80 years old. I don't want to leave him, but I also don't want to live this way. Any advice would be helpful. -- BAD DEAL IN THE MIDWEST

DEAR BAD DEAL: What a sad letter. You are both young, with many years ahead of you. You have a difficult decision to make. Because you feel you are not up to the challenge of taking care of a chronically ill individual, it may be time to end the relationship. If you are staying out of obligation or pity, it isn't fair to either of you.

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