Faking MS for profit- A touchy subject
When people with MS participate in athletic events, either for their own interest or associated with fundraising for MS, it is truly inspirational and rightly so.
In the course of doing research for an article about “faux” explorers I have learned that one of my subjects claims to have MS. While it may be true, the rest of this person’s history indicates a willingness to fabricate and lie about his past experiences and qualifications.
Because MS has such idiosyncratic symptoms and because the appearance of symptoms is often unpredictable, MS is an ideal disease for someone who, perversely, pretends to have the disease. In the case of someone who identifies as an athlete or explorer, an MS declaration can evoke sympathy and admiration. The person in question in this particular case is raising money for MS with his athletic events and also attracting financial support, patronage, free equipment, etc. He also refuses to provide any substantiation of his diagnosis, even to an acceptable third party.
I’m posting at this forum because I’d like to hear (anonymously or not) from any genuine MS sufferers the answer to this question.
- If your MS was central to your participation in athletic fundraising events, how would you react if someone challenged you to prove your diagnosis?
I am not suggesting that everyone with MS needs to make their medical records public. But it seems to me that a simple letter from one’s physician, confirming the diagnosis, would serve the purpose of clearing the air, particularly if the person in question is being put forward as a representative of an MS organization.
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