MS Personality

Hello Everyone,

                          Just lately, I have tried to do more investigating re: "The MS Personality". My main interest is really to find out what I see as the types of people that develop MS. I was sure that I had read about this somewhere/sometime/somehow, but when I looked in books I drew a blank. But today I Googled 'The MS Personality', and was showered (through the ether) by references. 'Great' I though, but after a glimpse I kept reading that this was referring more to the personality that we are left with once MS has descended. I am pretty sure (memory allowing) that the writer described those people with a propensity to develop MS as being both sensitive and intelligent (or maybe that's just wishful thinking on my part).

Has anyone else out there got and ideas? Thank you for all who answer this posting.

                                      Best Wishes,


No, it’s true, but they can be found in all walks of life. My dad was a miserable, stingy old goat - and he expected people to feel sorry for him as he wrung his hands saying “why me? why me?”

Hi Moira,

Based on the people with MS that I have met over the years I would say that personality varies as much as symptoms.

There is a cluster of MSers in the small town where I live and we get together now and again. I can honestly say that the vaiety of personality types in this group are much like any other group of people pulled together by one linking feature.

Having said all that I’ll grab the sensitive and intelligent tag for myself LOL



Senstive and intelligent? - more like 'grumpy and forget-full' Although I have been to university and have 10 highers - I can forget absolutely anything?

what a waste of (f***ing) time!

signed pis*ed off!

My initials are MS as well!

Highers…Scottish…Sassenachs have A levels.


Begs Independance, then?

-Of course we are sensitive and intelligent, but sensitive to what and whom, with intelligence based upon IQ?


We are generally lovely people who find ourselves the oracle of this nasty disease.  Perhaps we trod in the wrong puddle when young?




Hi, funny you should describe MSers as intellingent............because my dentist was saying he has a few MSers on his books and they are all intelligent people!

He could be just being kind, but maybe he has something there, eh?

Some of the people I have met through my MS/? have/had good jobs eg

me...........I ran 2 Tourist Information Centres

Mary.........uni lecturer

Karen...........scientist`s nurse

 Louise......ward clerk

jean and nurses

Pip.........runs a home for special needs

That is just a small group of people.

With all those brain cells, we really ought to be able to make at least 1 fantastic brain, eh? LOL.

luv Pollxx

The technical term for the type of person who develops MS is the 'Unlucky Sod.'

I do not think that the mindless disease process is affected in the slightest degree by whether its host is a Victor Meldrew or a Pollyanna, or anything in between.  

I certainly agree that having MS can affect how we feel/behave, just as we are shaped by any and all of our life experiences (although I doubt whether it changes in any fundamental way the broad personality traits we started out with), and also (potentially) through the disease's direct action on the brain.

But I would take a very narrow-eyed look at any claims that it is a particular personality type that gets MS - and suspect that any such suggestion would be one of those voodoo correlations that have no real substance.



Hi Al, the way you put your reply together, plus the long words you used, suggest to me that you do have quite a high intellect…if you don`t mind me complementing you!

luv Pollx

we're all lovely! xxx

Hmmmm, lots and lots of factors - the group of people that you have asked the question of are all using the internet and this website for whatever reason (company; information; reassurance; etc) so that would give you probably an "at least" IQ to start with.  I think I'm fairly average, verging on high with the intelligence (not terribly good at passing exams, but fairly bright in other ways), and I'm more sympathetic than sensitive.  Having said that, the people with MS that I meet at the MS Therapy Centre would, i think, mostly all be on similar levels to me.  I don't think that I've met somebody with MS who I thought was particularly dim - having said that, I tend to give people who come across as having low levels of intelligence the benefit of the doubt, usually until they do something so completely stupid that they annoy me and then I avoid them.  Life's too short to suffer fools - MS or not.

I'm not sure if there is a "personality type".  We all have things in common, but we also all have differences.

Luisa x


Hello Jane, Marcus, Liz, Brenda, Poll, Alison, Carole and Luisa,

                 I am sure that there is something in this intelligence theory. Admitedly, I have known at least two people for which this might not apply (both mouth breathers), but the vast majority seem to be above average in intelligence; but when it comes to sensitivity, I am far less sure. I had an inkling that this theory was in the 'Multiple Sclerosis: A Personal Exploration' book by Dr. Alexander Burnfield, but so far I can't find it. Thank you all for adding to this thread.

                       Best Wishes,


Oh, oh, ohhh, I know the piece you mean! It's all rather complimentary about the MS character, saying that it affects people of above average intelligence, etc., etc. happy2


I can't help thinking it was that journalist, whatsername (Virginia somebody), who wrote it.  Will have a think.


Lolli xx

Hello Lolli,

                   I am glad that someone else might have read this line. I am just annoyed with myself for not remembering WHERE!

                                Best Wishes,


Virginia Phillips. Actually, I'm not sure she was a journalist, but I do think it was her who wrote the piece I'm thinking of, which may or may not be the piece you're thinking of!


Lolli xx

Haha, “mouth breathers” I like that! - had another thought (two in one day, how exciting!!). My brother and I are fairly similar in intelligence and personality (and looks as I found out after I shaved my head for charity). I am 2 years older than him, our birthdays are a month apart (I’m beginning Feb, he’s beginning Mar), so we have both experienced more or less the same environmental factors when growing up, our mum was pregnant both times at more or less the same time of year. I have MS, our mum had MS - he doesn’t. Having said that, out of the two of us, I was always going to be more likely to develop it because I’m female. I don’t think that any one thing is to blame, I think it’s probably a combination of lots of things - I also see the sense in the theory that MS is a collection of lots of different (but similar) diseases that come under the same blanket heading, this would go some way to explaining why everybody has such different (but similar) experiences.

Luisa x

I think we are all highly intelligent, sensitive yet strong, amazing people…although I may be slightly biased!!

Although seriously I suspect this theory links in with the vitamin D/sun exposure theories. People who have below average intelligence being more likely to work in manual outdoors type jobs?

Or maybe it’s to make us feel better about ourselves after all it’s a fairly useless observation…you can’t change intelligence!

Sensitive and intelligent,ain't going to be seen in my obituary.Arsey middle aged teenager perhaps.


MS appears to be a really PC condition as the sufferers are like Liquorice Allsorts...........................All shapes, colours and sizes , and they are all allowed to develop their very own version.



Shh - the English haven’t twigged that we rule anyway…just keeping them confused.