Hi. I am new here and would like some advice. I am 49 and have been in a relationship with a lady of 41 for 2 months. She has been diagnosed with MS for 3 years. I’m feeling very positive about our future and would like some guidance on how it progresses. I want her to feel confident that I have the mindset and tools to be prepared for eventualities that may occur. She is a very strong and beautiful woman in body and mind. I just want to find a way of reassuring her without sounding patronising.

hi baxy

let her take the lead when it comes to talking about ms.

i’m sure you won’t sound patronising but it’s great that you are aware.

we all experience this same disease differently so it’s nigh on impossible to say how your friend will progress.

having good times is vital.

mostly my diary is all medical appointments but i have the odd mad week of socialising (followed by the inevitable 2 weeks of exhaustion).

the odd weekend away works wonders too.

casually mention the possibility of a weekend away and take it from there.

wishing you both the best of everything.

Relationship help is advice given to those in a relationship in need of emotional or mental support. You may be asking yourself, "how can I get relationship help?" The answer is relationships are complex. It will take time and emotional effort on your part to mend broken links and mend fences that have been torn asunder over previous years. Asking for relationship counseling won't be viewed as an admission of weakness but will be seen as an effort to strengthen bonds of love and commitment between you and your partner.

I am the kind of person that gives people affectionate, or nicknames to whom I care for. It isn’t condescending, it is a form of showing love. Anyone, especially someone with a debilitating illness, next reassurance and to hear that you love them, are very important. My wife’s father called my wife Dolly because as a child she was a chatterbox. I ended up calling my wife"Doll", because she was so attractive, and she loved being touched gently, rubbing her sore shoulders, and “Good morning Doll”, where a few examples. You can find your own. Do not criticize if you can prevent it, but don’t stand by and let your partner get hurt because you are angry. As men get more disabled, they may find this gentle language more comforting.