This is always a hard one.
Personally I try to tell the person as soon as I can, I can therefore mitigate against the risk of a broken heart. If you leave it until you know each other better, you have the chance of a partner breaking up with you, using the excuse ‘You Lied to Me’. I don’t want someone to be able to use this excuse on me. The reason given for the breakup may not be as stated but the fear of the unknown, fear of MS. On the other hand, I have met a lot of guys who don’t know what it means. Sure I didn’t know what it was, until after I got diagnosed.
My other consideration is being labelled, I believe that if you tell someone before you meet them, then there is a possibility of them labelling you as MS and them being unable to see the real person. MS is a part of me, but not that significant a part, there is a lot more to me.
I recently had a guy in contact from POF, we were emailing and texting every day, I really liked him because he seemed normal, kind, intelligent and attractive. We just hit it off, alot of the same interests. We arranged a date for the following Sat night. On the Tues, we decided to talk, to I suppose, get a better feel for each other, I ended up telling him I had MS (sometimes I cant keep my mouth shut, even though I know better) and then it all changed. He couldn’t get off the phone quick enough. The following day I texted to see how he was and he texted back saying that we had no connection and that he didn’t want to meet me, it really hurt because I knew that he wasnt being honest, it was the MS.
So I suppose what I am trying to say is be cautious, go with your gut. If you don’t have any obvious symptoms then you could wait a while but it is up to you.
What I have decided to do, is tell the person on the first or second date. It can be the first as I start to drag my foot when it is tired and it is hard to miss the limp. I tell him because at least he gets to see and talk to Nicola and not just the MS, in my experience a lot of people will see the real you and want to see you again provided that the connection/chemistry is there.
I hope this post hasn’t put anyone off on-line dating. Most of the guys I have dated have said
‘You manage your MS really well’
That is probably their way of saying you have a pretty normal life 🙂