Breeze-Courier | Taylorville, IL
weather sponsored by
Hickory Estates of Taylorville

Advanced Search
search sponsored by


home : columns : dear harriette May 25, 2016

2/10/2014 12:21:00 PM
Reader should talk to family about high blood pressure

DEAR HARRIETTE: I have not been feeling well recently, so I went to the doctor and learned that I have high blood pressure. I am so embarrassed. I feel like I have let my family down by falling into the family trap. Almost everyone on my father's side gets it by age 50. I swore to myself that it wouldn't happen to me. I'm afraid that diabetes is next -- most of my father's family has that, too. I already know that I should lose weight and exercise more and all that, but I find myself consumed by work or my kids, and I rarely get to it. I got a wakeup call the other day when a friend a couple years younger than me who appeared to be in really good health -- thin and trim -- died suddenly. We learned later he had high blood pressure and wasn't taking his meds. Now I'm scared. I am taking the medicine I was given, but I feel so isolated. I feel like if I tell my family, they are going to judge me. But I'm not being successful handling this alone. -- Sick and Scared, New Orleans

DEAR SICK AND SCARED: Did you know that one in three American adults suffers from high blood pressure? The numbers are staggering. I share them with you so that you can rest assured that you are not alone. Many people face this insidious disease at some point in their lives.  

According to research, there are plenty of things you can do, which you know already. But doing them a little bit at a time may help. Change your diet. Drink more water and less caffeine. Reduce your alcohol intake. Move your body.  

Those are the obvious suggestions. Trying to do it alone is not wise. The curious thing in your situation is that your family will likely be open to discussing this condition with you. They may even have pointers for you. You, ironically, are the one who has judged them, or at least your family history, by saying this would never happen to you. Heredity is a factor in illness sometimes. You may be predisposed to this condition. Stop judging yourself or your family and talk to them. Get professional counseling, too. For more information on hypertension, visit  

DEAR HARRIETTE: My uncle died, and I have been feeling very sad about it. When I told my boyfriend, he sort of shrugged it off. My uncle was nearly 90, and my boyfriend said, "Everybody has to die. We should be so lucky." Then he didn't want to talk about it anymore. That may be true, but it doesn't change the fact that I am sad. Now I am also mad at my boyfriend for being a jerk. I need a hug, not a scolding. -- Hug-Free, Salt Lake City

DEAR HUG-FREE: I hope you have other loved ones you can call at this time. Sure, you can tell your boyfriend that what you need most is comfort. But if he is unable to provide that, call your family or close friends who are available to listen and talk with you and participate in your grieving process. Later, you can talk to your boyfriend about being more sensitive to your needs.  

(Lifestylist and author Harriette Cole is president and creative director of Harriette Cole Media. You can send questions to or c/o Universal Uclick, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.)

Anderson Jewelers

Article Comment Submission Form
Please feel free to submit your comments.

If you are looking for the SPEAK OUT submission form, you can find it by clicking here: Speak Out Form

Article comments are not posted immediately to the Web site. Each submission must be approved by the Web site editor, who may edit content for appropriateness. There may be a delay of 24-48 hours for any submission while the web site editor reviews and approves it.

NOTE: All information on this form is required. Your telephone number and email address will not be displayed or shared.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Last Name:
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.

Trinity Dodge Fixed

NewsWebPagesOpinionPeopleObituariesAg & BusinessSportsContact Us
Subscriptions | Username & Password Reminder | Change Password | Life

Breeze-Courier & Printing | 212 S Main St. Taylorville, IL 62568 | (217) 824-2233 |

© Copyright 2014 Breeze-Courier & Printing. All Rights Reserved.
Original content may not be reprinted or distributed without the written permission of Breeze-Courier & Printing.

Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved