Chronic pain ‘hurts relationships too’

Chronic pain sufferers are getting a double whammy of distress from poor health and strained relationships, a counselling conference has heard this weekend.

Relationships researcher Rebecca Gray said that, “Without intervention, chronic pain conditions can also hurt the relationships of those who love pain sufferers.”

However Dr Gray, from Relationships Australia New South Wales, told the Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia conference in Melbourne on Sunday that a free on-line resource was already making a difference for pain sufferers and partners. Gray said Humankind used a mixture of videos, tip sheets and expert commentary that also helped health professionals and counsellors who worked with chronic pain sufferers.

The name Humankind comes from the notion that it is human to experience chronic illness and it is natural for humans to want to help each other when times are tough. The + sign is the connector between human and kind, a sign which denotes peace and is synonymous with first aid movements around the world. Being kind is the corner stone to healthy and long lasting relationships. The message from Humankind is to be kind to yourself and others.

Humankind was developed by Relationships Australia in partnership with Relationships Australia New South Wales, Relationships Australia South Australia, and Relationships Australia Victoria with assistance through a Health Access Grant from Medtronic, a global leader in medical technology.

Relationships Australia offices around the country provide counselling for anyone affected by chronic pain.  Visit or call 1300 364 277 for more information.

Details of the Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia conference can be found at

To visit the Humankind website, please click here.