Your Illness is Not Your Fault

In my recent post (“Reluctantly Going to the Doctor“) I wrote about getting a minor surgery to address an “issue” and I had a couple more things I wanted to say about it.

When my issue was getting addressed, I asked the doctor if there was anything I could do to avoid having the same issue in the future. He said that it’s just one of those things that happens, and that there’s nothing that anyone can do to avoid it. It wasn’t because of anything I ate, or did, or didn’t do – it was just one of those things that happens. Hopefully it won’t happen again, but if it does, I know who to visit to get it take care of.

Hearing “it’s just one of those things that happens” was actually really nice and refreshing. Even though he didn’t explicitly say it, I heard, “it’s not your fault,” and that future issues wouldn’t be my fault either. It just happens. Sometimes parts of the body malfunction.

For those of us with fluoroquinolone toxicity, we know what caused our issues. They didn’t “just happen.” We were poisoned. And the answer to the question of what can be done to avoid fluoroquinolone toxicity is simple – don’t take fluoroquinolones.

With any sort of difficult-to-treat illness, there are always guesses regarding what to do, how to treat the illness, and how to prevent symptoms in the future. This site is filled with advice around all those questions. Every person who has written about their experience and shared their input regarding dealing with fluoroquinolone toxicity has meant well and has wanted to help, and the stories of hope and healing on this site have helped thousands of people through fluoroquinolone toxicity. But I worry about that line between suggesting things that are healing and blaming people who don’t do the things that are supposed to be healing. Not healing from fluoroquinolone toxicity doesn’t mean that you haven’t eaten the right things, or that you haven’t gotten the right treatments, or that you haven’t spent enough money. Fluoroquinolone toxicity happens first and foremost because people are exposed to fluoroquinolones, but symptoms persist because of all sorts of reasons, most of which are mysterious. Healing happens too, and we can point to reasons and ways that we think our body has healed, but the truth is that healing is mysterious too. Healing happens. The body has amazing healing capacity. But sometimes it doesn’t.

Neither are your fault. No matter what you ate, or what you drank, or what pre-existing health issues you had when you got floxed, or how your infection happened, or any other life factor, your illness is not your fault.

Of course I hope that you find healing. I hope that you find some tools that help you to heal too, and I hope that this site helps you to identify those tools. But if you don’t find the things that help, or if your body just doesn’t heal, it’s not your fault.

I think that letting go of anger and self-blame is healing, and I hope that this post helps some people to stop blaming themselves for their illness. I know that I dealt with a lot of guilt and self-blame in my journey through fluoroquinolone toxicity, and I hope that hearing, IT’S NOT YOUR FAULT, helps someone through their journey.


I wrote the above paragraphs in early November 2019 and a few things have happened to me health-wise since. The issue that I had a minor surgery for didn’t heal properly, and now I have to have a more major surgery. The next surgery will involve general anesthesia, and a few weeks of recovery time. I’ve never been a fan of general anesthesia, and have always considered it to be a bit scary. Fluoroquinolone toxicity adds to my fear of it. If any of you have advice for going through surgery post-flox, or anesthesia, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Thank you!


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11 thoughts on “Your Illness is Not Your Fault

  1. Dan Jervis December 3, 2019 at 9:29 am Reply

    Dear Lisa, I’m saddened to learn that you must endure another challenge for which you have no control. It makes all of us reflect on a memory of surrender, I just learned from my Functional Medicine Practitioner that Valley View Hospital has chosen Avelox as their antibiotic of choice. Avelox is another Quinalone. My solution has been to inform the doctors that I have an allergy to the dreaded list of Quinalones, Cipro, Levaquin, etc.

    When I meet the anesthesiologist, I have asked what sedative he will use and it’s usually Fentanyl. My family doctor recommended Ketamine the last time I had surgery to release my right biceps tendon. The anesthesiologist said that he uses it a lot so I wasn’t worried. Upon regaining consciousness, I experienced an hour of the most horrifying ordeal of my life. I was sure I was going to die. An hour later, the two recovery room nurses told me that they had never witnessed anyone go through the terror I had displayed after having been given Ketamine.

    Sadly, two years ago my Functional Medicine Practitioner had an emergency appendectomy.
    Her recovery was complicated, and she was unable to walk. Upon her first recovery visit with her surgeon she asked which antibiotic she was given through her IV. The surgeon said “Cipro”. She was stunned that she had not been diligent enough to prevent this from happening to her. She has told me that at least half of her patients have been floxed and now she too was a victim. Now, nearly two years later she admits that she thinks she is 75%

    Lisa, you have been an inspiration, savior and angel to hundreds even thousands of people including myself. We all owe you gratitude and appreciation for ALL you have done for us.

    With sincere admiration, Dan Jervis

  2. illnessislife December 3, 2019 at 10:10 am Reply

    I wasn’t floxed, but have similar health issues (dysautonomia, hypermobility, etc). I have so much regret over things I should/shouldn’t have done. I feel like I have to be in control of everything, since I can’t rely on doctors, which makes me feel responsible for everything. If I did all the “right things” (eg exercise, careful about what I eat, etc) I just got worse because of the extreme state my body was in. Then I started blaming myself for that, beating myself up for the damage I did to me body by pushing it further and not listening to it. I know I did wrong. I had someone say to me that everything that happened to me is my fault then block me out of their life. And, I accept that it is. I don’t know why that’s a good reason to treat someone like they’re nothing to you. I just look at people like that and think they’re lucky. I pushed myself over the brink and people like that relax and enjoy their lives and nothing bad happens to them.

    We live in a culture of blame. People look at fat people and assume they’re lazy, blaming them for being fat. They look at people with diabetes, cancer, etc and blame them for it. People look at me and think all sorts of horrible things about me. I’ve been told I’m immature, deserve everything I’ve got, etc. Yay America. I want to move somewhere where people have some sense to them .

    • Honestly December 4, 2019 at 1:35 pm Reply

      You are a tremendous person because you are speaking here! Enough bad days, weeks, months, years, mistreatment – eventually can distract – so forgive yourself if it makes you feel better. You must be an excellent friend, full of compassion after such rejection and now you know who your friends are.

    • Lukasz December 5, 2019 at 8:36 pm Reply


      Don’t let these kind of people get to you. These types of people clearly have some issues of their own. People who blame others for having a chronic illness really need to be on the lookout for karma because one day they may very well find themselves in the same situation you’re in. No one is to blame for their unfortunate fate. Bad luck can find anybody and everybody. A person who seemingly has everything, can lose it all in a split second. We live in a very toxic world. Our bodies aren’t suppose to handle this type of toxic load. The breaking point has been reached for many people, and that’s why we have so many people entering chronic states of illness. Changing the lifestyle to a healthier model helps, but nothing’s guaranteed. Our environment needs to change and the toxic burden reduced for our bodies to regenerate. Making the necessary changes though, is the hardest part. It requires a dramatic overhaul and being the creatures of habit that we are, that’s easier said than done for many of us. Don’t blame yourself though. Do whatever it takes to improve yourself and your overall health. That’s in your control. Everything else is out of your hands.

      • illnessislife December 6, 2019 at 6:01 pm Reply

        “No one is to blame for their unfortunate fate.” That’s how I think, too. We all do the best we can or at least what we think is best given what we know. But others don’t think that way, and I do have a lot of self-doubt. I have to remind myself of how hard I’ve tried and how much was fated to happen, no matter what I did. It seems like things didn’t have to get as ugly as they did, but maybe they did. I don’t want these people to get to me, but it’s not just about my own self-doubt/regret. People affect me a lot. I can’t believe how many people have abandoned me, become my enemy, etc. I feel like I have to be good enough to get others’ support. It seems like people love to kick a person who’s down. It’s all the hate from these people and I’m dying for their support even if they aren’t the best people. I’m dying living this life on my own and knowing the whole world is just going to judge me.

        • TruthBknown December 7, 2019 at 10:35 am

          They are mistreating you on purpose because you are the scapegoat/target in the scenario and they are afraid to be mistreated also. Be careful because there are men who will prey on you and claim to be your savior in this abused state that you are in but they lie and use people too. These men rape, hypnotize, mind control and use psychological tools and then throw you away. Trust me – This site may be of help –

      • Honestly June 22, 2020 at 4:51 am Reply

        Lukasz, lifestyle change is more challenging due to sleep deprivation even without other symptoms. Add to that the confusion of not having the facts of fluoroquinolones clearly stated so you can follow a healing road with minimal harm. Instead there’s guesswork and blaming yourself for what you don’t know and the feeling of “Crying a River” –

  3. Bj December 3, 2019 at 12:46 pm Reply

    You need verbal and written directive not to have fluoroquinolones. Someone needs to be with you who will also state this pre-surgery and make sure they don’t send an rx home with you for a FQ. You might also want to ask about the class of anesthesia drugs used. You got this; you’re a brave woman! Prayers for a successful surgery and speedy recovery!

  4. Lukasz December 4, 2019 at 12:08 pm Reply

    “We were poisoned. And the answer to the question of what can be done to avoid fluoroquinolone toxicity is simple – don’t take fluoroquinolones.”

    Truer words have never been spoken. Best of luck on your upcoming surgery, Lisa.

  5. BJ December 4, 2019 at 5:13 pm Reply

    Lukasz, where did you get that t-shirt?!

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