Should I Date Someone with Sickle Cell?

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loving african husband and wife cooking dinner together couple

I’ve been getting alot of questions regarding this lately, I guess because it’s the season of love and new relationships. To respond to this question, you have to remember that people with sickle cell are people first. This means that just because we have a chronic medical condition doesn’t mean that we sprout wings and fly around the place. We are not abnormal creatures, we are people, just like you. We have emotions, feelings, dreams, hopes and desires. We want to be in a a good relationship with someone that loves us and treats us well. This applies to every human, and just because we have sickle cell does not exclude one from this paradigm.

I will acknowledge that dating and being in a relationship with someone that has a complex medical condition can be challenging, but it is DOABLE. Many people with sickle cell have the most loving and beautiful relationships that I have ever seen. The greatest advice that I can give you is to educate yourself on sickle cell as much as you can before you tie yourself to a sickle cell warrior. This way, you have a general idea of what you are stepping into before one gets too involved.

In addition, know your phenotype. You can get tested at your doctor’s office, and know what your phenotype is. If you are AA, then you have no chance of passing on the sickle cell disease if you do have a child with someone that has sickle cell disease. Your offspring will have the trait however, and must be properly educated on how to avoid passing the disease on to your grandchildren.

However, if you are AS, then more deliberation is needed. This means that you are a carrier of the trait of sickle cell, and that you have the potential to pass the full blown disease on to your children if you mate with a sickle cell warrior (SS). There is a 50% chance with EVERY pregnancy that you can pass the disease on. So you have to be more cautious, prayerful and knowledgeable about this condition if this is the case.

I know many people with sickle cell that have children that do not have sickle cell disease. And I know many people with sickle cell that have children with sickle cell disease. So the chances can be either way, and if you are serious about being in a relationship with this person, then you have to be aware of the chances.

Another issue is that due to the chronicity of the condition, people with sickle cell do have emotional upheavals. I recently was hospitalized for 9 days, and when I got discharged, I was an emotional wreck, and nothing like myself. It took about 2 weeks to feel emotionally ‘normal’ again, and this has the potential to happen often. There is also an element of depression that might exist, and unexplained anger. It can be an emotional rollercoaster, and not everyone is up to the challenge.

You might have to take on the responsibilities of the household when the sickle cell warrior is ill, and may have to shoulder majority of the burdens at times. You might have to assume the caregiver role, as well as being a bulwark of support and patient advocate. You might have to be the trailblazer searching for new treatment methods, or nagging your loved one to take their meds. You might have to pack an extra sweater just in case, or suffer through heat because your loved one is cold.

I will always maintain that it takes a very special person to be able to love and adore a sickle cell warrior irrespective of that condition. To me, it just means that when you find the right person, nothing can shake that love. And that is really what everyone is searching for.

42 COMMENTS

  1. Having sickle cell and dating is not easy, once I was on a first date at a restaurant when the crisis started. She was late to turn up and got there just as I was being taken into a waiting ambulance. She came with me and stayed with me. She visited each day and I fell in love with her in my hospital bed. Sad to say there was not happy ending as sickle cell i think got in the way with her parents. I was ready to marry but, she moved on. Many times I have found myself in pain after sex and a few times they will call an ambulance and run, never to be seen again. But its all good life goes on for a warrior.

  2. I have sickle cell anemia and have been happily married for 10 years. If you have sickle cell then you can get married if the person you are dating loves God first and in turn will reflect God’s love toward you. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

  3. Well, it has not been easy dating as a sickle cell warrior especially when the person you love does not know anything about it. The attempt to explain the situation even frustrates you because you end up feeling inferior.I remember a couple of my dates told me in the face that am weak and i cannot do this and that which makes me feel less compared to them.One thing i have noticed however is that we tend to be like by most people so i told myself not date anymore but wait for that special person.I have ideas of dating a fellow sickle cell warrior since she will understand me compared to others.

  4. @Solomon..
    Am so sorry about your family lack of support and kind of stigma to your AS girlfriend needless to say i can’t imagine if she was SS!!!!
    The chances of AS and AS getting SS child is 25%,that is with each pregnancy ;50% AS,25% AA and 25% SS making the total of 100%.
    All i can say is follow your heart and marry the girl of your dreams,get well informed and educated on Sickle Cell Disease and the rest leave it to God. I am SS and can’t thank God enough for blessing me with the most amazing parents whose tireless love,care and support makes me stronger to face anything in life.
    Stay blessed..Cheers!

  5. My fiance is SS. We struggle a lot though his spells; especially when it is time for him to go to the hospital. He always says, “I don’t want to leave you alone.” I respond by telling him that I wouldn’t be alone because I would be with him every night until it was time for him to come home. I love him dearly. We plan to marry in May of 2013. He wants about 3 children, I want 2, lol. Anyway… This love is a battle, but I have always beeen victorious. I am his shoulder; even when he feels as though men aren’t supposed to cry. I am his heart; there with him and for every beat. Sickle cell or no sickle cell, he is my everything. He is my warrior, and I am his.

  6. Khodi, u almost made mee cry. God bless U and ur husbnd to bee. God wil gv u d strenght to carry on even in the toughest of times. Love is key .

  7. I have Sickle Cell Anemia, but my case seems to be different from others, while I don’t have crises has frequently has others, my Eye’s are extremely jaundice all the time. so much so that people always stop and stare at me. I feel like a freak and that no one will ever be able to love me. am 21 years old now and I’ve never had a girlfriend. I feel such a tremendous inferiority complex. and I worry I may die alone.

  8. I have been dating someone with sickle cell for awhile now. Sometimes it seems like it is impossible because I love him so much and having to just sit there and watch him suffer and not being able to do anything makes me feel helpless. Its the little things – like not leaving him when hes in pain at the er, or bringing him something to eat when he can’t stand the hospital food anymore. I love him with all my heart and nothing can stand in the way of that even on our worst days. He hates leaving me when he has to go stay in the hospital but I stay by his side every chance I get.

  9. My boyfriend and I both have sickle cell, it’s difficult but we make it work. when you love someone it doesn’t matter what they have, you stick by them and help them as best you can and stand by them when you can’t help. it won’t always be easy, but it will always be worth it. I know that for a fact, and I’m only 17. and we have been together over a year.

  10. I’m Seriously in LOVE with ss Patient, I found out from a Doctor she normal buy Drugs and she never wanna tell me about it, she’s afraid maybe I’m gonna leave her but in deep down my heart, I love her, what can I do? do I intend to ask her by I don’t wanna see her crying because I know about her health condition but this worried my mind so much that I think of every minute, can I ask her? I’m also afraid of loosing her

  11. Hi everyone. This is for all the warriors looking for hopeful and happy endings. So I dont have sickle cell disease but today I met a beautiful Sickle Cell warrior in the hospital. It just so happens we both have to go to the same coumadin clinic regularly for testing. Myself, I go because I have had 2 heart surgeries and have lived a life of chronic illness, short life expectancy, and severe bouts of depression. (Sound familiar?)

    In any case, this beautiful girl and I happened to be waiting to schedule our next appointments when she said a friendly hello to me! We exchanged a bit of conversation before she scheduled her appointment and left. I caught up with her in the lobby and got her number. Life is too short so I called her back this same night. After great hour-long conversation we’re all set to go out for ice cream this Friday.

    I am convinced that I am attracted most to her beautiful soul and gentle spirit from having to deal with her life long conditions. And I completely empathize. It is 3AM and I have stayed up reading as much about Sickle Cell as possible. This website was the most helpful in giving me perspective on the challenges of dating and loving a sickle cell warrior.

    We haven’t had our first date yet but I feel confident that our similar struggles will pull us closer together rather than keep us apart.

    I’m sorry my post is so long. But if I could share a romantic thought…
    She was born with sickle cell and I with a broken heart. That is what brought us together. Perhaps she can mend my broken heart and I’ll be her cure 🙂

  12. Hi, I am currently dating someone with sickle cell. I’m 17 and he is 18. We have been dating for a little over a year and I can honestly say that he is the person I would love to spend the rest of my life with. Yes I know I’m young but love is love right? Well, my family is outwardly opposed to me being with him because they think that I can “do better”. They don’t want me to have to give up having children in the future, have to deal with the possibility of losing my husband early, and they don’t want me to be with a partner that I will have to take care of. It’s really hard, and I have zero support with my decision to be with him.

  13. Hey , I’ve read you all’s stories and I gotta say you all are very strong. Sometimes with me its hard to cope with the fact that my girlfriend has sickle cell. I honestly never thought about doing my research on the topic till now .. only because currently she has mono and recently had tonsillitis because of it. I love her dearly, and now that I realize the responsibilities I may have down the road ima ensure not to let that fact change due to it. The person who wrote this is totally right, you all “..are not abnormal creatures”. I love her as a person and that’s all that counts. it hurts what I’ve learned with the 50% chance it may pass on to the children… but im sure we’ll get through this.

  14. I love this post. Ive been with my boyfriend(also ss) for right at 2 years now. It is definately a struggle sometimes but we have the strongest connection with each other. Its hard for someone who doesnt know the pain of sickle cell to understand the emotions they come with. The anger and depression can take a toll on someone who doesnt get it. Im a caregiver at heart. I love helping others so every hospital stay, im there. Every surgery, im there. At home recovery, im there. Every step of the way i hold his hand and kiss him every chance i get. Hes my everything and i would do anything for him. Love is possible if you have the ability to love someone completely for who they are and not what their faults are!! ♥

  15. I have been dating my man for almost 3yrs now and from day 1 I think him having sickle cell attracted me too him more.although I have researched sickle cell over and over and still feel helpless when he has his crisis…which by the way is frequent especially during the summer… I love him to death and don’t treat him any differently than somebody who doesn’t have sickle cell. We are now 6 weeks away from or first child which by the way will not have the disease. My only fear is that he gwts crisi so much that he will get too sick and die before he can get to enjoy his only child…anybody have anything encouraging to say or advice to give me…

  16. Hey read all of these and I’m so inspired….I’m a medical student and know much about this. Strange enough the girl i fell in love with just a week ago is ss and i don’t want to let her go. So was looking for sites on how to take good care of a relationship with a warrior, and fell on dis site. Inspiring and after reading all these comments I’m more determined. Thanks guys

  17. I wish I could find someone who will love me for who I am. Hmmmmmmmmmm sickle cells people eyes dey see oooo.am 31 years and I have seen.may God answer my prayers.

  18. I have been married to my wonderful wife for almost a year now and she has been there for me all the step of the way. Since I have been with her I had two crisis and she has been their at the hospital with me every day and night. With her I do not feel lonely in life. I love you Anna

  19. My girlfriend that i love so much as SS but am O positive and i really want to be her what blood are we going to give birth to….

  20. My boyfriend has Sickle Cell, and I don’t, nor do I have the trait. He is the most amazing man I have ever met. Going through a crisis with his was one of the scariest experiences I have ever been through, I felt completely helpless, but I know that what he was feeling was completely worse. To be 100% honest I was extremely nervous about being with him mostly because I knew what sickle cell was, but didn’t know what it really meant. Mostly for selfish reasons I thought about breaking up with him when I found out. But staying with him was the best decision I’ve ever made. I wouldn’t want to be with any one else and we fight his disease together. We’re a team and he is such a fighter. I feel proud to be with him every day

  21. Is there a sickle cell dating site. I have been married and dated after divorce; however, somehow I think that this is the reason behind my breakups. The gentlemen know about my disease, but either do not want to marry me because of this or purposely try to break up the relationship because they witness my sickness. I feel it is a shame people with the disease have to be rejected as if they have something that can be contacted by others and this is not the case.

  22. Time and again this question of my girl friend who is ss comes in my mind. Should i continue dating her or to stop. I have no answer on my own but God will show me the way. I love her and she loves me too. This page has made me aquire more confidence to love her.

  23. I am a 33 yrs old “AA”man and I am about to get married to my 27yrs old SS girlfriend…we were friends for 6yrs before we bacame lovers…I do not intend telling any of my family members about her condition as this might promt them to stigmatize us…I really don’t care if they find out after the wedding…we all have secrets….I love this girl beyond explanation…I will marry her in the next life even if she has hiv,ebola and the zika virus and ss inclusive….there is just nothing that can stop me….I have grown beyond just having pitty on her…I am sure some family members of mine will not be cool with my intention to marry her but they can’t stop me as I am suffering from a bigger incurable disease and its called love…this life is so short and I want to spend it together with her….I have dumped a handfull of the so called normall genotype women for her sake…I love her first for been a woman and secondly coz she is just the one for me….let he who is not ss live forever or not fall sick…..we all fall sick and die some day….I am clearly aware of the risk and situation am getting into but hey…GOD is my strenght.

  24. I have been with my girlfriend for over a year now. I love her with all my hart. I want to marry her. She just had a hip operation in February and just coming home (March). Sent she has been home all she do is fine any and everything to argue about.It is to the point that I am every unhappy. I have tried to talk to her her but it is still going on. Can some one tell me how to dale with this.

  25. Hi I’m alesia I’ve been dating my boyfriend for 6 months now I’m so in love with him we talk about getting married and having children all the time. He has sickle cell anemia ss, he is the sweetest person I’ve ever been with but honestly its starting to get hard we’ve been arguing a lot lately and he’s been really depressed I’ve done nothing but try to be strong and help him but its been so hard 🙁 I’m trying to stay happy keep praying and not lose faith but it seems like noting is changing for the better 🙁

  26. Your comment..Just find out my fiancee is ss whiles am also As..and we are suppose to marry next three months…I really love him..can we have children without dey not getting?

  27. Hi. I lost my sister to the condition threes years ago… Recently, I was in the up country and learnt that other cousin, a sickle cell warrior’s condition was worsening. Both her parents are illiterates thus they can not sufficiently deal with the condition. She’s is only rushed to a nearby healthcare facility when she has been pinned down. Beside, she walks to school over 15Km everyday. No proper meals nor medication… She’s received blood not less than thrice since 2014 and her mom says the doc at the center told her that the patients had lost a kidney. She doesn’t understand. I felt the urge to help but can’t due to financial constraints. At least I can manage her upkeep and school fee but not medical bills. Kindly help get someone to pay her bills so that I bring to the Nairobi. Be blessed

  28. I am a sickle cell patient and I met a close to a month now and we love each other and he didn’t no am sickle cell patient my question is that wen exactly should I tell him about my health, should I wait for some months or I should tell him now

  29. Reading all your posts is like finding my self. its like a dream to me to hear all this, Oh Am Joseph 24years and am a warrior, i thought that only my mother,brother and sister are the only people in the world who will ever love me for who I am but your posts have given me hope, and happiness to think that one day I will also get someone who will understand me as I am. I just thought that that’s the way God wants me to be, just me alone and my family with no one to love, I have been me and my family all the time but right now I think God has an extra plan for me, let me just wait for that right person who will understand,☺ ❤❤❤ lol

  30. i am here to share my testimony on how i conceived my baby. i have been married to my husband for 11 years without no issue.i had problems with my in-laws even my husband started to have new affairs aside our marriage. it was a very terrible thing to bear. i became a laughing stock among my pear, i prayed and fasted and nothing happened. i was now seen as always unhappy.i was even ready to pack out of my marital home and stay on my own because my husband was not given me any attention that i needed from him. i decided to focus on my job and try to live happy on my own. on this faithful day, i decided to check the net for updates on healthy living and i came across a story of a man who Dr NOSA helped his wife to conceive a baby. i decided to put a try because this has been my greatest problem in life. today i am a proud mom with two son. words will not be enough to explained what this man did for me.i am a happy mother,i know there is someone in same condition and you feel there is no way. i urge you to contact him. This is the solution to every single mother around the globe. distance is not a barrier, he will surely make your dreams come trough. contact him today via email: drmosaspellcaster@gmail .com

  31. I think as a SS individual you don’t want to replicate yourself wisdom is profitable in all things.the kind of pain you undergo should not make you wish it for your enemy left aside a child,we are more knowledgeable now.this is where bornagain christians have advantage.I couldn’t imagine myself dating a SS patient with the level of my exposure coupled with having worked in a pharmacy where I have met some just to put it like that. Well,my fiancee after praying is SS which is a worry for me but what I know is this,it is well. I didn’t choose by sight and God is not evil that he will give is child something bad because he said in his word that he who finds a wife has found a good thing,mark that word good. God bless you all

  32. I am or will I say I was married to a sickle cell warrior. I entered the marriage without having so much idea of illness. My spouse never explained anything to me. I had little idea about it. sex was not frequent as I was used to. I got apprehensive, but instead of my hubby to explain to me, he got mad that I was complaining. We fought, quarrelled and finally he walked away. I love my hubby despite the shortcoming of his illness, he doesn’t say anything to me about what goes wrong with him. I seriously want to get it right this time. I want my hubby back. thanks this site he has being helpful on why he easily gets angered.

  33. I’m 28 and my boyfriend is 31. Ww have been dating for 6years now. He is as and I’m AA we want to get married but my family is against it. I love him so much. I’m lost don’t know what to do.

  34. I am in love with a 23 year old SS Warrior, though I am 33 and AA. I intend to marry her. My mum has been asking her genotype, but we’ve been reluctant to tell her so as not to be a barrier in our plans to get married. My question is – are there proven cases of difficulty in concieveing or during child birth for an SS Warrior ?

    • No, we don’t always go to the hospital when in crisis, and surgery is only dependent on the level of deterioration of tissues due to repeated sickling of cells. Hope that helps!

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