What is a Spoonie?

For those of you who are new to the chronic illness scene, or stumbled upon this site and are confused by my use of the term; a spoonie is someone who suffers from a chronic illness and relates to the spoon theory.  The spoon theory was created by a woman with Lupus, when she was trying to explain life with a chronic illness to a friend.  The gist of it is that once you become chronically ill, you no longer have boundless energy, or unlimited “spoons.”  Because you have a fixed number of spoons, you must be conscious of how you use them.  Different activities require different amounts, going to a doctor’s appointment would not take the same amount of spoons as brushing your hair or making your bed, but they all take up spoons.  

Once you are out of spoons, they’re gone; there is no getting them back.  Sometimes you can dip into the next day’s spoons, but of course, that effects what you will be able to do tomorrow.  Life becomes a game of trying to get the most out of each day without overextending yourself, and I think that the spoon theory does a brilliant job of simplifying life with chronic illness into terms that can be easily understood by spoonies and non spoonies alike.  If you want to read the spoon theory in the words of its creator, click here!

1 Comment


  1. I never fully understood the spoon theory, but this explained it very well! Great job (;

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