Friendship and support for the newly diagnosed

27th March 2023

Jess Worsley remembers exactly how she felt when she received her MS diagnosis four years ago.

She had just welcomed her daughter in the world, and rather than living blissfully in the newborn bubble, she was navigating a world of living with MS.

“I felt as if I was drowning, and every time I managed to come up for air, I was dragged back down again by another reminder of what MS might take from me,” she says.

“Honestly, I felt like someone close to me had died, and that someone was me.

“I was in shock, and scared about how I would be the active and present mama I dreamed of being, I could not think or see beyond that dark moment.”
It's inspiring to learn how Jess turned this experience into something positive.

Jess works as a Client Engagement Coordinator, with lived experience, at the MS Society SA & NT. She’s recently established peer dinners for clients who have been newly diagnosed.
There are no expectations placed on clients at the dinners held throughout the year. It’s a safe and welcoming space to talk with like-minded people going through a similar experience, gathering information, and enjoying a meal together.
“Connection and understanding are so powerful,” Jess says.
“When clients attend the event, they often arrive nervous and reserved, have felt alone and isolated in their experience since their diagnosis. During the event everyone shares stories and experiences, some exchange numbers, make new friendships and clients often express that they suddenly don’t feel so alone.”
There are no expectations placed on anyone.
“As someone who has walked in their shoes, to see our clients and their loved ones walk away with reassurance, validation and connectedness is amazing and plays a huge part in empowering them to live well with MS,” says Jess. Back to News stories
Friendship and support for the newly diagnosed