Try to understand my situation. Yup, that's something I desperately want from those around me without fibro, but sadly I can't get it. I mean, I understand, after all there is no way they could ever do it, unless they suffered from it. So it's futile, but it would be nice if they could understand a bit, at least be thoughtful enough not to say "oh me too"when I something like "I'm so achy right now". Not cool.
My friends with fibro have talked about this. The main thing seemed to be that they don't want to be babied or pitied. It makes them (according to them) feel like a person who can't do anything except gather pity. So that's a big one.
They want understanding of the illness so that when a friend hears that they can't get out of bed, can't go shopping, can't go out for girl's night, etc. that they really mean it and shouldn't hear things like "aw, come on, two hours out won't hurt!"
Bottom line from what I've gathered is that they want to be thought of as very strong because of what they face and deal with each day... not weak because that's letting fibro win. When "poor dear" comes in, many hear that as weakness. I'm thinking "I *so* admire your strength for fighting this!" would go a lot further.
That would be nice, but I think you also need to understand the depth of her horrible and constant pain. Maybe read up on a medical site. What you're calling "complaining" is actually her reaching out and sharing... hoping someone listens.
I've heard one of my friends scream out that very thing when one of her family members said something to her about it... "I'm not complaining, I'm trying to share how I feel!"