Monday, June 24, 2013

“You should feel lucky, it could have been worse”

A close relative said that to me the first time he saw me after one of my brain surgeries.

While I know he meant well, it was a particularly hurtful thing to hear. I couldn’t work. I was partially blind. My Lumosity scores were in the toilet and I couldn’t drive. I felt anything but "lucky"and he seemed oblivious to the world of hurt I was experiencing.

Here’s some other particularly insensitive advice/comments/observations that well-meaning but clueless friends and family have said (to others):

“God, you look awful!”*
“It’ll take time, but you’ll get over it.”
“Try to be strong for your children.”
“This was meant to happen” or “There was a reason for this.”
 “You should hear what happened to me.”
“I know how you feel.”

I’m thinking of creating an “IDIOT friend of the Month” award. In this case, IDIOT, stands for an “Ironically Demonically Insensitive Obnoxious Tongue.“ To commemorate the event, I may hire a sculpture to make a bust of somebody with a huge mouth and the word "IDIOT" stamped on their tongue. 

So send me the incredibly insensitive remark that somebody has said to you or, if you're a caretaker, your loved one (If you have a better name for this award, shoot me an email.)

*This comes from Ms. Letty Cottin Pogrebin’s wonderful book, How To Be A Friend To A Friend Who’s Sick.  It’s a great read and she can tell your IDIOT friend award winner what they should say. 

If your local library doesn’t have a copy, you can buy it on

Image credit: <a href=''>creatista / 123RF Stock Photo</a>

1 comment:

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