1401 Charlestown Road
Phoenixville, PA 19460
800.432.8322 | 610.935.0450
1401 Charlestown Road | Phoenixville, PA 19460 | 610.935.0450
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"Humor is contagious, laughter is infectious. Both are good for your health."
William Fry, MD
Sickness has a way of bringing out the best and worst in all of us. When we are sick, we want everyone to understand us. We want them to say just the right words and to do just the right things to help reduce our suffering. We want them to "mourn with those who mourn."
But when others are sick and we are healthy, the tables turn upside down. How easy it is to be too busy to understand. How hard it is to say just the right words and do just the right things to reduce their suffering. How hard it is to "mourn with those who mourn."
One of the most extreme examples of saying the wrong thing to a sick person occurred when my father was gravely ill. Shortly before his death a relative said that perhaps he was in that condition because his faith was weak or he had sin in his life. I still remember his deep pain as he shared with his wife (my mother) that he had no idea what this relative was talking about.
A friend of mine with a terminal illness told me about a website that captures some of the unwise remarks people share around those with chronic diseases, i.e. www.butyoudontlooksick.com. The purpose of the site is "about living life to the fullest with any disability, invisible disease, or chronic pain and hopes to provide answers to the endless question of "But you don't look sick?"
At first I wasn't sure how I should interpret what these people meant. Their interviews, personal essays, poetry, medical information, message board, and even the column on "Sick Humor" were there to help the healthy understand the sick.
Here are a few of the top ten worst suggestions given to someone with a chronic illness:
Valley Forge Christian College is a private Christian College located in Chester County, Pennsylvania, 35 miles northwest of downtown Philadelphia. VFCC offers on its sprawling park-like campus, as well as online, 57 undergraduate and six graduate degrees in the Arts, the Sciences and the Professions. The college's mission is to prepare individuals for a life of service and leadership in the church and in the world.