By Kris McFalls
I often hear from IG Living readers who are frustrated with questions and advice from well-meaning, but slightly misguided friends and family. When trying to show support, they offer advice and make suggestions that make us want to scream. But, instead, we bite our tongues and give a pleasing response in hopes of making them feel better for having helped. For your entertainment, I’ve listed some of the more popular questions posed by these well-meaning people, along with some suggested responses.
Do you think you might be depressed?
What we would like to say: Wow, imagine being depressed after years of being poked and prodded, having chronic infections and unrelenting pain, only to find out that a simple blood test could have solved the mystery years ago.
What we do say: Wow, I never thought of that. Thanks for your concern.
Do you think more exercise would help?
What we would like to say: Yea, the cane is for self defense, the walker is so that I can get better parking and, for extra attention, I use a wheelchair.
What we do say: Maybe working with a physical therapist would help, thanks for the advice.
Have you tried taking Echinacea? It can really boost the immune system.
What we would like to say: Do you really think big insurance companies would pay thousands of dollars for a plasma product if a simple herb could make my immune system whole again? You cannot boost what you don’t have. What part of zero times zero do you not understand?
What we do say: That really works for you? Huh, imagine that.
Are you sure you don’t have any allergies?
What we would like to say: Well, I felt like I had just been attacked by a porcupine after I left the allergist’s office, but, maybe you’re onto something.
What we do say: Maybe I should try some Benadryl.
How are you feeling? You look good to me.
What we would like to say: Let me think about that for a moment. I spent over an hour in the bathroom and that was just to use the toilet; it took me three cups of water to get all my pills down, and I want to spew my breakfast on the next person that asks me how I feel and then tells me what my answer should be.
What we do say: Oh I feel pretty good today, thanks.
Do you think your faith is strong enough?
What we would like to say: Seriously? The devil made me do it.
What we do say: I’ll pray about that one.
Now it’s your turn. Give us your feedback. What comments and questions, if stated one more time, would send you over the edge? As much as you would like to fire off a snappy comment, how do you reply and turn those well-meaning suggestions around so that you truly feel supported? Post your replies here - let’s start a discussion!