6 things to never say to a friend who's sick (and 4 things to say).
Posted Jul 22 2011 11:00pm
My good friend (thanks Alana!) shared this article with me a while back and I’ve been meaning to write about it ever since.
I was reminded in particular about it when a friend recently informed me that his wife was sick and again today at the hospital while waiting for the umpteenth time to have (what felt like) all of the blood removed from my arm. It’s reminiscent of my self-imposed duty to make a list for folks of all of the things that should be done for a significant other, friend or loved one when they fall ill. The things I always wish people would do for me in those instances — and generally (luckily) do.
Bruce Feiler does an incredible job of summarizing things — you should definitely read the article — but I’ll tell you some of my favorites from his never ever list —Never ask what you can do to help. That’s right — just HELP. (This goes for all women — healthy or sick — and life in general in my opinion.)
—Never inundate a sick person with your miracle solution idea. “Yes, I tried the wheat-free/dairy-free/keyword-here-free diet.” This gets exhausting — I can tell you from several personal experiences — even if I’m quite sure everyone means well.
—Never say “You look great.” This is an especially mean thing to say to someone who is on/off steroids and/or may have lost/gained weight as a result of their recent, personal trauma.
All this said, I particularly love his advice on the things you should say in this situation. Read on and bon week-end!