Sometimes the most well intentioned ‘compliment’ comes out completely wrong, and some people are just plain ignorant – either way, some times the things said to sick people are shocking.
I was having a conversation the other day about this with a few other chronically sick people, and we were laughing about some quite hard – black humour is very popular amoungst the suffering. What can I say? If nothing else, misery loves company.
Here’s a few that I’ve heard said to me, and had recanted by others – there may be a bit of paraphrasing, but I’ll try to keep them as true to effect as possible. I assure you this is meant in jest as well – I don’t mean to sound mad about any of this – I share it for laughs only, as I assure you that’s all I do about it. At the time, something might be annoying, but I’m pretty quick to forgive, and either forget, or make a joke out of it. 😉 I highly invite anyone reading to add more.:
– Man … Cancer?! Well, it couldn’t have happened to a better person! (It was pretty obvious that they were trying to say something along the lines of how they admired how well I was handling the situation, and implying others might not handle it so well, but still – it was pretty darn funny.)
– Diabetes eh? Wow – my aunt had that. Went blind, and lost her leg! (Yup – some people just don’t think before they talk.)
– Celiac disease? Oh yeah … I did the gluten-free diet for a bit. (“?????? WHAT? BITE ME! You most CERTAINLY did NOT live this evil dietary restricted life you ignorant ______! This isn’t a choice – it’s a life-sentence!”)
– Curveature of the spine? Oh yeah – I have back pain sometimes too. (Sigh – stupid people everywhere obviously.)
– So, which scrotum is sore sir? (I swear to God, it was a nurse – I seriously thought I was on Candid Camera or something … how these people get degrees, I don’t know.)
– Oh my God! What’s that gross shit all over your arm? (“It’s f’ing psoriasis you bastard – I can’t really help it. I’m sorry that it hurt so bad today that I couldn’t bear to put sleeves over it …….” What I actually did was just walk away – one of the few times in life I was stunned silent.)
– Cancer? WOW. I can’t believe you’re so upbeat! I’d be alone in a dark corner crying! (Well THANK YOU VERY MUCH for the INSPIRATIONAL speech! I know the person was trying to compliment me, but still – that one grated on me a bit. When you hit the level where you’re just trying to not be sitting alone in a corner crying, let alone act upbeat and optimistic, the last thing you need is a reminder. Still – I think it took less than a few seconds to stop rolling my eyes at it, and see the humour. I think the person who said it was pretty embarassed, and was only delayed in apologizing because they were too busy pulling their foot out of their mouth. lol)