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January 7, 2020 at 12:37 pm #14307Jenny LivingstonKeymaster
On Instagram, I’ve started a series called Real Talk Tuesday where we delve into the parts of CF (and life in general) that are sometimes difficult to talk about. Join the conversation on Instagram or here in the forum.
𝐑𝐄𝐀𝐋 𝐓𝐀𝐋𝐊 𝐓𝐔𝐄𝐒𝐃𝐀𝐘: 𝐔𝐍𝐒𝐎𝐋𝐈𝐂𝐈𝐓𝐄𝐃 𝐀𝐃𝐕𝐈𝐂𝐄
“Try CBD oil. Stop taking those toxic medications. Push yourself a little more. Don’t push yourself too hard! Keto fixes everything. Have you tried meditation? Pray more. Take these vitamins. Drink more water! Have you considered an exorcism?”
Raise your hand if you’ve heard these (or other) nuggets of wisdom from a well-meaning friend or a total stranger on the internet.
Receiving unsolicited health advice is a given when you have a chronic illness. We, as humans, have an innate desire to fix things. Unfortunately, that also applies to other humans that we assume are “broken” and in need of aid.
Giving someone unsolicited health advice implies that you know more about their condition than they do, they haven’t done everything within their power to help themselves, and they aren’t capable of researching their options and making the best decision for themselves.
This is not to say that all advice is unwanted, because I’ve gotten some great advice regarding my health! The difference is – sometimes it’s asked for and sometimes it’s aggressively thrown at me without any warning or desire on my part.
If someone wants advice regarding their health, I promise you, they’ll ask for it!
But if you absolutely must share your thoughts on something, there is a proper way to do it. For example, saying something like, “Hey, If you’d like more info about ___, let me know,” is so much better than, “You MUST try ___. If you don’t, you’ll be sick forever. Also, CF isn’t even a genetic disease, it’s a mineral deficiency.”
(That last part is something I’ve actually been told.)
To you well-meaning friends who just want to help, I know your heart is in the right place. I do! But empathy and sincere questions from you feel so much better than trying to be fixed.
Friends with CF, how do you deal with unsolicited advice? What’s the weirdest advice you’ve been given?
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