Stop Being Sick Girl!

Yeah, can you believe that's something that was written on a get well soon card!? On my most recent visit to my grandma's house, I found a ton of stuff from my first hospital stay in a keepsake box. I decided to go through it and stumbled across a get well soon card one of my classes made for me. Literally , one of my classmates wrote "Stop being sick girl!" Love *****. I am not gonna post the person's name and to be completely honest I do not remember that classmate.


I want to use this moment as a teachable one. As someone with a critical disease, I have heard so many things that have been inappropriate due to timing or it just felt empty. I can only speak for myself when I say that some things I've been told in times of uncertainty did nothing for me.


Those things are what I call "empty" phrases or filler phrases. They do not add value but simply something to say when you don't know what to say. Empty phrases are things such as :

  • "Everything is gonna be ok"

  • "Wow, that's crazy"

  • "Stop being sick"

  • "You will be fine"


Make no mistake, in no way am I saying I don't appreciate your effort in trying to say something because I understand it can get awkward at times. I want to provide a couple of solutions in how you can support your loved one that may be going through a hardship.



  1. Be an active listener: listen to what they are saying. Pretend you guys are walking side by side. Do not get too far ahead or behind. Stay present.

  2. Affirm them: By doing this you are letting them know their feelings are valid. Repeat what has been said and share some truths about your loved one and their situation.

  3. "This is all new to you and you are afraid"

  4. "This is a lot for you but you are handling this well"

  5. " Wow I'm proud of you, I know this can be scary."

  6. Say NOTHING: I know this one can be really awkward. Sometimes it is better to say nothing at all especially, if no one asked. If you are asked "what should I do?" or "what do you think?" it's okay to tell them "I don't know what to say" or " I don't know what you should do"

  7. Offer help: ONLY do this if you truly intend on helping. Do not offer help just because it sounds good or makes you feel like a good person. People need real support during times of hardship. They need someone that will show up and not just offer help that does not come to fruition


I hope this post has encouraged you to improve how you support your loved ones. People need different support from different people so asking what they want or need from you is also not a bad idea.


Disclaimer: I am not encouraging you to neglect your boundaries. I am also not saying that you have been terrible support for your loved ones. I just want us all to improve the way we are connecting with those that we love. Do what you can within your boundaries!



xo Shay

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