Thuy Smith Outreach International
Thoughts and Prayers– sometimes this is all a person can offer and yet many times it’s a quick go to that is used way too often.
I’ve experienced this with my last accident. I had a person who was quick to offer me her thoughts and prayers and even assistance with anything I may need help with. I’m a very independent person, but I will ask for help if I felt I really needed it. When the time came that I did ask her for help, she continued to have excuses until it was to the point I was forced to find other assistance. Spare me your thoughts and prayers in the future lady.
When people are dealing with illness or chronic pain, in many cases including my own, we already feel like we don’t want to be a burden anymore than we have to. We are in many cases isolated and home bound. We are dealing with trying to find answers, processing our situation and feelings, and grieving for the person we once were and no longer will be due to new limitations. We are focused on getting physically well and maintaining our emotional and mental health at the same time.
There is a fine line between grieving and giving up hope. Don’t be so quick to think someone is just wallowing in self-pity or its just in their head. Nobody ever accused me of that, but I know how some people can lack empathy. In my case, some people were quick to give me their-Just do this list. Sometimes people have no real idea about your health and the intricacies involved. They have no idea how much research and advocacy you’ve already been doing for yourself. There is also the challenge of finding a good doctor who will actually listen to you and try to get to the root of what’s going on rather than want to minimize, dismiss, or take the easy way out by giving you medications or labeling you depressed.
I was fortunate to finally find a good doctor who not only listened, but was very knowledgeable with cases like mine. She confirmed many things that I had to do my own research on and then some.
Sometimes your friends and acquaintances on social media truly are supportive and thoughts and prayers are the only thing they can offer because they live across the country. Their sentiment may actually be quite sincere. In my case, some people checked in on me to see how I was doing. I believe many would actually help me out if they were closer. If this is all you can do, then its something. It means more than a person might think.
The important thing is to always be mindful of when it’s a time to act and follow-through for sometimes “thoughts and prayers” are simply not enough. It can actually add more salt to the wound.
On greater issues in the world, “thoughts and prayers” can simply be an excuse to not take any action. Sometimes a decision to do nothing makes a person culpable.