Sunday, August 2, 2009

List reprinted from 54 Ways You Say Your Respond to "You look so good!"

The following is reprinted from Following the list are my comments/reactions to "You look so good."

54 Ways You Say You Respond to “You look so good!”

Over 1200 of you took our survey last year (you can still take it here if you want) and you shared how you respond to this compliment that pulls at the heartstrings.
Sometimes you just have to respond… a smile doesn’t say all that you want to say, but one of the temptations is to use sarcasm in our response.
Most of us can say that it depends on who says it. We may be more likely to smile and say, “If only it were true!” to a friend who doesn’t really get it. To the person behind at us the grocery store who commented about our groceries, we are more likely to say something sarcastic since we don’t have to deal with repercussions of a stressed relationship.
Just remember that our seemingly justifed bitter comments back at them can only alienate people more and it does nothing to create an awareness of invisible illness. But who of us doesn’t relate with wanting to say a few of these things on the list below?
The most telling comment I read was from a woman who simply said, “I wonder why they can’t see my pain in my eyes?” It’s a good reminder that though we sometimes think the world should accommodate our emotional needs, who around us is hurting for other reasons (divorce, loss of job, loss of loved one, etc.) and they are wondering about us, “Why can’t she see the pain in my eyes?”
Be sure to add your own at the bottom in the comments section!

I am hangin’ in there…
I am so blessed. God is so good.
Drugs are a wonderful thing
I have my good days and I have my bad days.
I clean up well.
I have my ‘good’ days….but this isn’t one of them!
Thanks, I wish I felt better.
That’s a perfect example of how you can never judge a book by it’s cover.
Thanks, but there are many aspects of MS which you don’t see … would you like to know more about it?
That’s what most people think since pain can’t be seen most of the time. Have you heard about Invisible Illness Week? It’s really helpful to let people now that most illness is invisible.
I’m trying to appreciate that fact. I know the day may come when I have to use a wheelchair or a cane, and my illness will be more visible.
You should be on the inside.
Thanks. I have more to be grateful for than I have to complain about - which means I have a LOT to be grateful for!
Well I guess I did good job on my makeup, because I am having a hard time to tell the truth.
…And that’s all that really matters, isn’t it?
Powder and paint, make you what you ain’t!
It took a lot of work to look like this.
It’s God shinning through me
It’s nice of you to think so, but you’re missing the pain and agony that I really am in.
And you look so wise. Looks can be deceiving though, huh?
I’m having a “good face” day.
Yeah. My kid thinks it’s cool I’m an ill person working under-cover!
I do a great job hiding how I really feel.My life is still very challenging and probably will always be, but I am hanging in there, keeping a positive faith, and gratitude as THE attitude. Thanks for their concern.
I’m trying my best to do well OVER my circumstances instead of being under them!
It’s up and down.
I’m still struggling, but it IS nice to have a day when I am able to pull myself together and make it out of the house!
I’m not complaining about my looks.
I’m very good at pretending.
Good, because if I looked like I feel it would scare you to death.
Actually, I still am really hurting…
I am 36 years old outside but 85 inside
Thank you. I’m on my way to the Oscars.
Thanks, I’m grateful for this good day.
Things aren’t always what they seem.
Praise God, I’m glad that he enables me to look so much better than I feel.
Thanks, that’s God’s joy shining through!
Have you ever heard of the spoon theory?
I am upright which is better the alternative
Thanks, want to swap bodies for a few days?
Thanks, I guess I am fortunate that I have an illness that can’t be seen.
Thanks. I like good days.
Want to step inside my skin?
It’s amazing what a shower can do. I guess I am all cried out for now
Thanks…I wish I felt it!
I’m not complaining about my looks.
I’m very good at pretending.
Looks can be deceiving (and smile)
Thank God for makeup!
Thank you for caring. I try to act like I feel better than I really do.
Thanks, I am trying to even though it will never go away. i just try to remember things could be worse.
I’d be great if it wasn’t for the pain.
I’d complain but who wants to listen.
If I can’t feel good, at least I am determined to look good!
I’m in good shape for the shape I am in!
What do you say? Or what would you say if you could say anything (keep it clean!)
* This list can be reprinted. Please add the following at the end: This list is compliments of National Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week at, based on a survey of over 1200 respondents. Get involved in Invisible Illness Week each year during September, including our 5-day virtual conference online.
A note from ChyvonneB in response to the reprinted article/list, "You Look So Good."
Words are only words. But as we know all too well, words and actions of others can sting. As you know, I've been grappling with "stinging" comments. "Oh, you shouldn't worry what others think" is a good response. I SHOULD NOT worry about what others think or say. That is true. However, the point is that some of those 'stingers' do slip into my consciousness and get to me.

My goal is to become "immune" to ignorance and rudeness or at least handle it much differently and not internalize it. Heck, some people make a daily ritual of seeing who they can piss off and offend. Why let someone get their jollies from intentionally trying to offend me? Not worth it...

Unfortunately, society IS driven by sensory perception and interpretation (i.e. appearances, sounds, etc.). That's just how it is. So, comments like "You look good today" or even "You sound good today" are commonplace. However, to a chronically ill person, certain comments/actions can be perceived or interpreted as being sarcastic, rude, insensitive, and nasty. It just depends on the person they're coming from and their issues. Notice I said THEIR issues.

Realistically, most people who make those types of comments to a Chronically Ill person are being genuine and actually feel that "You look good, today." But, there are those 'serial offenders' (those who prey on others in a targeted or random manner-it just depends). When a 'serial offender' strikes, the mind goes there: "Wonder if they are implying that I look too well to be ill?," "Wonder if they think...?", "Wonder if..." The wonder ifs could go on and on.

The 'serial offenders' make us question those who are really just making an innocent, good-hearted comment. We must not give the 'serial offenders' power!

Bottom line: Some people are simply jerks and they don't matter. Some people are simply occasional jerks and they don't matter. Many people are caring and concerned individuals who just don't get it. Many people are caring and concerned individuals who fully get it.

Bottom line: I have too much to be concerned with (i.e. living life and living the best I can with what I'm going through). I don't have the time to invest my energy into 'serial offenders' who come off as jerks or into those who just don't get it and won't get it.

Perhaps, receiving "interesting" comments that can be taken any way are just part of being a person who has a Chronic Illness or illnesses. Perhaps, I have offended (unintentionally) someone who has a Chronic Illness with an inappropriate comment. I wouldn't want them to be angry towards me. But, then again, I'm not a serial offender. I don't just go around fully loaded with remarks that are MEANT to sting. In fact, I know a Chronically Ill person who has the nerve to be a 'serial offender.' Go figure. Perhaps it is best to 'avoid' serial offenders or at the very least ignore 'serial offenders' when they choose to be offensive.

I cannot be overly sensitive to a casual question. I must refuse to live that way. Those who are trying to be a thorn in my side are becoming more and more obvious. While those who are genuine and sincere are obvious as well. Then you have those who are a thorn in the...on one day and genuine and sincere on the next. Then you have complete strangers who can fit into either category (i.e. waiters, customer service workers, etc.). It's all so complicated.

While my reactions may not always be perfect to imperfect offenses, I am working on becoming less reactive (internally as well as overtly) to stuff that just doesn't matter. Some days I will win the battle and some days I may not. It just depends on my mood. I'm tryin', though.

But, I am the one who has control over who get's the power. And, I give it to myself and those who support me!

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