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Helping Others through the Synergy of Science and Caring
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« Crash | Main | Stigma of Illness (Part III) »

April 17, 2011


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Thank you for this post. It speaks directly to an experience I had again yesterday: revealing my weakness and, although the other person was well-intentioned, I came away feeling inferior and ashamed for not rising above my cirumstances. I hadn't given this person the whole picture so she didn't understand. But I could see that explaining more would increase the risk. Although I have been asked by others to speak publicly about my experiences, again I see that I am not ready, and perhaps never will be. Thank you for giving me permission to take care of myself.

Wendy S. Harpham, MD

Dear Marcy,
I'm so glad the post helped. The beauty of Healthy Survivorship is that it respects people's individuality. Instead of offering one-size-fits-all "right" answers, it guides people to the "best" answers for them at this moment in time.

I'll be pursuing how Healthy Survivors deal with stigma in my next post, too.

With hope, Wendy

Jan Hasak

Thank you for pointing out that we survivors need not be advocates. Many want to forget their illness and move on to as normal a life as possible. It's important to let them know they are free to do just that. It puts a stigma on people with diseases when we expect them to "pay it forward" when they shouldn't have any pressure beyond what they can bear.


Absolutely right. I like being an advocate--sometimes. Other times I just need to focus the rest of my life, which has its own demands.

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