The other night I was talking to an old friend and he made a comment to me that really just kind of hit me the wrong way. I explained to him why it wasn't okay to say what he said and why it bothered me. I know he didn't mean to upset me with his words, he was honestly just trying to be encouraging and it really made me think about the things I hear so often that people mean to be encouraging but really just end up sounding rude.
Here's a few...
"You have SUCH a great attitude, you'll be walking in NO time!" / Unfortunately, my attitude isn't going to make my legs work.. it just makes the journey a bit more fun. (L:
"Just let me help you!" / I am very independent as a person. I always have been and I won't let my chair take that from me. Yes, I do need help doing things and I really appreciate people being kind BUT when I clearly say that I don't need help and people keep pushing to help me, it gets under my skin.
"You running a marathon yet?" / I can understand if someone asked who may not actually know, but these "jokes" mostly come from my family.. and I know it's supposed to be funny, so normally I'll laugh it off.. but honestly making obvious jokes about my recovery really make me sassy. Clearly I'm still using a wheelchair.
"Just pray. God will heal you!" / My words are going to fail me here.. it's hard to explain why this bothers me. I guess it's because using the word "heal" makes it sound like my situation is a bad thing.. and I guess to most people it is seen as a bad thing.. but here's the truth about it....
I've been much happier since my wreck and I know that's hard for people to grasp and understand. Yes, I lost my ability to walk, to control my body and I have some limitations because of it. However, being injured has brought me closer to the people in my life who really matter, it's allowed me to break out of my shell and become the person I've always wanted to be. (Always a work in progress though). I've had so many amazing opportunities given to me that would have never happened had I been able bodied. I've been able to share my story with so many people, write for MTV and so many other cool things. I've met some of my best friends because of our injuries and I get to travel to meet them and attend a wonderful therapy center. God really has blessed me so much through this and I hate that people only focus on "Well, you can't walk so you MUST be miserable."
.. because I'm not. I have bad days just like everyone does but I love where I am in life right now... and I honestly don't know if any of this would have happened had I not been injured.
I understand that some of you are going to read this and be like "wow, she's rude" and I guess I may be coming off a little strong but I want to explain why these things bother ME. They may not bother someone else and I understand that some people just have questions and are trying to be nice. I don't usually get offended or upset when people have questions because I want to educate them and I'm totally open about things but most of these things are said by people who know me personally and that's why I wanted to explain MY reasoning's here.
What are some things people have said to YOU trying to be helpful but really sounded rude?