Don't Curse the Nurse!

Sharing support with stories & humor

Sometimes “Fine” is not fine.

on May 16, 2017

Here’s that post I mentioned would follow:

I think people say “You’ll be fine” for one of three reasons; they don’t know what to say, they don’t care and want to end the conversation, or they have a self- centered focus of such intensity that they believe these mere words coming out their mouths is all you need to hear.

Now, I know there are exceptions to this — the calculus teacher looking at the test you just turned in —he has the test key — the neighbor who watched you knock over a sprinkler head — he has a spare in his garage.

That’s not the stuff I’m talking about.

I’m talking about the fears and anxieties we have when a family member learns of abnormal biopsy results, when the sole bread winner in a household gets laid off, when a fight between couples results in one walking out.

You get the picture.

There is no guarantee.

And it is never more important to understand this than in medicine.

It’s not an exact science, and it never will be.

So, if you care about someone who’s going a trial with their health or is preparing for surgery, do this:

Just listen.

Don’t interrupt.

Just listen.

It’s usually all they need.



8 responses to “Sometimes “Fine” is not fine.

  1. joey says:

    Nicely done!
    My husband is becoming infamous for telling me I’m fine when I’m not, lol — bad stuff happens. “You’ll be fine” just doesn’t cut it with me.

    • Susan says:

      It’s been a while, but I remember, yes, the male species insidious use of ‘fine’ at times when they just shouldn’t …even the best of them…the trait must float more frequently to the Y chromosome!

  2. Beth says:

    I am glad doctors and nurses don’t generally hide the test results like they used to in years past. I want to know; I don’t want someone saying I’ll be just fine when I can’t be.

    • Susan says:

      I can allude to the issue for something like, lab work after a endoscopy patient that had lots of biopsies. I don’t have the education or authority to share what I understand the doctor is looking for. But, boy, I never tell anyone ” You’ll be fine.”

  3. Susan says:

    You are such an awesome nurse!

  4. Christy says:

    Great advice!

  5. writerinsoul says:

    There’s something patronizing (albeit probably well intended) about “You’ll be fine.” When someone says it to me I might respond, “How do you know?” or “You don’t know that.” It’s a way of dismissing or minimizing someone’s quite likely legitimate concerns. And– in the long run none of us end up “fine.” We’re fine only until we’re not.

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Chen Song Ping

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