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Saturday, January 2, 2010

"You are so strong!" -- Humor

A friend once told me

When someone says: “you’re so strong,”

What they really mean is: “your life sucks and I’m so glad I’m not you!”

Please daven (or send happy, healing thoughts) for RivkA bat Teirtzel.

With love and optimism,


Leah Goodman said...

ain't that the truth!

adena said...


Anonymous said...

This is sad, but true.


Ilana said...

In all fairness, I think it also means "you are handling this totally crummy situation you have, really well."

Baila said...

That is the one thing that totally irked me when people said that to me when my daughter was sick.

Anonymous said...

Outright pity is worse.

Sarah said...

Well, apparently Hashem thinks we are strong, if you go on the theory that we aren't given anything we can't handle. But, if you have to remind yourself to say that phrase, you already feel like you can't handle it.

The whole "you are so strong" thing has always bothered me,also. Especially at those times that life feels so hard,and I may feel very weak.

But you are strong... all us survivors are. We subscribe to the notion that there is no other choice other than do the best with what we've got. I call that the will to live, not just stam strength. And yeah, I guess it is a conscious decision.

OK, all that philosophizing aside, I can relate to the "it sucks to be you" thing. I hear that in those words, too. Sometimes I want people to say "it must be very tiring to have pain all day", or "you are allowed to not look strong all the time. It's OK". Or even, you look good, you'd never know! That one bugs me.

Anyway, only we know what strength we feel or don't feel. To all the others who feel free to comment, what can ya do.
Shavuah tov!

Anonymous said...

I am hoping to link to this post, if that's OK.

Something Different said...

Oh man, that is hilarious!

Still laughing...

RivkA with a capital A said...

LeahGG, Adena, Karen -- yeah!

Square Peg -- could be, but these statements are not contradictory -- besides, it's a JOKE!

Baila -- I can understand that

Tesya -- true. You are more than welcome to link to any of my posts!

Sarah -- one day I am going to post (read: rant) about this whole "Hashem doesn't give us anything we can't handle" nareshkeit. I know the idea helps some people, but it clearly is NOT TRUE.

There are people out there who commit suicide -- clearly God gave them something they could NOT HANDLE!

I always wonder what someone, who had a family member or friend who committed suicide, feels when they hear that statement!

Yeah, I am strong -- Other ways of describing that same trait: stubborn, domineering, bossy

It has nothing to do with cancer. Ask my little sister; she'll tell you that I've always been that way!

In all seriousness, for some people, it can be very helpful to hear affirmations like "you are strong."

As you point out, a few words of empathy can also go a long way! "It must be tiring...." or "it's ok not to..."

Interesting how a joke can trigger such a serious discussion.....

Unknown said...

I totally agree.
The full meaning is:
Since I'm not as 'strong' as you are, G-d won't do it to me, because he knows I cannot handle it, so I'm safe..
I heard this sentence so many times.
It becomes harder to stay calm.

Shevy said...

When I hear "I don't know how you do it" I know it really means, "Better you than me!"

I heard it a lot during the years after my first marriage broke up when I was a working mother with 3 young kids.

I hear it now sometimes because I juggle work, my own 7 yo and taking care of a couple of my granddaughters.

RivkA with a capital A said...

Naama & Shevy -- thanks for your added insight

Anonymous said...

youre so strong is a first cousin once removed from ,wow you look great,you must be feelin g good.which means,if youre not ,i dont want to know.to all you sweet well meaning friends,i have a sickness,and you arent a card carrying blind or to say it pc,a visually challened person,and yes i own a mirror,and geuss what?im not blind either,so do us all a favor,if you dont want to ,know ,shut up,if you think you are being nice,no dice,and btw,relax,its not contaigous and we are sick not stupid, and sorry to all the sensitive souls out there for not being funny or nice