“I viewed the trailer for CAREGIVERS and was so moved by its subject matter, presentation, intensity, honesty, and phenomenal significance. So many kudos to you for doing this! And your workshop sounds amazing too. Do physicians ever take it? It would be wonderful if they did.
Humor was a saving modality for me as I dealt daily with patients having pain and suffering from very difficult and chronic rheumatic diseases. It helped to get me through and hopefully helped the patients as well…. I also found that gratitude for the most miniscule things was also helpful.”
Dr. Don Friedman, 12/30/2012
An excerpt from Dr. Friedman’s article (with a link to the full article) follows:
“…Humor has a significant role to play in fostering resilience. Resilience is the ability of a person to bounce back from stressful situations or events, such as an illness or an emotionally traumatic occurrence. In the specific situation of illness, it is important for the patient to live in the present and what is going on around him/her; humor helps to focus on the present and even aid in making the present more acceptable and bearable. Humor can thus enable the ill individual to deal with the more difficult aspects of an illness so that he/she can bounce back more easily. The moments of happiness humor can engender make the bouncing back more likely. Humor can also help a patient connect with family, friends, and healthcare providers. It can improve communication and help support people feel more comfortable with the patient and his/her illness. In other words, humor can promote honesty when it is needed most. (italics added) If a particular therapy is difficult, such as chemotherapy and its challenging side effects, humor about those side effects may be able to lessen the associated stress. Humor can also offer the encouragement to move forward and maintain hope, rather than getting stuck focusing on misery because one is ill. Shifting one’s perspective, as mentioned above, and finding any bright side at all are powerful tools. And finally, being able to laugh at oneself can help find the strength to go on, frequently because it helps point out the strengths one has underneath…”