Disney Information Station Logo

Go Back   The DIS Discussion Forums - DISboards.com > Just for Fun > Coping and Compassion
Find Hotel Specials & DIScounts
 
facebooktwitterpinterestgoogle plusyoutubeDIS UpdatesDIS email updates
Register Chat FAQ Tickers Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read





Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 04-11-2013, 04:10 PM   #1
KristaTX
♥DIS Veteran♥
I never knew that Fruit of the Looms were souvenirs from my state
 
KristaTX's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Fort Worth
Posts: 8,558

How Not to Say the Wrong Thing - Comfort In, Dump Out

I found this article to have some helpful advice for when people you know are going through difficult and painful situations. I posted it over on the Community Board, but someone suggested I post it here, too. It's so hard to know what to say sometimes, and so easy to say the wrong thing or something just kind of inappropriate. I hope I can remember it.

http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/...,2074046.story


Quote:
How not to say the wrong thing
It works in all kinds of crises – medical, legal, even existential. It's the 'Ring Theory' of kvetching. The first rule is comfort in, dump out.

Susan Silk and Barry Goldman
April 7, 2013

When Susan had breast cancer, we heard a lot of lame remarks, but our favorite came from one of Susan's colleagues. She wanted, she needed, to visit Susan after the surgery, but Susan didn't feel like having visitors, and she said so. Her colleague's response? "This isn't just about you."

"It's not?" Susan wondered. "My breast cancer is not about me? It's about you?"

The same theme came up again when our friend Katie had a brain aneurysm. She was in intensive care for a long time and finally got out and into a step-down unit. She was no longer covered with tubes and lines and monitors, but she was still in rough shape. A friend came and saw her and then stepped into the hall with Katie's husband, Pat. "I wasn't prepared for this," she told him. "I don't know if I can handle it."

This woman loves Katie, and she said what she did because the sight of Katie in this condition moved her so deeply. But it was the wrong thing to say. And it was wrong in the same way Susan's colleague's remark was wrong.

Susan has since developed a simple technique to help people avoid this mistake. It works for all kinds of crises: medical, legal, financial, romantic, even existential. She calls it the Ring Theory.

Draw a circle. This is the center ring. In it, put the name of the person at the center of the current trauma. For Katie's aneurysm, that's Katie. Now draw a larger circle around the first one. In that ring put the name of the person next closest to the trauma. In the case of Katie's aneurysm, that was Katie's husband, Pat. Repeat the process as many times as you need to. In each larger ring put the next closest people. Parents and children before more distant relatives. Intimate friends in smaller rings, less intimate friends in larger ones. When you are done you have a Kvetching Order. One of Susan's patients found it useful to tape it to her refrigerator.



Here are the rules. The person in the center ring can say anything she wants to anyone, anywhere. She can kvetch and complain and whine and moan and curse the heavens and say, "Life is unfair" and "Why me?" That's the one payoff for being in the center ring.

Everyone else can say those things too, but only to people in larger rings.

When you are talking to a person in a ring smaller than yours, someone closer to the center of the crisis, the goal is to help. Listening is often more helpful than talking. But if you're going to open your mouth, ask yourself if what you are about to say is likely to provide comfort and support. If it isn't, don't say it. Don't, for example, give advice. People who are suffering from trauma don't need advice. They need comfort and support. So say, "I'm sorry" or "This must really be hard for you" or "Can I bring you a pot roast?" Don't say, "You should hear what happened to me" or "Here's what I would do if I were you." And don't say, "This is really bringing me down."

If you want to scream or cry or complain, if you want to tell someone how shocked you are or how icky you feel, or whine about how it reminds you of all the terrible things that have happened to you lately, that's fine. It's a perfectly normal response. Just do it to someone in a bigger ring.

Comfort IN, dump OUT.

There was nothing wrong with Katie's friend saying she was not prepared for how horrible Katie looked, or even that she didn't think she could handle it. The mistake was that she said those things to Pat. She dumped IN.

Complaining to someone in a smaller ring than yours doesn't do either of you any good. On the other hand, being supportive to her principal caregiver may be the best thing you can do for the patient.

Most of us know this. Almost nobody would complain to the patient about how rotten she looks. Almost no one would say that looking at her makes them think of the fragility of life and their own closeness to death. In other words, we know enough not to dump into the center ring. Ring Theory merely expands that intuition and makes it more concrete: Don't just avoid dumping into the center ring, avoid dumping into any ring smaller than your own.

Remember, you can say whatever you want if you just wait until you're talking to someone in a larger ring than yours.

And don't worry. You'll get your turn in the center ring. You can count on that.


Susan Silk is a clinical psychologist. Barry Goldman is an arbitrator and mediator and the author of "The Science of Settlement: Ideas for Negotiators.
________________
__
__________________
KristaTX is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-11-2013, 05:17 PM   #2
mommasita
I am like HELLO IT IS TEN OCLOCK...Anderson is on

Has a sweetie who is Furbilicious
 
mommasita's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Montreal, Canada
Posts: 19,083
DISboards Moderator

I saw that.
Thanks for sharing.. Going to read more later..
__________________
It's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice.
mommasita is offline   Reply With Quote
|
The DIS
Register to remove

Join Date: 1997
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 1,000,000
Old 04-12-2013, 12:33 PM   #3
Pea-n-Me
Survivor
Call me crazy but I prefer the single bath
Nothing beats the Magic of a Disney Resort!
Will DIS from the Potty
Alice, how's it hanging?
 
Pea-n-Me's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: MA
Posts: 22,411

I like it. Great reference.
__________________



Post your best iPhone/smartphone pictures here!

All Star Music 2001/Polynesian Lagoon View Concierge 2002/Contemporary 2003/Disney Wonder 2003/Yacht Club and Disney Wonder 2004/Pop Century 2005/Dolphin and Pop Century MNSSHP 2005/Disney Magic and Pop Century 2006/Coronado Springs MNSSHP 2006/Dolphin and Disney Wonder 2007/Port Orleans Riverside 2008/Caribbean Beach 2009/Dolphin and Animal Kingdom Lodge Concierge 2011/Grand Floridian and Dolphin, MNSSHP 2013
Pea-n-Me is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-28-2013, 08:17 PM   #4
AlyssinWonderland
Lost in the Looking Glass
 
AlyssinWonderland's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Anchorage, AK
Posts: 374

Oh my goodness. I wish I had a chart like that I could have given out a couple of years ago when I had ovarian cancer. It's amazing some of the things my family and friends thought was appropriate to say or do. That's so intelligent they should hand it out at hospitals. Seriously. Brilliant way to explain that. Thank you for sharing.
__________________
Offsite 1995Caribbean Beach Resort 2001Port Orleans French Quarter 2002Disneyland Hotel 2003Caribbean Beach Resort 2005Caribbean Beach Resort 2007 Port Orleans Riverside 2010
AlyssinWonderland is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-10-2013, 08:15 PM   #5
gasperdam
Mouseketeer
 
gasperdam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Allentown,PA
Posts: 365

I really enjoyed this post. It is very helpful to me. I have a friend, her mom, and my mom all going through crisises right now. I will be carefully looking at the rings.
__________________
(DH) (ME) (DS 11) (DS 9) (DD 5) (DS 3)

gasperdam is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply



Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

facebooktwitterpinterestgoogle plusyoutubeDIS Updates
GET OUR DIS UPDATES DELIVERED BY EMAIL



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:23 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Copyright © 1997-2014, Werner Technologies, LLC. All Rights Reserved.