General Question

SuperMouse's avatar

They don't want sympathy, they don't want to hear it stinks. What else is there?

Asked by SuperMouse (30788points) April 30th, 2009

This morning a friend of mine told me he isn’t feeling well. He has the flu (hopefully not swine flu) and an old dental problem is flaring up. When I expressed my sympathy, he made it clear he doesn’t want me to tell him I’m sorry he is miserable. He also doesn’t want me to tell him how bad it stinks that he is sick, or to try to solve the problem (by telling him to go to the doctor or dentist, etc). So what else is there? I’m not sure what else there is to say. Any ideas?

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19 Answers

chyna's avatar

Just take him some chicken noodle soup and don’t say anything.

FrankHebusSmith's avatar

I just wanted to note, that swine flu is no more dangerous than regular flu. It’s only getting so much media attention because it mutated from an animal form of the flu, and we haven’t made any of the flu vaccine for this strain.

Your chances of surviving this flu are just as good (if not better) than if you caught the regular flu.

loser's avatar

See if you can get him laughing. It’s the best medicine!

MrKnowItAll's avatar

Tell him how your problems are much worse.

SuperMouse's avatar

@MrKnowItAll ahhh!! You must be a trumper! You know what I mean, when someone tells you they are tired you say “Tired? You don’t know tired until you’ve stayed up for three weeks straight!” lol4rl!!

@westy81585, great point, thanks.

@chyna, it is soooooo hard not to say anything! Especially when I can’t be there in person, just talk to him on the phone!

Likeradar's avatar

Some people just like to complain to get it off their chest, and don’t want any real response.
I like @chyna‘s and @loser‘s ideas. Do something to brighten his day without mentioning his problems.

mamabeverley's avatar

If you can’t be there, and are not close by, see if there is a place near by that can deliver him some hot soup, like a chinese place for egg drop soup (if he is not vegan). Hopefully he will appreciate the sentiment.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

He’s unhappy because he’s not feeling well. There’s not much you can say that will alleviate this. You gotta roll with it.

SuperMouse's avatar

@mamabeverley he is vegan, how funny that you mentioned that! I do like that idea though, of having some comfort food delivered. My sister had surgery recently and it is wonderful how many people have stepped up and brought the family food. I know she really appreciates it too, what a great idea! Lurve!

mamabeverley's avatar

@SuperMouse Thank you, I tried! Look on the internet at restaurants in his area, they may be able to provide something and so many places have online menus now. Good Luck, men want to be babied when they are sick!

eponymoushipster's avatar

buy him some pr0n.

fireside's avatar

Some people just like to feel sorry for themselves when they feel sick and any attempt to reach out will be greeted with a similar reaction. He just wants to feel better.

Tell him you hope he feels better soon and leave it at that.
(though food is always a good idea!)

knitfroggy's avatar

I would tell him…“Well that’s the pitts”...what else can you say?

rooeytoo's avatar

According to the Men are from Mars, Women from Venus book, this is a male-female thing. When someone tells a problem to a man, they feel they have to fix it, but the book says, women can just listen and empathize without feeling the need to fix.

Sooooooooo maybe this person just wanted to complain a bit and that’s it and all you have to do is listen and go ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

SuperMouse's avatar

@rooeytoo I must be a woman from Mars, because I am soooo the one who wants to solve all the problems! It is so hard for me not to want to fix things. But I will keep trying to resist the urge!

rooeytoo's avatar

@SuperMouse – I thought the whole book was pretty much off the mark. Yeah I am a fixer too but as you said, try to resist the urge. Remember the 3 c’s, I didn’t cause it, I can’t control it and I can’t cure it, if I practice them I usually stay out of trouble!

augustlan's avatar

SuperMouse, you are a good friend. I guess all you can do for this guy is go with @fireside‘s suggestion. Wish him a speedy recovery.

Dorkgirl's avatar

How about “bummer, dude, hope you feel better soon. Give me a call when you’re up for some fun”.

cecildooderbop's avatar

It’s really NOT that big of a deal….

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