December 27, 2017

What Your Hurting Friend Might Really Mean When She Says She's "Okay"


Oh, mama. I have such a heart-wrenching number of people in my life who have experienced trials and grief and loss lately.

Some of the losses are due to literal, physical death—unexpected, too-soon passings of people my sweet friends cannot imagine life without.

Some of the losses, though, have been caused by other kinds of death: the death of dreams or hopes or expectations of what would or could or should be. I’ve tried to check in with these women as they’ve journeyed through their seasons of sorrow—and admittedly, have done an unsteady job of it. Often, when I’ve asked how they are, they’ve answered, “I’m doing okay.” By which I understand they do not necessarily really mean "okay.”


From what I can glean from these brave friends and from my own experiences in OK-land, “I’m doing okay,” is sometimes just the easiest, most socially acceptable way of communicating, “I’m not good or fine. I’m something else, something complicated and messy that I’m not even sure about myself.”
I don’t pretend for one second to fully grasp what my friends mean when they say they’re “doing okay.” But I'm so honored to be over on Her View From Home, sharing a few possibilities that seem like they might honor the truth...


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2 comments:

  1. You are so good at knowing when a friend just needs to know you care!! <3

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    1. Oh my goodness, I do not feel at all adequate to those kind words, and yet they comprise one of the nicest compliments I've ever been blessed to receive. Thank you so much, sweet Lisa. I know for a fact you are so good at this, too. xoxo

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I'd love to hear from you! Feel free to tell me what you really think. Years ago, I explained to my then-two-year that my appointment with a counselor was "sort of like going to a doctor who will help me be a better mommy." Without blinking, she replied, "You'd better go every day." All of which is just to say I've spent some time in the school of brutal honesty!