Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Sensitivity. Or lack there of.

I got a call from my friend last week asking me if I was religious. I chuckled and told her she clearly hasn't been paying attention. She proceeded to rant about a nurse at the hospital who said to her, in front of her dying 8 year old child, "God has a plan for everyone." The only thing worse could possibly be that she is going to a better place.

God does not have a plan that involves and 8 year old girl dying of a brain tumor. He/She/It just doesn't. I don't believe in God, but I do know that there is not a higher power sitting somewhere planning this out. I refuse to believe this to be true. This is a terrible tragedy. 

Having said that, she got news today that her daughter will not live to see Easter. The tumor has grown 20% in two weeks. 

She called me again tonight, crying, upset because someone else said something insensitive and along the lines of "God knows what he is doing" and she just had to walk away. 

I love you all no matter what religion you are. I understand the sentiment behind what is being said. But I ask all of you to keep in mind when someone is going through a loss...it is not always comforting to them to hear things like this. Saying that you will pray, fine. Saying that you believe this was the life this little girl was supposed to live is extremely hurtful to a non religious parent coping with this loss.

Just a thought on sensitivity. 

I spent time on the phone doing what I do best...listening and feeling awkward because I didn't know what to say other than I love you and I am so so sorry. When she told me what that person said, I told her next time to turn to them and say, "Well then God is a fucking dick!" And walk away. 

She laughed and said, "Maybe you are not the best person to talk about being sensitive to other people's feelings."

Touche. 

1 comment:

J o s e y said...

I'm a religious person, but I'd NEVER say that it was God's plan for a child to suffer. This article is awesome and gives good pointers from a Reverend - both about what NOT to say and also what TO say -- check it out.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rev-emily-c-heath/dealing-with-grief-five-t_b_2303910.html