When we are diagnosed with a life threatening or limiting disease we are often told to “keep our spirits up”, “stay strong”, “be brave” or “fight it”. These pervasive cultural narratives suggest that the power to change our prognoses lies with us. It is suggested that our negativity or fears will be made manifest in our illness and we will succumb to disease simply because we didn’t face it with positivity or battle hard enough. Clearly this is untrue. This attitude that a cheery disposition will help us get better is a fallacy with no basis in medical treatment at all. So why is it that we still keep hearing and telling these stories?
|Published - 2015