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Handling Difficult Health Questions
It’s a painful fact that many people who smoke eventually receive a cancer health diagnosis. Yes, they should have quit smoking, but do they really deserve a death sentence?
When we hear someone has lung cancer or throat cancer, we almost instinctively ask if the person smoked, probably out of the recent conditioning from the media and health departments that have so closely linked the two. Yet when someone dies of a heart attack, rarely does anyone immediately ask if the person was overweight. We’ve implicitly been told it’s OK to ask if the person smoked because smoking has unofficially been demonized by everyone. Weight issues are still highly sensitive, and therefore off limits, even if obesity is one of the leading factors for a heart attack.
We all have at least one or two bad habits, so is it fair to have those represent our life in death? (“Well, he was a smoker.”) What about emphasizing all the other right decisions, wonderful contributions and laughter that “smoker” shared with the world?
Have you ever been asked a prying question about your own health condition? What was it, and how did you respond? [MSNBC]