Okay Internet, we need to talk about cure evangelism.
Sometimes you’ll have friends who aren’t doing too well. It could be their mental health. It could be their physical health. Maybe it’s social anxiety, or depression, or fatigue, or something else. Whatever it is, they’ve posted about it to social media as a way of getting support and maybe feeling a bit better.
Believe it or not, there are correct and incorrect ways to respond to this.
Unless they’ve specifically requested advice, the correct ways include sending love, saying you hope they feel better soon, or offering to help if they need it. Incorrect ways include telling them that they should try yoga to fix their social anxiety, dancing to fix their depression, or bathing in coconut oil to fix their computer.
These things might have worked for you, but no matter how good your intentions are, the person you’re trying to help feel better probably doesn’t want advice, they want support and love instead.
What’s worse, if they’ve mentioned their condition to anyone at all, they probably keep getting the same advice. The advice you’ve given them is likely something they’ve already tried, or—more likely—you’ve asked them to do something which their condition prevents them from doing. This sort of advice isn’t just frustrating, it’s exhausting, and it makes people less likely to turn to social media for support in the future.
So please, care about your friends, look after them, but don’t cure evangelise.
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