social, health, political imagery through the lens of G J Huba PhD © 2012-2021

When you are “sick,” people come up and ask how you are. The stereotyped answer — if you want reassure them — is “fine.” With dementia and other major diseases, such a response is misleading and can lead to perceptions that the disease is less than your family is saying or that you are getting better or that it’s no big deal to have you untreatable, incurable, scary, and isolating disease.

I’ve learned that there are other things you can say to reassure people without over- or under-stating the problem and at the same time complimenting your family, your doctors, and other factors. I find one response especially effective. Click on the mind map to see my answer and the context and effects from using it.




Post a comment
  1. September 30, 2015

    Hello George,
    Wanted to let you know that your article is included in the dementia “Symptom Perspectives” monthly links tonight, September 30, 2015
    I would like to thank you for sharing your lived experience. My hope is that these words and projects can become valuable resources for change in relationships, treatment, and policies.
    Much thanks,

    • September 30, 2015

      Tru, thanks for including me. It is an honor. George

  2. August 25, 2015

    LOL. Last week I was thinking about writing on this same thing; I absolutely hate being asked “How are you”? Never really know whether they will be impatient at a more-than-one-word answer. If they are merely saying “Hello” why don’t they say … “Hello”.
    Have always been uncomfortable with answer of “Fine”. — it does not really say anything. Is not a real connection, and is often actually untrue. THANK you for excellent blog entry. 😀 — Tru

    • August 25, 2015

      Hi Tru, thanks again for one of your lovely comments. I suspect that many of the readers will also be surprised to know that people living well with dementia also LOL and ROFL and emoticon just like the rest of the world. I have found that friends and family and interested individuals always like to hear the long answer I use. I guess that about 98% totally get it and like the information. They also start to interact in a more deep way with you about being a PWD. The longer answer means you know and trust that they can understand and welcome that. George

Leave a Reply