Poker face

When people say to me that I look well and ask me how are you. I just put my poker face on and say I'm ok thanks how are you. But in my mind I'm like if was ok I would be back at work and living life to the full. The thing is I don't want to make people sad so I say positive things. If you look at me you would think there is nothing wrong with me but you can't judge a book by its cover. What do you say when someone asks how are you?


13 Replies

  • I do exactly as you do, we have one friend that says you'll tell me that even if it's not true, I just smile, my husbands friends are the only two that really understand, one of them had a brain tumour that left him deaf in one ear when it was removed, but he's ok to work, there was no lasting damage to main areas of his brain, he was lucky. It's too difficult to explain the intricacies of the lasting problems. Take care and keep smiling :-). Janet

  • Most people don't actually want to know how you're feeling ; it's just a polite ritual to which I usually reply "I'm ok ; and you ?"

    But for those who I know are genuinely interested I will explain as briefly as possible that I'm either "struggling a bit" or "Been quite good recently". But I always keep my tone as light as possible and include some humour here and there. I may be cynical but I don't believe there are many people (apart from we on Headway) who can, or want to, grasp the issues of brain injury. Most people are only concerned with stuff that affects them directly and that's why so many of us are here, talking to those who really understand first hand how we 'are'.

    But I often want to just feel good about myself and on those occasions it's good to say "I'm fine" even though I'm faking it a little because it can have a surprisingly positive effect on one's state of mind.

    I really do hope you're feeling ok today Dave ! :-/

  • Cat3,

    Absolutely agree. Most people don't really want the truth. That's fair enough in my opinion. After all, the correct response to the greeting "How do you do?" is "How do you do?". Just white noise.

    That sets them apart from people close to you and from people here, who really understand.

    When strangers or acquaintances ask how I am I just say "not bad thanks, how about you?" They assume that not bad = good, which is not always the case (often I mean "not bad - worse than you can imagine), but it makes them comfortable and saves me the explaining they don't really want to hear and I don't want to give.

  • I have and am still recovering well, but I'm not what I was, so I tend to say I'm getting there. Rather than "I'm fine!" Or listing what isn't!

  • Fair to middling I'd my usual answer, it's very rarely that I'll admit things are not ticket boo.

    The people that matter normally can tell if it's a good day of not great.

    It good to have this place to air frustrations or share good moments too.

  • Likewise say "Fine " usually BUT was called a liar when I said that whilst in the Doctors waiting room

    It was pointed out that if I was fine I would not be at the Doctors

  • I'd have been tempted to say "why did you ask then, since apparently you already know?"

  • Usually say good days and bad days but we are getting there

  • I tend to say something like, good days bad days but I don't go into it.

    I have found also that no one really gets it at all when you look "ok". I used to have a professional job, (sorry if I said that before), and it was very specialised. People sometimes ask me something related to my old work and look in disbelief when I say I don't know. They think I am being off hand.

    I cant do my shopping without forgetting things even with a list!

    Reading what people have gone through, their experiences and feelings on here has been a great support to me. The forum didn't exist when I was first unwell.

    It is good to be able to look in here and see that it isn't just me, all best wishes

    Foggy x

  • Thank you for your reply. Have a great weekend!


  • Thanks Dave !

    The sun is out briefly and a nice will enjoy the moment, hope its a peaceful weekend for all of us!

    Foggy x

  • A simple 'I'm good thanks' is my usual.No need for detail with acquaintances.My closest people can tell by the way I am moving/responding as to how tired I am so no need to ask !

  • Thank you for your reply. Happy new year to you!


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