Chewing it over with Stinky

Dear Stinky, I have been off work and will be returning soon, after a year of treatment for my illness. I am very apprehensive, as it is a very cutthroat, corporate world. My biggest fear is the stress level. I have decided that when I return, I will not hide my illness as it is a part of my life and I shouldn’t have to feel shame about myself. This place is one big rumour-mill and people can be very self centered and egotistical for attention. Stinky, do you have advice as to how I may alleviate some of the inevitable politics and stress that are going to happen upon my return to work? I have already talked to my wife and family about demoting myself, giving me less responsibility, so I will not be in the limelight so much. Less money, less headaches. I would love to leave, but it’s my only income. Thanks.

Dear Nardzwarz, Congratulations on the successful completion of such a long and difficult Medical treatment, I hope you and your family have a happy, healthy life. I think you have answered the money issue already, after being off work so long the lower paying, less stressful job will seem like a lot of money compared to now, and allow you more time to enjoy life again. If and when you feel stronger and the need for more money later, you can always put on your tail and work your way back into the rat race. I think its a gift how being so sick can change our priorities and we know that it is our family, friends, and health that really matter. Stinky also has Hep-c and experienced a lot of his friends not coming around anymore after they heard I had it.

I think it’s a defense mechanism to protect people from thinking about their own mortality as much as being afraid of catching a disease. Also I think when I told people HCV they may not have been listening good or thought HIV so I would make sure you tell them hepatitis-c and that you are better now. It also may be to you advantage to explain it well to the main gossips and let them tell the others for you, but come back with a positive attitude and a smile on you face because those negative ninnies are just drops in the sea compared to the battle you have already won.

Helping a friend

My girlfriend is involved with a slime ball boyfriend. I would prefer to never interact with him. I believe this man will further damage her already vulnerable spirit. But I also believe that it is her life to live as she chooses. I wrote her and told her what I thought of him. I know the things I said were hard for her to hear and that she was hurt. We have been friends since we were 15. I have seen her pick the same kinds of fellows over and over and I always kept my mouth shut. This time I needed to act. I never once told her what I thought she should do, but I did make my feelings known, and encouraged her to think about a few things. We are friends forever regardless of what she chooses to do.
– Concerned friend

Concerned, you did the right thing, its up to her to wake up and see what’s going on in her life and maybe now that she knows how you feel, she also knows she can depend on you to help her if she wants to get out of the situation. If she decides to stay or get out, she knows you are still there for her. Do what you can to keep communication going between you. You did the right thing being honest with your friend.
– Stinky



Found someone, to hear my cries
Listened patiently, to my surprise
A friend I found, to sympathize
To hear my words , never criticize
Who are they? do they realize?
A hero to my swollen eyes
Tears no longer streaming
painful memories, and scary dreams
No longer haunting, no more screams
I’ve found a friend, to hold my hand
Companionate, they understand
Life is short, life is sweet
Ever greatfull, our fates did meet.

–by Scott Sherwood

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