Forge
Published in

Forge

The Cure for Toxic Positivity

‘Hang in there!’ can do more harm than good

Photo: Picture Alliance/Getty Images

WWhen my dad was diagnosed with colon cancer at age 52, I was flooded with emails, calls, and in-person pep talks from friends and acquaintances. Anyone who’d ever met me, it seemed, was eager to offer up a platitude. “Think positive,” they told me. “It will be okay. He’ll get through this.”

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Rebecca Renner

Rebecca Renner

Journalist and fiction writer. Bylines: the Atlantic, the Washington Post, Paris Review, Tin House, The Guardian, National Geographic, etc.