I recently completed some research that considered how families talk about genetic conditions. this work continues my interest in pursuing questions that we all ask when communicating about health. "Am I normal?" "What are my risk factors?" "Why don't I get care?" "Who profits from my health?" "What's politics got to do with it?" and "Is the 'public good' -- good for me?" The research appeared in a news story at ScienceDaily-- http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120312114119.htm and also the online magazine--WhyFiles-- http://whyfiles.org/2012/know-thy-genes-know-thyself/ It also got picked up and discussed at http://www.breakingchristiannews.com/articles/display_art.html?ID=9926 Check it out!
As the daughter of a career military father, Ihe grew up without worries about access to health care but still learned the same lessons we all seem to learn about what we do and don't talk about when it comes to health. And over time, I realized that talking rather than not talking could literally be the difference between life and death. But I also grew up, married, had children of her own, and realized that there are many competing priorities in our lives. If we only knew what to talk about when we talk about health, what might really make a difference in our own well-being and that of our family and friends, then perhaps talking might be more of a priority. I began to organize a set of suggestions to guide talk about health and to emphasize why it is important. As I says in the preface of her book, "Talking about health: Why communication matters," "No one ever says when lying on their death bed, 'I sure wish I'd worked harder. I needed to put in more hours at the office. I could've spent weekends working and met more deadlines, finished more on my "to-do" list, and gotten more rewards for working hard.' But people often do say, 'I wish I'd paid more attention to my health, so I could have more time with my family and see more places I always wanted to see.' Or, as my husband's grandmother confided to me, 'I wish I'd eaten more ice cream and less beans.' ...There are better versus worse ways to talk about health" and it is my life's mission to promote the former while helping us to avoid the latter.