“Side Effects to Surviving” by Bee Lavender

  “The first and fundamental principle is simple: always tell the truth. No matter how difficult, unwieldy, or frightening, it is better by far to acknowledge what is actually happening. Yes, this is hard – especially if you are talking about painful and messy procedures, serious permanent disabilities, or the possibility of death. But even the youngest children have the capacity to understand what is happening, and developing a framework will help them cope with the process. Saying “this will hurt” is always better than pretending otherwise. Saying “we don’t know what will happen” is always better than promising a miracle that might not come.”

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