Advocate or Hardass? NABPM / NaBloPoMo Day 9

Wanted: Killjoys

There has to be a fine line between being an advocate and fighting stigma, and being a killjoy.  I still don’t think I’ve found it.  Here’s an example: a friend recently posted a link to a t-shirt on her she thought was funny, but is clearly poking fun at a mental health disorder – in this case, Tourette’s Syndrome.  The shirt had something to do with the rare symptom of Tourette’s where the sufferer uncontrollably swears (that only  happens in 8% of cases, FYI), which, on its face value, even I can see could be sort of funny.  But I know this friend is a staunch supporter of me and my family and, frankly, if I was alone in a store and saw that shirt, I might even chuckle to myself.

So what do I do?  I’ve chosen nothing – a valid if not cowardly option – because I just don’t know where to draw the line.  Or if there is a line.

What would you do?

PS – I know I’m a day behind – I’m gonna get two posts in today, I promise.

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  • ShesAllWrite November 10, 2011 at 8:53 pm

    FYI, that was posted to my timeline by a friend. I thought to repost it, because in a technical sense (or at face value, as you say) it is kind of funny, but I chose not to because it would be me advocating the use of a mental health disorder in humor. I understand me leaving it up there is kind of doing the same thing.

    I am not sure myself how far to take this. Do I tell the friend (who means well and was trying to make me laugh by posting something that we both have agreed is kind of funny)that her post is not cool? In some ways it is. Or do I leave it there and look like a hypocrite? GAH!

    One final note: I was recently in a forum discussing jokes of this nature and some sufferers of mental health disorders actually posted that they indulge in occasional humor about their disorder–because they felt sometimes they had to let themselves laugh about it.

    A very grey area indeed.

    Nice post.

  • Chrisa November 10, 2011 at 8:54 pm

    Hey – I purposely kept the details of where it was posted and who posted it vague to protect the innocent. 🙂