Using Humor to Cope

We turned to humor to help us cope with our sister’s end-stage cancer and also in our grief. If we weren’t emailing each other funny and sarcastic stories of the terribleness of the outside “real world,” we were watching funny shows and movies, finding hilarious video clips, or reading comedians’ books. We aren’t advocating denial or avoidance of reality, but it felt good to laugh and to distract ourselves from our sadness at times. Plus, they say that laughter is the best medicine. Humor has been linked to improving health and overall well-being. So, let’s put the tissues aside and find ways to laugh today.

You may have noticed that there are several comedy related listings on our Resources page. With inspiration from this page, here are our top 5 distractions:

Jimmy and Emma Stone square off in a lip sync battle and Emma shows she's not afraid of lightning fast lyrics. 

  1. Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. He does so many great things, but we love the lip sync battles, Thank You Notes, everything he does involving The Roots, and the extensive and detailed TV parodies.
  2. There were several TV shows that we enjoyed watching during our difficult time, but some of our favorites were The Mindy Project, New Girl, Inside Amy Schumer, and Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee. Did you see the (Comedians in Cars) one with Sarah Jessica Parker? Love her!
  3. Yes, Please. We clearly love all things that Amy Poehler does, so of course we needed to read her book and she did not disappoint.
  4. Magazines - People, Us Weekly, In Style, Galmour, Allure, Vanity Fair, Real Simple, Martha Stewart Living, O - if it was about celebrity gossip, fashion, food, or home decor, we would buy ‘em (most likely in an airport on our way to visit our sister), read it, and then pass it off to whoever hadn’t seen that issue yet.
  5. If you don’t know about the “Screaming Goats” videos, you need to check it out. It will make you laugh-cry. There are various versions and we have a video on our Resources Page, but we also love the compilation of songs with the goats. It’s hard to argue that Miley Cyrus doesn’t deserve a screaming goat in her video.

We want to hear from you!

Tell us about some of your crucial resources for humor at times when you really needed it. If you are a caregiver or grieving a loss, what helps you to unwind and take your mind off of your caregiving or your grief?