Friendships Healing Power

A financial emergency. Corporate downsizing. Marital upheaval and divorce. A frightening diagnosis and impending surgery. Who hasn’t experienced life’s tough times, along with carrying the arduous baggage of anxiety, anger, and fear?

If you suffer from emotional distress, accompanied by nagging health concerns, you are probably well aware of the tension these can cause. Perhaps you have blamed the frantic pace of life for your lack of passion or enthusiasm in life. Yet when we are wrought by constant stress and turmoil, when life’s interruptions hit, they are greatly exaggerated.

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Recently when my schedule was particularly hectic, a friend sent me a greeting card advertising a hotline for stressed-out people. To reach this hotline one dialed 1-Need-to-Cope, and the following automated menu came on the line:

To hear a primal scream, press 1.

To record your own primal scream, press 2.

To play it back, press 3.

For a list of ideas on how to get revenge, press 4.

To order a stress survival kit for $500, press 5.

When I opened the card, it read “To reach a friend who’ll understand, dial my number.” Under my friend’s signature was his phone number.

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