Is it denial or wisdom to accept life threatening illness?

BMJ 2001; 323 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.323.7320.1071b (Published 03 November 2001) Cite this as: BMJ 2001;323:1071
  1. Arthur Rifkin, attending psychiatrist (rifkin@lij.edu)
  1. Hillside Hospital, Glen Oaks, NY 11004, USA

    EDITOR—Like Cuddihy,1 I have a life threatening illness. What I find interesting is how I can spend most of my time not thinking about my prognosis. Is this denial or wisdom? Calling it denial makes my relative comfort into a pathological mental mechanism. Perhaps I should not complain about it. Most of us prefer ignorance about how our …

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