CURE Community Vlogs: Laughter As Therapy

July 25, 2020

“Laughter is the best medicine” is a principle that CURE Voices contributor Khevin Barnes takes, well, seriously. In this edition of CURE Community Vlogs, Khevin takes a minute to discuss how laughter can help men with breast cancer find a new outlook on their diagnosis.

“Laughter is the best medicine” is a principle that CURE Voices contributor Khevin Barnes takes, well, seriously. In this edition of CURE Community Vlogs, Khevin takes a minute to discuss how laughter can help men with breast cancer find a new outlook on their diagnosis.

Transcription:

There's nothing funny about cancer. But as a man with breast cancer, the very notion that a male can contract (what is considered) a woman's disease, to me, seems like a good example of the absurd and unpredictable nature of humans. Comedy, it's been shown, relies on the elements of surprise and incongruity to be funny.

So, the very notion that men have breasts is already a motivation for a pretty good punchline. And having said that, the bigger question remains, can possibly be anything funny about a life-threatening illness? Well, in a word, no. Those of us who find the benefits of laughter and humor in our quest for health and healing, are certainly not laughing at our disease.

Instead, we're finding the absurdity of life itself to be as humorous as it is. You know, as a cancer survivor, I know that it's not always easy to laugh when you feel lousy. But it's not being happy or joyful that causes us to laugh; rather, it's the laughter that creates a sense of joy and well-being. So, a bit humor, even when it hurts, is not such a bad idea.

The medical research is irrefutable, and the results are clear. Laughter reduces cortisol, the stress hormone. It's been shown to lower blood pressure, increase serotonin, ease anxiety and improve our mood. You know, it ties us all together in a sort of primal healing song that's as mysterious as it is unserious. Maybe it really is the best medicine.


x