ME and CFS in popular culture
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Help us collate a list of references to ME and CFS (positive or negative) in popular culture (unknown date)
Common stereotypes[edit | edit source]
Three common but incorrect stereotypes are express across many media:
- Patients are just tired, like everyone else gets, or lazy.
- Or conversely, that patients are ambitious overachievers, burnouts
- Patients are hypochondriacs and attention seekers.
The primary misconception behind these stereotypes is that patients are not simply tired, they are severely sick & disabled.
Film[edit | edit source]
- David Puttnam (British filmmaker)
Television[edit | edit source]
- Michael Crawford (British actor)
- The Golden Girls
- Ricky Gervais mocked ME patients in his comedy act. Matthew Smith blogs at Indigo Jo Blogs about this and has a short clip of Gervais in a 3 minute Youtube video C.F.S/M.E - The Torturous Disease embedded in the article "Ricky Gervais on ME, and other bad comedy". The ME Association wrote about his "apology". His 2016 album, (performed by his character from The Office, David Brent) includes a song called "Please don't make fun of the disableds" that refers to ME urging people to be "please be kind" to the disabled, "...even the ones with ME, who feel tired... we all feel tired.... sometimes we all feel tired".
- Vicky Beeching (UK TV broadcaster)
- Martine McCutcheon (British actress)
- Armando Iannucci wrote a comedy sketch where Jesus healed people with various ailments. When faced with a person with chronic fatigue syndrome Jesus replied "yeah, well we all get tired".
- The Middle (ABC comedy), April 27, 2016
- Alex Trebek on Jeopardy, July 3, 2015
Fiction[edit | edit source]
Comics & cartoons[edit | edit source]
- Blondie comic
- Chronic fatigue syndrome anonymous
- National chronic fatigue association
- I'm too tired to eat
- My stomach would hurt but I'm too tired
- What doctors are really thinking
- You're just dog tired
Music[edit | edit source]
- Cher (singer)
- Howard Bloom (publicist and writer)
- Stevie Nicks
- Stuart Murdoch (lead singer of Belle and Sebastian), "Nobody's Empire"
- Yuppie Flu (Italian music group)
News and non-fiction[edit | edit source]
Fashion[edit | edit source]
Learn more[edit | edit source]
See also[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
- Ricky Gervais on ME, and other bad comedy - Indigo Jo Blogs
- Ricky Gervais ‘apologises’ for show’s ME wise-crack - ME Association
- David Brent: Life on the Road
- Armando Iannucci - Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
- 'I got every possible sickness': Laura Dundovic reveals how she overcame battle with chronic fatigue syndrome during her teenage years
Myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) - A disease often marked by neurological symptoms, but fatigue is sometimes a symptom as well. Some diagnostic criteria distinguish it from chronic fatigue syndrome, while other diagnostic criteria consider it to be a synonym for chronic fatigue syndrome. A defining characteristic of ME is post-exertional malaise (PEM), or post-exertional neuroimmune exhaustion (PENE), which is a notable exacerbation of symptoms brought on by small exertions. PEM can last for days or weeks. Symptoms can include cognitive impairments, muscle pain (myalgia), trouble remaining upright (orthostatic intolerance), sleep abnormalities, and gastro-intestinal impairments, among others. An estimated 25% of those suffering from ME are housebound or bedbound. The World Health Organization (WHO) classifies ME as a neurological disease.