I have a need to vent ...
This habit that we all have of saying hello and then automatically following it with "How are you?" should cease. It's not a greeting. It's a question. Questions usually solicit answers, don't they? (that was a question) "Why yes, they do." (this is an answer)
People know I have fibro. And because I haven't yet seen the rheumatologist, (it takes a month and a half to get a "new patient" appointment) it's pretty easy to tell when I'm having a bad day with it. I move more slowly; I may grimace from time to time; I may close my office door and put my head down for a few minutes at lunch. It's not rocket science. Pretty much all you have to do is look at me to tell. So when you say "How are you?" I'm gonna tell you the truth. Today sucks ... I'm sore ... whatever. I've been told I'm honest to a fault. Should I not be? Should I lie? Say I'm fine when I'm not? Well, I don't. That's not me. And I don't think I'm the only one who feels this way. I've known people with chronic illness or chronic pain conditions who've voiced the same frustrations.
Even deeper than the surface annoyance of this, is the insincerity and downright falsity it illustrates and perpetuates. How many times have we asked someone how they are, and then thought "Oh shit. Now she's gonna tell me." Why do this if we really don't want to know? Do we want someone to think we care, but inside we really don't? That's just wrong.
If you don't wanna know, don't ask.