Laughter: Not just the best medicine, but fun, too |

Laughter: Not just the best medicine, but fun, too

How often do you laugh? I mean, seriously belly laugh. Now, how many times do you find yourself belly laughing with your teenage son or daughter, or your parents?

Hmmm … my guess is that you both have not recently exercised your power to laugh with one another as much as you should. But if you have, then – awesome! You guys have it down.

The reason why I am bringing up these few points about how important laughter is in a relationship is because a few weeks ago, someone wrote to me explaining the power that humor holds between people. After carefully reading his e-mail a couple of times, I thought how amazing it was that he could pinpoint such a fine and important part of any relationship in such a simple way.

He stated, “The tried and true solution to any form of successful communication lies in – humor. Yes, humor.

“1. Humor opens doors (although one still must use the obligatory knob).

“2. Humor can deflate even the most serious of disagreements.

“3. When used correctly, humor can be a real mental ‘lifesaver.'”

I must say that I completely agree.

Humor opens doors. Humor is a funny thing. It really can open up doors between parents and teens and invite more serious conversations and insights into a relationship. All one really has to do is be goofy. Start a conversation about something with a lame joke. Even if the joke or remark is REALLY lame, you’ll be sure to get at least a smirk out of the person you are semiharassing. This way, the person you are attempting to talk to will see that you really aren’t that difficult to be around. You may even actually be, well, fun. Laughter and lightheartedness can lead to many wonderful things, and one of those things can be a healthy and happy relationship with someone you love.

Humor can deflate even the most serious disagreements. This statement is by far my favorite. Even if you and your parent/teen are having an argument, a quick random statement thrown into the mix can easily lighten the mood. Create inside jokes that you guys can share and laugh about together, so that if and when another fight about anything from homework to curfews comes along, you have something that will be sure to trigger a happier state of mind. My favorite thing to say to my parents and friends whenever we don’t exactly see eye to eye is, “Don’t get fake pissed!” This, for some reason, draws the passion and anger out of the disagreement at once and brings a smile to the person’s face when I say it, because they know the background of that simple inside joke and they cannot help but snicker.

Just remember, it’s OK to have fun. Even though you are all grown up – or so you like to think – there is ALWAYS room to laugh, smile, and enjoy life as it is.

When used correctly, humor can be a real mental lifesaver. This line is also very intelligently written. It seems that we, as people, sometimes get ourselves caught up in the everyday buzz of things and often forget that life does not need to be taken seriously ALL the time. A lot of people seem to forget that the world will not stop spinning if they make one single mistake. After a mistake is made, there’s nothing you can do except make it better.

And what better way to make things better than to make things funny? For instance, if you accidentally shrink your mom’s favorite shirt and she appears to be a little perturbed, you could be clever and say, “Oh, I just thought you were losing so much weight, you needed a smaller shirt.” If that doesn’t get you off the hook, it will at least draw a smile, and that is sometimes all it takes to ease one’s mind.

I really do believe that everyone in the world is funny. They have to be. Otherwise they would have dried up and ceased to exist a long time ago.

Humor is magical. It can create bonds between people who otherwise would have nothing in common. So, just think about today and ask yourself if you have the time to belly laugh with your mom or dad, son or daughter in order to make your relationship a little smoother. Chances are you have plenty of time to spend, not waste, laughing with one another about the stupidest, yet most important, things ever.

Have questions about parents or teenagers? Morgan Nettles is a 17-year-old graduate of Nevada Union High School. She writes a monthly column about parent/teen relationships. Write her in care of Youth Page, The Union, 464 Sutton Way, Grass Valley, 95945, or e-mail her at

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