Can gute Besserung be said for someone who’s fighting cancer? Or is it just for illnesses that are not life-threatening such as flu?
Does an acceptable alternative to gute Besserung exist for life-threatening illnesses?
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The wish “Gute Besserung” should only be used for ills that have realistic probability of going away. Or at least become better in the foreseeable future (usually a few days or weeks).
It should not be used for chronic diseases. Otherwise it can easily sound sarcastic, such as someone jumping from a cliff and you wish them a nice flight.