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Have you had good friends that ignore your cancer after your diagnosis? How did you cope or make sense of it?

After my cancer diagnosis, I noticed a few friends came around to the rescue, whereas other friends, close ones, seemed overwhelmed or afraid to come by, but never verbalized this to me. Instead I was left to think they didn't care. 4 months has passed since treatment, and I've found some solice in it, but am curious to see if there are others that have had this happen, and how did you handle it?

11 Answers

  • Panda
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    All great answers. My teenage son is the one with cancer. What surprised me about the situation was who the people were who were the most supportive. It wasn't always our closest friends, but people whom we barely knew. I think people are genuinely afraid to speak to us because they either don't want to upset us or they don't want to break down in front of us. So, they end up doing nothing. When my son was first diagnsoed and in the hospital we used to have some people show up and literally just start sobbing. Often I had to end up comforting them!

    Mostly the way we have handled friends and family is to keep them all well informed. We keep a daily/weekly online Journal that we post with updates. The beauty of the Journal is that we need only give the information out once and everyone can read it. That cuts down alot on the question on everyones mind . . "How is he?" Plus, it is educational as people find out what it is like to have a family member with cancer. How we live and cope on a daily basis. The Journal page also has a guestbook so that family and friends can leave comments. For our immediate and extended family (some of whom live out of state) we have a private online Family Forum (message board) that allows us to give out detailed information.

    Some people still shy away from us, still afraid of what to say, but not as much as before. My sons friends have all accepted what has happened and they are absolutely wonderful.

    Source(s): Experience.
  • 1 decade ago

    I feel so bad for you, my best friend of 20 years had a rare kidney cancer and it was awful. Most people are afraid to talk about it becuase they don't know what to do or say, so call some of your closest friends and just tell them what you need even if it's just an ear. I can't imagine leaving my friends alone with cancer. Also contact the American or Canadian Cancer Society and get information from them, there are groups that you can join that will help you through this very scary time. All the bets to you. Good luck

  • 1 decade ago

    Yes, am an 8 year survivor and came to grips with the fact that cancer is the truth factor in finding who your true friends are. And for me, that was a good thing. I agree with the fact that some do not how to handle it for fear you or going to die, but a lot has to do with the fact that you are a reminder to them that death is real. The true friends never gave up on me as painful as it was...and I could see it in their eyes and tears. The others faded into the distance, never to be heard or seen from again. At first you are hurt, but then it strengthens you inside when you discover how many good friends you do have, after all is said and done. You then learn to seek out, in new acquaintenances, those qualities found in that circle of, kindness, humor and hope. I'd include honesty and truth, but I recall how many said, "You look really good today." ' )

  • 1 decade ago

    I had the same exact problem that you're going through when I was diagnosis as well. At first I didn't quite understand why some friends stuck around and others vanished. I always assumed it just showed me who my true friends were.

    But on the contrary it was just, some people dont' know how to react to a sensitve issue such as illness. THey're afraid to say or even do something wrong to make matters worse. Now, I try not to take it too personal. To break the ice I joke around to put them at ease and to get rid of all that awful tension in a room. Helps, :)

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  • 1 decade ago

    My what I called my BEST friend after I told her I had cancer..this was 9yrs ago I were 27yrs old. Whereas she use to call me daily after the day I told her I were sick..She never called again till 4 months later AFTER I had went thru hell. it hurt me but @ the sametime my mate of 12yrs left me with 2 kids also.. That REALLY hurt the most! Thats life I dealt with it, If you feel like crying(cry). If you MUST knoe why ask her..If you really need her tell her..If she still dnt come around You need to accept it and think of YOUR well being, stress isnt good for you now. So do what YOU feel is best for you..PRAY

  • 1 decade ago

    Yep, same thing happened to me. Instead of being hurt by it, or mad, I came to the conclusion that some people just can't deal with cancer, and that's ok. I have made such good friends through my walk with cancer, that I am happy with where I am. Good luck to you, and try not to focus on the friends that you have lost, but the ones you have gained.

  • 1 decade ago

    I have not had it happen to me personally, but a very good friend of mine went through it. We talked about it many times. We concluded that sometimes people just don't know what to say, so they say nothing. Not the best plan, but people can only do what they can do. It doesn't mean they don't care about you ... it just means they can't cope with the pain of having a friend diagnosed with cancer. It really scares them and they don't know how to deal with it.

  • cat
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    I guess it's hard for some people hear some bad news like that.

    Don't worry so much, this is not good for your health.

    I had a cancer 2 times and my own husband was acting crazy too.

  • barb
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    no, i had several friends with me the whole way through treatments. what i thought was sad was that as soon as treatments were over, they all thought everything was alright. it wasn't. a lot of people assume that just because treatments are over, life goes back to normal. it doesn't. just roll with the punches and make the best of it. hope you are getting your health back, good luck and merry christmas.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    This is a common occurrence of people not knowing what to say or do to someone with a possibly terminal illness.

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