Cancer Etiquette: Tips on Talking To a Cancer Patient

Talking to someone with cancer can be challenging unless you have also been there. People say inappropriate things even without noticing. So how can you meet the communication needs of a cancer patient? Here are a few tips to help.

Do Not Ignore Them

Some people simply vanish when someone they know gets cancer. This is the worst thing you can do. This person already feels lonely, and the last thing they need is a friend disappearing from them. Simple things like saying ‘I’m here for you’ or ‘I love you’ go a long way. Sometimes just being present and telling them you do not know what to say is enough.

Think of Your Words Carefully

Your words can have a significant impact on a person. Avoid cancer cliches like ‘hero’ or ‘inspiring.’ Because when a person gets worse, that might imply they have not fought enough. Try and put yourself in those shoes and imagine what you would want someone to say to you.

Do not Be Intrusive

Unless this is someone very close to you, avoid being intrusive. If they are ready to talk about their latest progress, they will. Let them have the freedom to offer that information. In addition, do not start offering unsolicited advice. Maybe you have heard of this brilliant oncologist Newport beach, and you start telling them about it. First, follow their lead and gauge if they want your advice, then give it.

Make The Conversation About Them and Not You

Do not lose focus when talking to them, and start mentioning your headache or back pain. This is about your friend. And as much as you are feeling bad, they feel worse and are not interested in your headache. If you have to steer the conversation, talk about general things that can get them off their worries.

The best you can do is show the person dealing with cancer that you care about. You do not have to avoid a friend coping with cancer because you cannot help. However, holding their hand during a difficult period is enough.

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