job interview

I had been unemployed for three months when diagnosed at the end of Jan.


finished rads 3 weeks ago. I intended to wait until I started hormone therapy before I started looking for work.


I felt so much better last week I looked at job adverts. There was an advert for a local company for the job I used to do. Very rare to see one advertised so I sent my CV, thinking, a week or so before interview, then a month to start.


they emailed me next day. I was interviewed on Tuesday. Interview time 10.15, back outside by 10.30. Things might have changed when I told them what I had been doing for the last four months. 


I like to be very honest about everything but how much do I have to tell people at interviews.  Any suggestions on a good approach would be appreciated. 



Hi Leeks


You are not obliged to disclose your medical history at the point of interview and I believe they are not allowed to ask. The reason you became unemployed is not connected to your dx so you can be open about that. It would only be when you are offered a job that you have to fill in a medical and if it were me I would not tell them at interview.


It is a bad reflection on the company that they dismissed you because of it and perhaps it is an indication of the type of employer they are, ie one that you would not want to work for.


I am sorry that you have had that experience. My advice would be to look at the public sector as  they are often more equitable.



Hi Keeks, i was only saying to my sister earlier on today about when i start job seeking again. One of the things i said that is of a disadvantage to those of us that have gone through cancer treatment is that part where you have to explain about your missing work history from when you last worked - interrupted then by a long period of time when you are having ops, chemo, rads, etc and then recovering enough to the point of feeling up to looking for work - until the first interview when you tell a stranger to their face that you have been having cancer treatment. I wonder what goes through their mind at that moment apart from the obvious things such as  : Will they be up to the demands of the job? Or will they need lots of time off for appointments? And how much sick time will they be taking? I would hate to think that they would feel sorry for us at any point and make us feel any worse about the situation than we already do!! So when the time is right and i feel up to the challenge of doing the rounds of application forms/cv’s/interviews/rejections, etc then i will pull my sox up and go for it!  Cheers, Michele x







Hi ladies.


There was no one from HR at my interview so the questions I was asked were very work focused. But not the questions I am usually asked at interviews. I don’t really know if my bombshell changed anything. I was proud of myself for being able to bring it up and not get the least bit upset. The people interviewing me did not comment in any way. 


but now I am overthinking things. I am not well enough to start working just now but I really need to get back to ‘normal’ and feel stronger each day.   Part of me wants to recieve news I was unsuccessful so I can at least tell myself I tried.


Thanks for the comments.



Thanks Kess for your kind words.


this is not the first time my body has tried to kill me so I think I can deal with things ok but I find I am too positive and maybe not realistic  enough. 



Hi Keeks


I took ill health retirement from the NHS three years ago due to seconaries,After a while I missed work!!! I applied for a reception job last year and was very surprised to get it, the only health related question was how many periods of sickness in my last job and I was able to answer one, I did not elaberate that it had been six months as that had been counted a one period by the NHS. I take the view that I have not lied to the company. I just omitted to mention my cancer.  Some days it is difficult however I only work 12.30-16.30 mon-thurs so I can plan my rest around that. Obviously I have to watch what I say as they have no idea, I am lucky that my Onc is aware of the situation and I am able to have scans/apps around my work hours. I think it is very much a personal decision on whether to tell or not .

Several applications have gone in recently.
1 sent, offered interview but it clashed with op!
2sent with comment about dx on form, references taken up but not called for interview
3 sent, no comment on form, but i mentioned it at interview as 2 people on panel knew of cancer but not type etc
4 now not going to say anything!

I have good days and bad days at the moment and on the good days I feel like going out looking for work, then “BAM” here come the side effects and a couple of bad days that floor me!!

All I really want is a part-time job with no stress (HA!) nice people and enough money to keep me going as I am now.

The last time I had a job interview was 10 years ago for the job that I had to give up for the cancer treatment last year. At first it was like a weight lifted off me not having to worry anymore about keeping in touch with work to let them know how things were going and seeing the Company Nurse, not to mention constant trips to the GP for another fit note to cover myself.

After awhile the novelty soon wears off and the boredom and loneliness of not being around your colleagues and customers becomes a reality. A little shop job local would be nice - I keep looking to see if my little Co-op has anything going, I have got to know the staff (my friend works there) really well and I would love to work with them, maybe there would be some seasonal work coming up at Christmas that could be permanent.

What on earth would we have to put down on a CV or application form regarding the gap between jobs that was taken up with having cancer treatment?

And what reaction would we expect at interviews? I know that there are laws in place regarding discrimination in the workplace, but you still come across single individuals who still treat you with disdain regardless. Yikes!

Cheers, Michele x

Honesty is always best policy and look forward to seeing comments as I will too have to think about going back to work. But I finished chemo in july and radio in september and am completely pooped so not thinking about it yet. Don’t rush back … your body and mind needs time to heal x