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Crossing the road

13 REPLIES 13

Re: Crossing the road

Hi I am a nursing sister being treated in the hospital I work in, many people have been very supportive ie hugs from porters and wishing me well, some of the nursing staff I work with have told me they were frightened to phone me as they didn,t know what to say whilst other staff I had worked with years ago lower their head when I pass to them I shout hello how are you just for the hell of it. I have bc I AM STILL ME FULL OF FUN AND DEVILEMENT. KEEP YOUR HEAD HIGH LADIES AND DON,T LET THE BUGGERS GET YOU DOWN X

Re: Crossing the road

Hi Jilly,
thanks and I hope things go well for you. Heaven help those unfriendly friends when we get back, they won't know what to say!!
Lily x

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Re: Crossing the road

Thanks Lily
You are so right. Friends cannot be mislaid, they were never there in the first place! I am in the same position with work, no-one is allowed to know what's wrong with me. I haven't got Leprosy for goodness sake. I am a nurse and ocasionally meet patients in the supermarket. I refuse to keep things from them, they think I have deserted them and I still love them and miss them. Luckily, like you I still get calls to make me feel part of the team.

Big hug to you Lily, love Jilly

Re: Crossing the road

Hey Jilly,
You haven't mislaid friends, friends are the ones that stayed with you or befriend you even though they know you have BC.One very close friend who I went out with regularly has been 'busy' since my dx, and will not even reply to a text since then. So I have given up now and she will have to make the first move. At work, one of my very close friends printed off a personal email from me to her at home and took it into our work. She handed it to our line manager so I got talked to!! I was only asking how things were in my department, out of curiosity and she has made me look very foolish. I am now only allowed to speak to one person who coordinates any conversations about work!!! I was in total disbelief and have no idea how to react when I go back in the new year. Fortunately most of my friends ignore this and email me still to keep me feeling part of the team.
People!!!
Big hug
Lily x

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Re: Crossing the road

Hi i had the crossing the road thing when my partner died suddenly 8 years back but then as now i shrugged and thought their loss.... tho unlike the bc experience i was v lonely...

i have found most people more upset than me that i have BC - it's not fair is the most common refrain - but all the way through i just say hey, pooh happens... i can't change this... being assertive means accept it and do what you have to do to get 'well'. most have got used to it and i talk about my treatment openly without TOO much detail... and someone told me the other day that me being matter of fact had helped them when her dad was diagnosed....we had a long chat and she apologised for having avoided me for a time - as others have said - she did not know what to say

i went out for a quick drink before my rads today with a friend who describes me as 'not having a bloody minded attitude as such, you just go, hey i can get through this' - and mainly i do but it hasn't been without the support of my chap, the fact my uni sons help but just do matter of fact (and the funnies!), my sis had the same type of BC the year before me and that i have met some amazing people on here - some of whom i have met in real - we laugh about all sorts of things and talk seriously too.

Cancer of any kind changes lives. While i'd really rather not have it -some wonderful things have come out of it.

i am 50 - but hey i am about 19 in my head!!!

Best of luck with chemo marita...

i hope people get over their fears and start talking to us all

TC

jen x

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Re: Crossing the road

I've not really encountered people crossing the road but am getting strangely fed up with their surprised 'your looking fantasic!' comments. I'm not sure what people expect you to look like, and lets face it if you're out and about it's a good day!

I'm 41, six weeks post op and due to start chemo in a week or two, maybe things will change then!!

Re: Crossing the road

I have had this happen to me but only by people who are not remotely important to me, ie work contacts [not colleagues] and people I know of but am not particularly friends with except for one very significant person.

She is / was a friend and I am God Mother to her daughter. We had lost contact in recent years so I'm not saying she dropped me after the DX but I saw her in Tesco one afternoon, she rounded the aisle I was in, looked straight at me with such a look of shock on her face you would think she had seen a ghost, said "Hi how are you I'm fine thanks see you later" all whilst continuing to walk and without drawing breathe and I never actually spoke, she then disappeared and I have not seen or heard from her since.

Its not that this was her first knowledge of my illnes cos I know she knew about it and I have been told that she is so upset about it she cant cope [?!?!?!?]. Now I could maybe believe this and have some understanding of it but I went to a wedding a couple of years ago and a mutual friend of ours was going through BC at that time and she was all over her like a rash.

Fortunately for me this situation has been the exception not the rule and I am very lucky that the vast majority of my family, friends and work colleagues have been very supportive through this awful time as have their friends to them which is also an enormous help. If people don't support them they can't support us when we need it.

I hope you all have other people who you can rely on and I know that with hind sight we maybe didn't use to deal with people in difficult situations very well ourselves. We are probably all guilty of that dreadful head tilting sympathetic smile thing but we none of us know the impact it has until we find ourselves on the receiving end.

AJxxx

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Re: Crossing the road

I haven't had that problem.I approach people I know, Shouldn't have to I know but once the initial ice is broken its fine,They are just frightened of saying the wrong thing or not knowing what to say,

Re: Crossing the road

I too have had the cross the road, head down experience. A friend had the same when her little girl died.

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Re: Crossing the road

I have returned to work in last 5 weeks and a colleague who I had not seen for about 4 years is coming to work with us.Last time she saw me I had dark brown shoulder length hair.I now have a short grey crop and have put on 2 stone.She was being introduced to the team and didn't recognise me so went to shake my hand.as soon as I said Hi and looked directly at her she shouted my name and asked" have you not been well" in utter shock,hugged me 3 times and got really upset .I had to calm her down and reassure that I was ok.My boss asked me later if I get a lot of that,to which I said thankfully not as over the top as that.

Re: Crossing the road

Also know what you mean....I also had people put their heads down when walking towards me.
Though when I was at the bus-stop one day whilst having chemo and wearing my scarve another lady waiting turned round and said '' cancer treatment? wheres yours?''.....turned out she'd been treated twice for BC.....but it was so refreshing to have someone be direct....or is that only other cancer paitents have the ability [not sure right word ] to be like that.
I had all the girls from work promising to come round.....did hey ..did they heck....except my best friend and one other girl from work....the others used to ask my best friend ''hows karen'' ....used to make her angry too that they couldn;t even ring or txt me even.

Mind you the ''pity smile'' by strangers in the supermarket wound me up too......then I thought to myself....gosh I bet I used to do that do!!

You certainly find out who your real friends are, also your OH and family do too!

Maybe also its because people are afraid of saying the wrong thing or don't know how to act round you......they don't realie you just want them to be normal.

Consequently I have now become quite less tolerant of people.

karen

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Re: Crossing the road

I had loads of people offering help and asking how I was when I had a hysterectomy earlier this year - but not so with breast cancer. This certainly sorts the wheat from the chaff! People might not cross the road but they garble about rubbish to avoid asking "How are you" - when I have known some of them for 20 years! It really is as if they think it is a death sentence and they are terribly embarrassed and won't even respond if I raise the issue in a gentle way. I shall make it my mission to educate them! I'm still human with feelings. However - I would probably prefer this than people being OTT. I think we all just want a bit of normality.

Re: Crossing the road

Hi JillyH

Yes I know exactly what you mean. Quite a few of my freinds on the school playground stopped talking to me, when they walked past me they look away and don't speak. A freind who I have known for 15years will not ring me she gets her husband to ring mine or gets her daughter to ring. My nextdoor neighbour only smiles if she see's me but doesnt talk she always stopped to chat. And the people who talk only talk to my hubby not to me. Very isolating.
I am used to it though, as my dad died when I was 14 and people did exactly the same. They don't know what to say or fear saying the wrong thing. I just feel like shouting at them that I'm not dead yet! The same as the people who say I'll pop round when your feeling better. Hello, I had a mastectomy to get rid of this thing and I feel physically ok ish I just need my freinds to be there for support, to laugh with and to cry with if need be.
Have'nt met anybody my age just 1 lady who is older than me but it seems that I give her the support she needs but it doesnt work the other way.
Keep your chin up and the people who don't talk are not really your true friends anyway.

Essie XX

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Crossing the road

When my mother was ill with cancer (not bc) I remember going out for a walk with her and a previous good neighbour crossing the road to avoid speaking to her. She was very hurt. I am now going through the same sort of thing, I seem to have mislaid a couple of friends. One of my husband's friends is afraid to phone in case I answer the phone. The plus side is ,I have made new friends via my treatment. I suspect some other of you lovely people have gone through this

Love Jilly