I was recently diagnosed with cancer and the outpouring of advice from friends and strangers has been overwhelming. I’ll be honest – at first, it was a little bit daunting. But after a while, I started to see the funny side of it all. And so, I thought I would share some of the best (and worst) advice that I have received thus far.
Stranger: “You’re so young, you should be taking advantage of your youth. You need to find a man and get married!” (This was from the woman who did my waxing. I didn’t even tell her about the cancer – she just said it.) My reply: I don’t need a man. I can get my own waxing done by myself – thank you very much!
Stranger: “Drink more water, it will flush out all of the toxins in your body.” (I was at the checkout counter in a grocery store when she said this.) My reply: Umm, no thanks. I think I’ll stick to the toxins.
Friend: “You should try this new herbal remedy that my cousin swears by. She says it cured her cancer!” My reply: Thanks, but no thanks. I think I’ll pass on the herbs for now.
Acquaintance: “I read an article that said cancer is caused by a lack of Vitamin D. You should start taking supplements right away!” (This was from the woman who does my nails.) My reply: I’ll pass on the vitamins, thanks.
While some of the advice has been helpful, much of it has been unsolicited and/or not so helpful. I am still learning to navigate this world of cancer advice, but one thing that I have learned is that there are many people out there who think they know what’s best for you – even when they don’t.
And just because someone gives you advice doesn’t mean you have to follow it.
You are the only one who knows what is best for your body and mind. If someone offers you advice, listen to them but don’t feel like you have to take it. You can always say “no thank you!” if something doesn’t feel right to you.
The best advice that I have received so far is to stay positive and to take things one day at a time. Cancer is a difficult journey, but with the right attitude, anything is possible. So please don’t be afraid to reach out for help – there are many people who are willing and able to support you on your journey.
And finally, don’t forget to laugh – it really is the best medicine! 🙂