Long time friend's attitude towards me and my cancer

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Contributor

Long time friend's attitude towards me and my cancer

I would like to know what people think and what I should do about this situation.

 

My friend who I have know now for over 30 years has been very dismissive and downright rude towards me when I want to either make any comment about my lymphoma or in fact in other subject.  She also has a friend that is dying of pancreatic cancer.  Hence when I raised the subject of my

lymphoma she would just brush me off saying that my cancer is not as bad as this other womans or just change the subject.  I know it is not I cant do anything for her, but any cancer is not good.    I recently went away on holidays for a week and decided I would not being looking back on how my lymphoma was now I have been cleared of it and also made the decision not to wear a hat or wig.  My hair is obviously sort and quite grey I have this person stare at me when I saw made me quite annoyed and then have her dismiss me again was the last straw.  Now she wants to catch up with me and talk because I have ignored her for weeks I am not ready to do this.  I said to her niece I would rather move on in my life and meet more positive people.  Would do you think I should do about this situation.  

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Cancer Council Team

Re: Long time friend's attitude towards me and my cancer

Sending hugs to you @debbiev and hoping you are well today 🤗

 

Have things improved with your friend at all?

 

-Kate

Cancer Council Online Community Manager

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Contributor

Re: Long time friend's attitude towards me and my cancer

Dear Katkit

 

I have not spoken to my friend since that last endeavour with her.  

 

I feel after having cancer and the high and lows of this I really dont like confrontation with people any more and now I tend to just walk away from any upset.  This friend comes from a big family who are very supportive of each other and have always been there for each other. She admits to me she cant imagine what it is like being me being alone with no family system.  So I think when I am with her she makes me feel inferior this is why I have kept my distance, and personally feel disappointment and let down in this relationship with her.

 

I am  now going out more socially and now meet more positive people in my life that make me feel more relaxed and appeciated.  

 

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Super Contributor

Re: Long time friend's attitude towards me and my cancer

Hi debbiev,

If you're not ready to see her, then don't see her yet. Do remember though, that life is short, & if she is a friend you would like to see in the future, don't burn your bridges with her just yet. Have an honest talk with her & let her know exactly how she is making you feel, then take things from there. If she thinks you're being unreasonable, there's not much you can do, so then you can definitely cut her away.
That's just my 2 cents worth, anyway. Good luck with her.

Budgie
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New Contributor

Re: Long time friend's attitude towards me and my cancer

Hi Debbie,

 

I am so sorry to hear you have been let down by a friend at a time when you needed it the most. When my Dad was very ill with bowel cancer, I found some friends no help at all and others I didn't expect at all to be a great support!

 

The ones who were supportive were able to give something emotionally of themselves in my time of need: they had empathy and an ability to listen. They could put their own problems aside to support me.

 

The ones who weren't supportive were used to ME being the empathetic listener, and suddenly I wasn't serving a purpose for them anymore! It sounds like your old friend doesn't have the capacity to offer emotional support to anyone right now. 

 

Even though you've been friends for many years, I would encourage you to give up seeking support from this friend. I know its hard not to take it personally, but its not about you, this person simply doesn't have the ability to give emotional support to anyone. Spend time with lovely and supportive people and don't look back! The cancer journey is challenging enough without spending time with people who don't deserve us.

 

 

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Contributor

Re: Long time friend's attitude towards me and my cancer

Hi Nicola 1

 

Thanks so much for your comments, I feel that this cancer I used to have has changed my life completely and it has put things in perspective.  As my wonderful cancer doctor has said to be that any type of cancer does this to you he says to me to put myself first and keep moving forward.  I feel after your comments I cannot afford to carry anyone in my life that doesnt support me.  I must keep moving to grow and learn things in life to make me a better person and feel I have done this thru my cancer treatment.  Thank you again Nicola and i wish you the best for the future and prayers to your Dad.

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Super Contributor

Re: Long time friend's attitude towards me and my cancer

debbiev

A true friend is there for you when you really need them,if you want to express how you are going, with your cancer she should have showed some compassion ,by listening not comparing with another’s cancer, definite lack of empathy, Cancer is cancer ,you really don’t need people like that in your life, when you are seriously ill ,that’s when you find out who your real  friends are.Cancer gives you a different perspective on what’s really important in life.Being around positive people is good for all life experiences.

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Frequent Contributor

Re: Long time friend's attitude towards me and my cancer

Hi Debbiev,

 

It sounds as though your spreading your wings and getting on with life, great. Do more of that. Meet new and interesting people who you can take diversions from. Another focus other than cancer is healthy.

 

Regarding your fair weather friend, who in fact is not a truly close friend. If she were a truely close friend, she wouldn’t make you feel bad, even when you do. I agree with the posts from Budgie, Nicola 1 and KJ , your friendship with this friend isn’t dependent on how you deal with her & her feelings. A friendship is a 50/50 partnership of give and take. That DOES NOT MEAN you give & she takes.

 

I think you pretty much have this locked away anyway. Your going out, good. Your making new friends, great. You have taken a stand on your appearance excellent.

 

what is important, is getting healthy, taking a positive stand on your life and being with people who lift you up and not those who bring you down.

 

Good luck and all my best wishes.

 

Lindsay

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Contributor

Re: Long time friend's attitude towards me and my cancer

Lindsay this friend I was talking about before has called around to my place last night we spoke at the door she enquired whether I was Ok going out to get groceries as she rang the other day as well she is also concerned that I have not contacted her and wants to keep in touch. I did not give her an answer to this, anyway with this self isolation all I have wanted to do is sleep
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Frequent Contributor

Re: Long time friend's attitude towards me and my cancer

Thanks for the update Debbiev.  It’s sounds like there might be a little bit of a turn around. Your friend is making the first step to a friendship rebuild. GOOD.

 

I hope it works out well, for you. A little COVID rest, can’t be a bad thing, take advantage of that.

 

Best wishes & good luck with your friend.

 

Lindsay

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