• My male friend seems to have pulled away from me since my diagnosis. Is this common cause it sure hurts!

    Asked by momoolio on Tuesday, September 4, 2012

    My male friend seems to have pulled away from me since my diagnosis. Is this common cause it sure hurts!

    7 Answers from the Community

    7 answers
    • nobrand's Avatar

      Hey there, Momoolio :) I'm sorry to hear you're having these types of troubles. I have a few friends that have mostly disappeared since the cancer thing started. Everyone's reaction is so different, and some people get really scared. I have had some of my closest friends backpedal, while others that I was estranged to came out of the woodwork! Hang in there! Cancer changes everything... (including your speed dial)

      over 8 years ago
    • Moonflay's Avatar

      As Nobrand stated...cancer affects everyone differently. Some will need more time, some will never get beyond their fear and others will lead crusades for you. I'm sorry your friend seems to have deserted you but perhaps time will heal that rift. For now, you can count on us for some chat and empathy.


      over 8 years ago
    • carm's Avatar

      Momoolio, that is such an interesting screen name, I love it. I am an oncology/end of life nurse and so I see this all too often, and not just with men. It is the awkwardness of the situation that keeps people at bay. It is not anything that you said or did, it is what they fear they cannot do. Many people struggle with those conversations, what will I say if she talks about the the disease? What can I say? How can I allay her fears? How can I protect her? Working in this field, I can tell you that even oncologists have a hard time discussing some issues. Many husbands become distant because this disease impacts them as well, and they are so busy comforting their wives that they often neglect the anger within them. Give him some time and be honest with him. Tell him what you have sensed, and ask him if there is something that you can do to help him with any issues he has. If he has none, then let him know that you do not expect him to have all the answers. At this time, often it is a good set of ears that will become his best quality. I know it is hard to comfort someone when you are the one with the disease but often, by doing this, you will find just how strong you really are. Best of luck to you, Carm.

      over 8 years ago
    • Clyde's Avatar

      So sorry to hear you are going through this. I haven't told anyone in my circle about my diagnosis for just this reason (I did tell one family member which was a HUGE mistake). People who haven't gone through this themselves, don't understand and will jump to the most horrible conclusions out of fear. I keep it to myself as much to prevent this as to not mislead people by saying things until I know myself what is going on (Cancer is a scary word and we all jump to the worst possible scenario off the bat which is rarely the case. You say you are Stage II. Very manageable.). You don't say if this was a romantic relationship or a close friendship but it sounds like he is scared. Very scared. I would contact him, try and reassure him that your diagnosis has not changed who you are and then work to present that face to him. Don't let your cancer dominate your life, or his if possible. If you are able to keep it in perspective as a manageable disease which is inconvenient but not the end of the world, you will find it easier to keep an optimistic outlook yourself and that will help those around you to not feel threatened by something they don't understand. If you need someone to vent too, find a good shrink. Having someone objective to yell at is highly theraeputic as well as helping keep your friends and loved ones free from carrying a burden they may not want and probably are not capable of carrying.

      over 8 years ago
    • Valentinegirl's Avatar

      I'm sorry that this is happening to you. When I was diagnosed and then had surgery, I realized who my true frirends were. I am so grateful for those people who went out of their way to help me care for my daughter, brought food, or even just sent cards or emails for support. Unfortunately, I also had to face the fact that some people on whom I would have liked to rely on for support offered little or no help. It was quite hurtful at times. It's hard to know why some people pull away during what is the most difficult times of our lives. Some people may be fearful or just don't know what they should say (I've heard them be referred to as "beautiful cowards") or do, and others may be too wrapped up in their own lives to help others in need. I hope that you have other friends and family on whom you can rely for support, and I would encourage you to be open with your friend about your feelings. He may not even realize what he is doing or how it is hurting you.

      Good Luck!

      over 8 years ago
    • cdog1's Avatar

      I'm new to this but already I see this happening to me.In a strange way I kind of understand it.My true friends are with me and I get the felling that you higher power will get you what you need.Goodluck!

      over 8 years ago
    • Tania's Avatar

      Hi momoolio:
      I know this hurts but some people do not know how to deal with Cancer and it's hard. I am a breast cancer survior of 3 years. The people I thought for sure would be there for me were not and the ones I never dreamed of were. At the end I learned who was really my friend and who really did not care. Yes it hurts but you move one. I met the most amazing and loving people that I would never take back. Do not worry be happy and continue life. May be it was not ment to be.
      Hugs, Tania from Miami, Florida

      over 8 years ago

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