• The things people say...

    Asked by LiveWithCancer on Tuesday, February 23, 2016

    The things people say...

    We have had this discussion multiple times, but I just got off of the phone with the lady I do agility classes and trials with and who I often walk with. We spend quite a bit of time together. She's the one who told me one time that it's a good thing I don't have a serious kind of cancer like our other friend who had a little skin cancer that had to be scraped away!

    Today, we were talking about an agility friend who passed away last week from cancer. Our club held a raffle.in her honor and donated all proceeds to her charity of choice. We were talking about all of the nice, nice things that were being said about Theresa. .. but then mentioned that it isn't uncommon for people to sing the praises of those we lose. That's when my friend says, "I don't know what I'll say about you when you die from your cancer!"

    Hmmmm. I think she realized a few seconds later how THAT comment sounded and tried to.make it better ... which usually just makes it worse!!

    24 Answers from the Community

    24 answers
    • Sue_2015's Avatar
      Sue_2015

      Oh...my...god...how awful :(

      Was there more to that conversation? Or did you both just have an astonished look, mouth agape, staring, unbelieving, into each others eyes at what a horrible thing that was to say?
      I think I would have said, "WHAT? WTF? WTH do you mean by that?" among other things.

      Sending a big hug.

      over 3 years ago
    • BuckeyeShelby's Avatar
      BuckeyeShelby

      How does she know she won't get hit by a truck before you die of anything? People! Open mouth, insert foot. I'm sorry you had to endure what I hope was just a thoughtless gaffe.

      over 3 years ago
    • Sue_2015's Avatar
      Sue_2015

      @LiveWithCancer ...I just re-read your post and realize you had this conversation on the phone.....not in person. Did you hang up on her, or did she try to correct herself? Like Shelby says, it's that terrible foot-in-mouth-syndrome that so many people have. Sigh.

      over 3 years ago
    • cam32505's Avatar
      cam32505

      I think some of us just don't have filters on our mouths. Many times we think things, but some of us have mouths that work faster than our brains. Hopefully, you didn't take her too seriously. Only another cancer patient/survivor/caretaker would even begin to understand what we go through and how some cancers are better to have than others. Even the doctors do that one, so I guess we're just human.

      over 3 years ago
    • dollymama's Avatar
      dollymama

      Having skin cancer, I constantly hear, "oh, well, at least you don't have one of the Bad cancers". People don't realize that skin cancer patients die every day from skin cancer.

      over 3 years ago
    • geekling's Avatar
      geekling

      Huck Finn had all the advantages.

      He got to go to his own funeral to hear what oeople might say about him.

      You might tell your friend to give it some thought so that you can 'correct' her attitude prior to moving on.

      over 3 years ago
    • Carool's Avatar
      Carool

      Agast! Does she know something you don't know? Sheesh!

      over 3 years ago
    • Lynne-I-Am's Avatar
      Lynne-I-Am

      Yep! I diagnose a case of foot in mouth disease.

      over 3 years ago
    • LiveWithCancer's Avatar
      LiveWithCancer

      I actually didn't say anything to her. We moved on to other topics. She definitely does NOT have a filter!! I am accustomed, to a point, to her!!! I had a CT scan some time back that showed some growth of a tumor. I was telling her about it. Her response was to tell me about something she saw on TV. I don't think she was even listening to me ... she was thinking about what she had seen on TV the night before. I just shake my head, grimace, and move on!

      @dollymama, I wasn't trying to make light of skin cancer, but the skin cancer our friend had was very superficial and definitely NOT a life-threatening condition. It was a small place on her leg that was scraped off in the doctor's office.

      over 3 years ago
    • CAS1's Avatar
      CAS1

      I just don't get people and how crass and rude they can be..I have a short fuse for most of it.
      She lacks empathy. .that's what she is missing..pitty her because she is missing out on so much depth in life.

      over 3 years ago
    • Ejourneys' Avatar
      Ejourneys

      o_O

      over 3 years ago
    • bevaschia's Avatar
      bevaschia

      Oh my...How terrible! Sometimes I think people don't know what to say, get uncomfortable thinking they should say something, then don't think and then just blurt the first thing that comes to mind. I'm very sorry you witnessed that. :-(

      over 3 years ago
    • LiveWithCancer's Avatar
      LiveWithCancer

      Today is a day for gaffes by my friends! I just told a girl I used to hang with a lot before cancer that a mutual acquaintance has stage IV cancer. She was so sad. "That's terminal, isn't it?" I wrote back, "well, not necessarily immediately, since I am stage IV, too." I think she was really embarrassed!

      over 3 years ago
    • bevaschia's Avatar
      bevaschia

      Goodness!!!

      over 3 years ago
    • cllinda's Avatar
      cllinda

      That was uncalled for and just plain mean. People speak before they use their brains, especially to cancer patients.

      I wish people would just remember that if you can't say anything nice, then don't say anything at all.

      over 3 years ago
    • meyati's Avatar
      meyati

      Livewithcancer, I'm laughing. You should give her a list of what to say at your funeral, since she doesn't know what to say, but tell her that she might die in her sleep before the sun rises tomorrow. Maybe better, you can say-- I know what I'll say at your funeral!! make her think about that.

      I am not surprised. It's when you get drivel like that from medical staff that you need to worry. I do not think that you can cure stupid, and this person has an acute case of stupid and 'foot in the mouth' disease.

      over 3 years ago
    • LiveWithCancer's Avatar
      LiveWithCancer

      @meyati, your response is right ... laughing. She has a tendency to say the wrong thing, obviously. That one left me a bit taken aback. I think even she realized after she said it that it was inappropriate. She didn’t mean it to be hateful or hurtful. She just said what popped into her mind...

      I don't care a whit about having a funeral or memorial service. What thought came to my mind during all of the wonderful things being said about the girl who recently passed was whether people let her know how they felt while she was alive!! I never heard anyone mention her until she was in her last week of life and THEN everyone was singing her praises and praying for her... Too little too late, in my opinion.

      over 3 years ago
    • BarbarainBham's Avatar
      BarbarainBham

      LivewithCancer, I get that your friend has no filter and sometimes that's awful, but I think I read between the lines that you think she has other great qualities that make up for that most of the time---such as her lack of malice and sweet spirit. It's nice to have a companion like that because you don't have to go home and wonder if a remark they made had a hidden meaning, etc.

      Since no friend is perfect, you're fortunate to have a friend like her that you know didn't mean to be hateful or hurtful. Best wishes.

      over 3 years ago
    • LiveWithCancer's Avatar
      LiveWithCancer

      @BarbarainBham, you are right that she's got lots of good qualities and she's a good person.

      I am certain she overlooks things in me just like I do with her. I have to believe that if I really needed her, she'd be there for me. That's what is most important.

      over 3 years ago
    • meyati's Avatar
      meyati

      LivewithCancer--So true. They say that an Irish woman appreciates her husband's good qualities after he dies.

      over 3 years ago
    • 751036540's Avatar
      751036540

      Skin cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer XXX it's all cancer and if asked "which would you take" I think the answer wod be the same for all NONE THANK YOU! As for your friend I think she is just insensitive to what's really happening and as for me I would have to ask her to please stop inserting (at this point) both her feet in her mouth. At any rate god bless you and we're here for you.

      over 3 years ago
    • AnnyKay's Avatar
      AnnyKay

      Live with Cancer, that is a really weird thing for someone to say. I sometimes get those kinds of things said to me too. I think because we have done so well on Opdivo and have strong faith and personalities (most of the time anyway) that people may not realize how sick we really are. Most of the time I am doing well but I certainly have my down days also, just do not tell the people I am around every day, tell you guys of my concerns because you understand. Hugs and Bravo Opdivo, , we have been blessed with the availability of this drugs success.

      over 3 years ago
    • RIVERDALE's Avatar
      RIVERDALE

      I guess it is hard for people to believe you are terminal ...I know I am and when I meet people I know I ask them not to talk about me...I want to hear their news....my news gets worse each time I see people and all it does is make me cry to think I will not see my friends and relatives again

      over 3 years ago
    • LiveWithCancer's Avatar
      LiveWithCancer

      @RIVERDALE, I am so sorry to read that your news gets worse. I do get, to a point, what you're saying about not seeing your friends and family again. I am currently responding so well to my treatments that I no longer have those feelings, but I surely did when first diagnosed. I savored every activity because I believed it could be the last time I ever got to do it. Hugs!!! I hope you are prematurely saying goodbye to your loved ones and that you see and enjoy them many, many more times.

      over 3 years ago

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