Youth Cancer

Talking is Tough

Cancer is a tough topic to talk about (no kidding!). Not everyone talks openly and honestly about things that are happening or how they are feeling.

Even if you are used to talking openly about stuff, this may be a whole different story. There are so many things that can get in the way:

  • Your fear
  • Everyone else’s fear
  • Your treatment (it may affect your moods and behaviour)

There may be things that you want to know but you're not sure how to ask.

Things to think about:

  • There is no right or wrong way to do it.
  • Let people know that you want to know what is going on, and you want to talk about it.
  • It can be be difficult to talk if there is a big gap between what you want to talk about and what everyone else wants to talk about.


Talking tips:

  • Think about what you want to ask/ say before you start.
  • Be aware that it may be hard at first with lots of silent moments.
  • Try not to freak out if someone gets upset – it’s not an easy topic to discuss.
  • Don’t worry about getting it right the first time. It might take several tries to ask the questions or share the stuff that you want to.
  • Do something else at the same time, like cleaning up in the kitchen.
  • It may be easier to talk to someone outside the family. Think about people who you trust and feel comfortable with.


If talking is too hard

Sometimes talking is too hard but you still want your parents, siblings, other family members or friends to know how you are feeling. You can also:

  • Write a letter
  • Find cards that say it for you
  • Send an SMS
  • Facebook
  • Find songs that say it for you
  • Leave signs on your bedroom door