Social Isolation

Hey guys,
I was diagnosed with Stage III Adenocarcinoma (non-squamous carcinoma of the lungs) in October of 2015. I was in university and I'm struggling with the lifestyle changes I've had. I'm feeling really isolated from my community because cancer isn't something that people are comfortable dealing with in university, I have become 'the girl with cancer'. No one really knows how to approach me or how to talk to me. I get it, cancer is uncomfortable, so people avoid talking to me all together in order to avoid the topic. I have grown apart from my close friends because I don't want them to see me at my worst and I don't think they can understand what I am feeling and going through.
I think it's hard for them to understand that I can't do a lot of the things I used to do. I also spend a lot of time at the doctor's or recovering from treatments, so I feel like we are losing touch. On top of this, I understand that our priorities and our concerns are completely different. I find it challenging to be a supportive friend when my friends break up with a boyfriend or do poorly on a test, in my position, that isn't something to be overly concerned with. I know it is a big deal for many young adults, but I have moved past that being the definition of 'the worst thing that can happen'.
Does anyone have any ideas on how to fix my relationship with my friends or any tips on how to deal with social isolation?

Comments

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  • makhopmakhop Community Member
    First of all, girl congrats on your fight!! I don't think people, especially more around our age's really understand that. You're going through something that's going to put you way ahead of your friends maturity wise.. and that's difficult to cope with as well. BUT, here's the important thing: you've got people, even if you don't realize it all the time. I was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in April, just finishing my senior year of high school. I totally understand being "that girl with cancer". What I had to realize is that people want to help! You just have to be open to receiving it. Its true that friends come around less, and conversations spark less often.. but know it's not forever, know people love you. And keep fighting!!❤️