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(Slate)   "My longest and best friend never revealed the fact that she had cancer and I'm right to be upset, correct?"   (slate.com) divider line
    More: Awkward, Thing, Interpersonal relationship, Aerosmith, 2007 singles, Thought, WANT, long time, long-term relationships  
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357 clicks; posted to Discussion » on 13 Jun 2021 at 6:20 AM (6 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



39 Comments     (+0 »)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest
 
2021-06-13 1:48:12 AM  
Feel how you want to... you don't own your friends, and no one else owns your feelings. Empathy doesn't seem like your 'go to' route so, maybe, you do you.
 
2021-06-13 3:09:19 AM  
This isn't about you you narcissistic dumbass.
 
2021-06-13 3:11:28 AM  
JFC is letterwriter my ex wife? You are being grey-rocked deal with it
 
2021-06-13 6:40:37 AM  
New Prudie seems to write better fake letters than  the last one.
 
2021-06-13 6:42:01 AM  
what have I become
my longest friend
 
2021-06-13 6:47:15 AM  
I read TFA (I know, sorry, won't happen again particularly these agony aunt discussions) and the writer of the letter signed off with the psuedonym "Need to Get Over Myself" so at least they're half way to understanding they're being a dumbarse right off the bat.

But yeah, the friend with cancer just needed this relationship to "be normal" so didn't mention the cancer, I think that's completely understandable and actually a bit of a compliment in a weird way. But also possibly an insult, maybe the letter-writer is an overreacting lunatic and it was just best not mentioned. Either way, it's all calming down now and there doesn't appear even to be any need for butt stuff in this case (sorry Farkers).
 
2021-06-13 7:11:38 AM  
You should feel upset, sad and all manner of shiat. But not for yourself, because fark you.
 
2021-06-13 7:22:25 AM  
Been here, I (and pretty much everyone else) didn't know anything until the funeral. You always wonder why they chose that path, but the ONLY thing you can do is go on.
 
2021-06-13 7:23:35 AM  
Sunday night farking on a long weekend...
 
2021-06-13 7:23:40 AM  
I believe the letter or at least that what it describes is plausible. I have a friend with severe depression (not me, but we group together), and another friend once got really mad at her because she was going through a depressive episode and didn't call him to cry on his shoulder. I don't know if it's some weird savior complex that these people have and they truly think they're the only ones who can help, but as said above, it's not about them.
 
2021-06-13 7:27:06 AM  
She may be your best friend but your not hers. Accept that and move on.
 
2021-06-13 7:35:33 AM  
when my BIL John was dying of cancer he mentioned it to a co-worker. the news made the guy a total wreck. aside from wife & children John told no one else. he learned that is some powerful mojo to lay on someone and didn't want to freak anyone else out.
 
2021-06-13 7:42:13 AM  
Before telling anyone:

"Hey Bill, you old shiatkicker! We're gonna go out and get farked up! You in?"

After telling everyone:

(sad face pout) "Hey Bill, how ya doin'? You OK? Let us know if you need anything." (goes and gets farked up with Bill's other friends while Bill is left at home)

/seen it happen a few times
//being over-empathic to the point of isolation
///cancer sucks, and some well-wishers do as well
 
2021-06-13 7:50:30 AM  
When my adult kids have medical issues, they tell me, and not their mom (my ex.)  They specifically ask that the ex not be alerted.

The ex, who wasn't around for their childhood, will attempt to swoop in and take over the medical care with her WebMD knowledge, make it all about herself and her prior illnesses, and make up stories about what an awesome caring mother she was when the kids were growing up.  (She deserted them back then.)  She just causes them headaches, chaos and generally pisses them off.

Any text among the chosen support team, includes DO NOT CONTACT MOM.
 
2021-06-13 7:53:19 AM  
Some people can handle that stuff, some people can't.

The last thing someone wants when they are working on a list is a thousand people apologizing for what's going to happen regardless.

Just have fun, live life while you can, and let people do what they do sometimes.
 
2021-06-13 7:56:32 AM  

Ker_Thwap: When my adult kids have medical issues, they tell me, and not their mom (my ex.)  They specifically ask that the ex not be alerted.

The ex, who wasn't around for their childhood, will attempt to swoop in and take over the medical care with her WebMD knowledge, make it all about herself and her prior illnesses, and make up stories about what an awesome caring mother she was when the kids were growing up.  (She deserted them back then.)  She just causes them headaches, chaos and generally pisses them off.

Any text among the chosen support team, includes DO NOT CONTACT MOM.


I've got a relative like that.
 
2021-06-13 8:06:13 AM  
I can absolutely understand being upset not to be told. You're gonna feel how you're gonna feel, that isn't always rational. Heck, it's *frequently* not rational.

So work through that. But don't put it on the other person and add to what is obviously a very stressful and emotional situation for them.
 
2021-06-13 8:12:34 AM  

Aussie_As: I read TFA (I know, sorry, won't happen again particularly these agony aunt discussions) and the writer of the letter signed off with the psuedonym "Need to Get Over Myself" so at least they're half way to understanding they're being a dumbarse right off the bat.

But yeah, the friend with cancer just needed this relationship to "be normal" so didn't mention the cancer, I think that's completely understandable and actually a bit of a compliment in a weird way. But also possibly an insult, maybe the letter-writer is an overreacting lunatic and it was just best not mentioned. Either way, it's all calming down now and there doesn't appear even to be any need for butt stuff in this case (sorry Farkers).


There is ALWAYS the need.

You must be new here.  Welcome.  Maybe read a few posts to get  a general feeling of the place before writing something like that.
 
2021-06-13 8:16:07 AM  

Kegovitch: There is ALWAYS the need.

You must be new here.  Welcome.  Maybe read a few posts to get  a general feeling of the place before writing something like that.


Yeah on reflection I've been here long enough to get that, it's only going to be butt stuff from now on.
 
2021-06-13 9:44:21 AM  
A friend of over 50 years announced on Facebook that he had cancer. The same kind, I was shocked to realize, that I'd had. (It was an odd skin cancer which doctors found and quickly removed.) I'd forgotten about it. I've had 3-4 other surgeries that I didn't tell friends about. Why would I? None of them made for a funny story, and basically my conversation is either persiflage or politics. (I keep vowing to change, but that doesn't seem to work.)
 
2021-06-13 9:53:06 AM  
Another view:

Good friends with a couple, she's dying of brain cancer and absolutely has told no one and told her hubby not to either. Well, he and I are close, and he's gotta have somebody to talk to. Which is Point 1: the cancer patient may be the victim but it's not just about them. Sorry, other people are also suffering greatly.

There are lots of other people who matter and care deeply. Friends, relatives, coworkers, neighbors, clergy. And people naturally want to help and be of assistance.

At this point, she has lost a lot of weight from chemo, etc. People see that and are conerned. They know something is wrong and they worry. Point 2: You cannot hide something like that. Her reasoning is she doesn't want the attention and she doesn't want people to worry. They are worrying. They can see you.

Note, this is way before anyone is going to be upset about "not being told." She'll be around a few years yet. Maybe. But if you've been close to someone for 50 years and they push you away at a critical point, yeah, people get upset, selfish or not. Two tragedies at once: the person dies and they burn friendships on the way out, leaving behind confused and grieving friends. And relatives.

Nobody should die alone yet my friend is practically demanding it. Her husband (and me) are the only people that know. I am there for him at least.
 
2021-06-13 9:56:17 AM  

yakmans_dad: I've had 3-4 other surgeries that I didn't tell friends about. Why would I?


I'm the same.  My family knows about my surgeries because I got some funny stories out of the ambulance ride and the ER examinations.  My wife... well, she noticed the flashing lights coming through the window and heard the front door open.

yakmans_dad: Why would I?


Some people aren't content to 'just deal with it' and need to commiserate or receive support from friends and family so they're less miserable or frightened than they otherwise would be.
 
2021-06-13 9:59:53 AM  
Precisely how tall is she?
 
2021-06-13 11:10:12 AM  
no.
 
2021-06-13 11:17:14 AM  
Or you can be upset because you lost or are losing your friend, but you can't be upset at HER. It's none of your business, really. You can't go.

Ker_Thwap: When my adult kids have medical issues, they tell me, and not their mom (my ex.)  They specifically ask that the ex not be alerted.
The ex, who wasn't around for their childhood, will attempt to swoop in and take over the medical care with her WebMD knowledge, make it all about herself and her prior illnesses, and make up stories about what an awesome caring mother she was when the kids were growing up.  (She deserted them back then.)  She just causes them headaches, chaos and generally pisses them off.
Any text among the chosen support team, includes DO NOT CONTACT MOM.


That's my ex, but that's another issue altogether.
 
2021-06-13 11:46:59 AM  
Talking with a friend from work at the office about his cancer, he'd been off work for surgery and chemo and radiation and he'd lost a hundred pounds. They hadn't been able to stop it and he was terminal.  He was very emaciated, after a life of being portly. Some ditzy office lady comes up barging into our conversation to say: " haven't seen you in AGES! You look so different, what kind of diet did you go on to look so good?"

We just looked at each other. He was very kind and didn't just say to her that he was still in the process of dying and had a few weeks left before hospice.

I think someone else probably clued her in later.
 
2021-06-13 12:23:23 PM  

Any Pie Left: Talking with a friend from work at the office about his cancer, he'd been off work for surgery and chemo and radiation and he'd lost a hundred pounds. They hadn't been able to stop it and he was terminal.  He was very emaciated, after a life of being portly. Some ditzy office lady comes up barging into our conversation to say: " haven't seen you in AGES! You look so different, what kind of diet did you go on to look so good?"

We just looked at each other. He was very kind and didn't just say to her that he was still in the process of dying and had a few weeks left before hospice.

I think someone else probably clued her in later.


When AIDS swept into this country in the 1980s, we learned to stop asking about other people's weight losses. Because that was often the answer.

Some people have never gotten that memo. Some people need to be reminded that commenting on other people's appearances is rude and unwarranted, no matter the occasion.

HR will happily remind you, however, when you are reported.
 
2021-06-13 12:46:44 PM  

Cafe Threads: Some people need to be reminded that commenting on other people's appearances is rude and unwarranted, no matter the occasion.

HR will happily remind you, however, when you are reported.


The other day, one woman in my office complimented another on her apparent weight loss.  I kept my head down behind my farking monitor and my mouth shut.  That is a minefield with a near-zero chance of crossing without a 'boom!' if you're a penis-owner.
 
2021-06-13 1:28:19 PM  
Your longest and best friend? Well that sure explains why he's your best friend.
 
2021-06-13 1:32:41 PM  
1)  Make It Last Forever, Friendship Never Ends: It's not right or wrong to feel the way you feel, however it's your friends news.  So STFU and GTHOI.

2)  This Time, I'm Telling You, I'm Telling You!  We Are Never Ever, Ever Getting Back Together:
Fark user imageView Full Size

STFU and MYOB.

3) Shot Through The Heart And You're To Blame: Cut her, bench her, trade her to the Colorado Rockies, they'll over pay.  It's not really a tenable situation, honestly and I'd try to GTFO.
 
2021-06-13 1:45:59 PM  
I'm upset because other people don't act in the way I want.
 
2021-06-13 1:48:26 PM  

physt: I'm upset because other people don't act in the way I want.


That is a universal truth, though.  The real issue is in the specific details.
 
2021-06-13 2:03:28 PM  
Yes, that is a legitimately awful betrayal. Friendship is about experiencing life together. The really big life-altering events, like experincing cancer, are fundamental parts of being a friend, and friendships change shape with them. keeping it a secret is plainly a rejection of somebody, as a person who cannot be a friend.
 
2021-06-13 2:07:48 PM  

Sunidesus: So work through that. But don't put it on the other person and add to what is obviously a very stressful and emotional situation for them.


I agree that there is no way to continue as their friend, although being their at-distance acquaintance wiull continue. There will be no opportunity to address the damage done, since the ex-friend has so much to deal with. o it is a matter of simply accepting it and being appropriately despondent over the loss.

But to say that emotional situations are something for friends to keep secret is to reject the entire premise of friendship wholesale.

I notice this thread is full of people who are talking about social media connections, and talking about office peers, which are 2 social ituations that are not friendships. The etiquettes for them do not apply, nor do the values involved.
 
2021-06-13 5:21:18 PM  

Cafe Threads: Any Pie Left: Talking with a friend from work at the office about his cancer, he'd been off work for surgery and chemo and radiation and he'd lost a hundred pounds. They hadn't been able to stop it and he was terminal.  He was very emaciated, after a life of being portly. Some ditzy office lady comes up barging into our conversation to say: " haven't seen you in AGES! You look so different, what kind of diet did you go on to look so good?"

We just looked at each other. He was very kind and didn't just say to her that he was still in the process of dying and had a few weeks left before hospice.

I think someone else probably clued her in later.

When AIDS swept into this country in the 1980s, we learned to stop asking about other people's weight losses. Because that was often the answer.

Some people have never gotten that memo. Some people need to be reminded that commenting on other people's appearances is rude and unwarranted, no matter the occasion.

HR will happily remind you, however, when you are reported.


Craig Sampson. He came in to visit the office in his last days from AIDS. He was well loved and deservedly so. I was a newbie and he barely knew me but took time out to say, "I'm hearing good things about you" Wow. Tragic that he didn't make it because  good guy like that deserved to live a long and happy life.
 
2021-06-13 5:50:40 PM  

Bennie Crabtree: keeping it a secret is plainly a rejection of somebody, as a person who cannot be a friend.


Some people don't want to be remembered as they looked when they were dying.  I knew a man who, when he no longer looked good enough to meet his own standards, said goodbye to his family and friends then had the hospital ban all visitors.  Including his own wife.

I can't say he was wrong to do so - the emotional pain of that might have been less than seeing him wracked with pain as he died of bone cancer.  Bone cancer's one of the exceptionally nasty ones.
 
2021-06-13 7:53:55 PM  

kjg6464: New Prudie seems to write better fake letters than  the last one.


Spentmiles has returned?
 
2021-06-13 9:39:07 PM  
My mom-in-law was one of the "barn cat" types that didn't want people seeing her in a bad way, preferring they remember her healthy and well-dressed and everything.  She wouldn't le me come see her in her last 2 weeks because I'd seen her all dressed up and made up nice for a last doctor or bank appointment before she started hospice, and she said she didn't have the strength or courage to have me see her in that bad state she was in, that we'd already said what was needed and that she loved me and approved of me, so I had to honor her last wishes.

I felt hurt by that but have made peace with it.

My best friend from college and best man at my wedding was in the closet the whole time, afraid telling me would damage our friendship.  His last call to me from the coast was telling me he was sick with a "flu" but he wanted me to drop what I was doing, out of work as I was, and travel across the country to "hang out" with him.  I said under the circumstances I couldn't swing the expense, had to conserve my money while job hunting.   He had AIDS but again was afraid to tell me, I would have gone to see him, but he chickened out. I didn't find out until a wake held after the funeral, which at the time was a no-gathering, cremation thing. Dammit, that still stings.
 
2021-06-13 10:49:29 PM  

Any Pie Left: My mom-in-law was one of the "barn cat" types that didn't want people seeing her in a bad way, preferring they remember her healthy and well-dressed and everything.  She wouldn't le me come see her in her last 2 weeks because I'd seen her all dressed up and made up nice for a last doctor or bank appointment before she started hospice, and she said she didn't have the strength or courage to have me see her in that bad state she was in, that we'd already said what was needed and that she loved me and approved of me, so I had to honor her last wishes.

I felt hurt by that but have made peace with it.

My best friend from college and best man at my wedding was in the closet the whole time, afraid telling me would damage our friendship.  His last call to me from the coast was telling me he was sick with a "flu" but he wanted me to drop what I was doing, out of work as I was, and travel across the country to "hang out" with him.  I said under the circumstances I couldn't swing the expense, had to conserve my money while job hunting.   He had AIDS but again was afraid to tell me, I would have gone to see him, but he chickened out. I didn't find out until a wake held after the funeral, which at the time was a no-gathering, cremation thing. Dammit, that still stings.


That hits me like the end of Last Rung on the Ladder
 
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