Talking about your body changes
People often feel they have to appear to cope well and put on a brave face. They might worry that they can’t let people know how they really feel about the changes to their body as they may appear ungrateful.
This can mean that the real impact of the changes, such as anger, anxiety and sadness isn’t talked about.
It’s the core of who I am. It's the fact that it always look as if I’m coping and I’m on top of things. I’m awfully good at that but underneath…
Sometimes people think more about other people’s needs than their own and this can also stop them from talking about their own experiences.
We usually keep our thoughts and feelings about our bodies private and we don’t discuss them openly with other people. You may feel too embarrassed and awkward to say how you really feel. But keeping your feelings to yourself can stop you doing things you enjoy or getting the right help.
It can help to talk about your feelings with someone you feel comfortable with and can trust. One way to start a conversation may be to write down your questions or concerns and show them to your healthcare professional. It can also help to write down their answers, as it can be difficult to remember everything discussed.
You may find it useful to speak to someone who has had a similar experience to you. Many areas offer ‘buddy systems’ or have support groups. Or you may prefer to share your experiences, ask questions and get support from others through the internet.
Visit Healthtalkonline or Macmillan’s own community at to talk about your experiences with other people.
We have more information about talking about your cancer that might be helpful.