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To think that my manager should keep her 'advice' to herself

(62 Posts)
Beeswax2017 Thu 18-Feb-16 08:36:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

jadorecakesnbiscuits Thu 18-Feb-16 08:45:54

I've seen people reccomended marijuana to someone with terminal pancreatic cancer. If these things genuinely worked then cancer would be cured wouldn't it?

I feel for you OP and I'm sorry for your situation being dealt with so insensitively at work flowers

YoureAllABunchOfBastards Thu 18-Feb-16 08:49:38

What an insensitive cow. I would have struggled not to slap her.

echt Thu 18-Feb-16 08:52:28

It's a difficult one.

One the one hand she is spouting the most frightful -bollocks- snake oil, though there will be MNers along to say it's all fabulous stuff hmm

On the other she probably meant well in her own barking way.

On the other hand she is your boss. Keep a record of this.

Many thanks, LLVL.

firesidechat Thu 18-Feb-16 09:06:53

I had a pm from someone on here trying to "educate" me on how my husband's cancer could be cured. I was able to compose a suitable response to that load of old rubbish and felt much better.

It's very hard when someone springs this sort of stuff on you without warning. It might help to prepare something to say to her just in case she mentions it again. Even if you never have to use it it may help to imagine a perfect reply.

Berthatydfil Thu 18-Feb-16 09:12:11

Can you say that you know she's trying to help but
1)if it just was that easy to cure cancer why would drug companies be spending millions of ££ funding research and new drugs
2) doesn't she think that you and your family haven't looked for that miracle cure already and bringing this type of rubbish to your attention is insensitive at the very best.
So could she respect your privacy and not discuss your mothers condition further.

Wolpertinger Thu 18-Feb-16 09:14:37

I found that when my Dad had cancer, a lot of people we had assumed were sane normal individuals queued up to tell us this kind of bullshit.

They meant well but it was very distressing at the time.

Pidapie Thu 18-Feb-16 09:15:17

Had someone tell my mum she had to eat blueberries to cure her cancer. She did "just incase it helped". Then she died. It's so insensitive when people come out with this kind of rubbish sad Makes me really upset too.

LurkingHusband Thu 18-Feb-16 09:17:25

I've seen people reccomended marijuana to someone with terminal pancreatic cancer.

As a cure, or a palliative ?

Anniegetyourgun Thu 18-Feb-16 09:22:08

1)if it just was that easy to cure cancer why would drug companies be spending millions of ££ funding research and new drugs

Ah, I know the answer to that one. It's because the drug companies ^don't want you to know* that you don't need their expensive products. If only we all realised that organic veggies were the answer we could all live to be 150 and they would be out of business. Or something.

Chilver Thu 18-Feb-16 09:22:51

I really feel for you OP and can completely understand why you're upset. If it helps in anyway, she was just trying to be helpful although was somewhat insensitive.

I had Stage 3 Ovarian Cancer (2.5 years ago I finished treatment) and the amount of similar things people told me, or sent me, that would 'cure my cancer' was unbelievable and I also found it upsetting.

In the end I only cracked when a reflexology therapist told me that 'if I cut out sugar completely I wouldn't have cancer' so I asked her whether because I had the odd bit of sugar in my diet I had caused my own cancer then by that thinking? It shut her, and my family, up!!

I would just say to her that you've discussed dietary changes with the oncologist and they have advised 'x' (my oncologist laughed at the sugar thing and then said if that was the case al diabetics would have cancer or something along those lines)

Fiona80 Thu 18-Feb-16 09:27:34

Maybe she was only trying to help. I know that there is no miracle cure but maybe she was genuinely concerned.

I would let it pass

plurabelle Thu 18-Feb-16 09:30:28

It's completely unprofessional behaviour. If you're in a company with proper HR I'd flag it up and ask them to have a quiet word.

leliondemer Thu 18-Feb-16 09:32:31

I feel for you OP, but I would try to focus on the fact that she is (in a rather insensitive way) trying to help. People don't know what to say in these kind of situations but sometimes want to let you know you have their support.


DropYourSword Thu 18-Feb-16 09:32:46

I'm so sorry about your mum Loki. I found out on New Year's Day my mum has cancer. It is absolutely the hardest thing I have ever had to deal with. I often am quite private but found that talking has really helped me right now. Most people have been absolutely fantastic, asked after DM and just listened to me. I would secretly really dislike it if someone did what your boss did (and in fact my sister did something very similar), but at the same time I would understand that they were just trying to help, in their own clumsy way. Her diagnosis has been a real lesson in perspective for me, and I have found that things that bother other people (or previously would have bothered me) just don't seem that important anymore.

bumbleymummy Thu 18-Feb-16 09:35:11

YANBU. Seeing as all these 'cures' are so readily available via Facebook shouldn't there be no cancer left in the world by now? thanks for you and your mum. Cancer is shit.

Xmasbaby11 Thu 18-Feb-16 09:35:43

So sorry for your situation.

Some people are desperate to come up with a solution and help even when they are not asked. Your manager was clearly researching the condition and thought she had something useful to share. If it happened again I'd explain you have faith in the doctors to deal with your mother as best they can.

Your manager obviously wants to help. If she asks how she can help, why not think of something eg time off, fundraising for cancer. Sometimes people want to help but they really don't know how.

Btw I would have been upset too and thinK she was very insensitive - but not malicious.

ScarlettDarling Thu 18-Feb-16 09:37:02

She is most probably coming from a good place. She'll have read this tripe somewhere, believed it and thought she'd pass it on to you in order to help.

I completely understand how you feel. I lost my dad to cancer just before Christmas, and if people had spouted rubbish like this to me, I'd have been terribly upset too.

Have your response prepared incase she mentions it again. Polite (as she's your boss!) but blunt, something like " no, organic veg can't cure stage 4 cancer. Wish it could but it can't. Please don't mention it again, I find it really upsetting."

So sorry about your mum, it's a dreadfully hard time flowers

MagicalHamSandwich Thu 18-Feb-16 09:41:40

It's very unprofessional but she probably meant well.

I tend to give staff the 'please let me know if there's anything I can do for you' speech and then check in with them regularly when something like this happens, but it does make you feel incredibly helpless. Being a boss doesn't make you better at being an everyday human, I'm afraid, and I think this is something many of us would find hard to handle.

Can you tell her you're really grateful for her sympathy but find this kind of stuff upsetting and please don't do it?

She should never have shown you something like this - OTOH she was arguably trying to be kind.

tbtc20 Thu 18-Feb-16 09:43:09

I'm so sorry about your Mother. I lost mine to the same cancer 6 years ago so I can empathise.

I am also going through something entirely different to your situation, but have experienced friends giving me suggestions on what I should do, or asking me things which makes me think they believe I'm just not trying hard enough. I know it is very well intended, but it's hurtful and not at all helpful.

I plan to tell them "Right now I need your love and support, if I want advice or help I know I can come to you".

HPsauciness Thu 18-Feb-16 09:47:10

I can so so sympathize, one of my close relatives is ill with a 'big' condition, and people tell us all the time how to cure it, despite none of them being remotely experts on the matter.

In fact, I would go as far as to say it is the experts who have been working in the field for 30 years that are far more likely to say they don't know how to cure it and there is no ideal solution (as it is incurable!)

I have started to look a bit unhinged when someone starts texting me about positive visualization or eating clean...this seems to be deterring them a little bit.

I have a few more sensitive and attuned friends who would never dream of suggesting anything. I think suggesting marijuana for pain relief/treat symptoms is slightly different though- as it can act in a palliative sense, but as someone else said, I have read and thought about this myself anyway!

wherethefuckisthefuckingtuna Thu 18-Feb-16 09:47:32

I am so very sorry to read of your situation flowers

I have Multiple Sclerosis and one of my biggest peeves is people offering me their crank health advice.

They go away and look it up, read one article and then forward it on to me to tell me how I can be cured/it's not a real disease/it's aspartame poisoning shock

Try to ignore your boss. I think that's the best thing you can do. Or if she does bring it up again, I agree with ScarlettDarling, reply firmly but politely that you wish that veg was a cure, but sadly it isn't. And leave it at that.

And be gentle with yourself. Some people think they are being helpful, which although uninvited and unwarranted, at least means they care and are thinking of you.

Which is what I keep telling myself xx

ExConstance Thu 18-Feb-16 09:49:19

John Diamond wrote about all the suggestions of this kind he received in "Snake Oil". When my father was dying of lung cancer my mother tried some of the special diets, herbal medication etc. for him, she said she knew they wouldn't work but she needed to have some hope and that was what kept her going, so she continued with this thinking that perhaps 0% survival chance was now 5% - almost zero but just something to hang on to. I'm sure your manager meant it out of kindness and didn't understand how upsetting it would be. I think it would be cruel to raise it with HR and better to tell her face to face that your mother is only pursuing conventional palliative care.

PittedOlive Thu 18-Feb-16 09:54:23

You're not being in the least unreasonable - in fact you were incredibly restrained and professional with your manager's crackpot 'advice'. It matters not a jot that it's 'coming from a good place', it was a dopey, insensitive, unprofessional thing to say. Or is she just incredibly gullible?

I agree with other posters that I would let it drop, and if she brings it up again, tell her quite firmly that an organic diet and enemas is not a cure for stage four cancer.

And best wishes to you and your mother. I hope you have other, better support.

Wolpertinger Thu 18-Feb-16 09:56:37

John Diamond's books are brilliant.

I work in palliative care and obviously everyone choose to cope differently but it is painful to see people spend their life savings on fraudsters. Especially as mostly the treatments are miserable - eating diets you don't enjoy and blaming yourself for getting the cancer in the first place for your bad life choices - cancer loves sugar is a popular theme.

Also eating all that fruit and veg when you have stage 4 cancer can actually be a bad idea as it is lacking in protein and calories - these people end up extraordinarily underweight and in conflict with their medical teams who apparently 'don't understand nutrition'.

I'd suggest you say 'Thanks for your concern but we aren't interested in pursuing that route' now and if she raises it again go to HR.

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