Lets talk about cancer

The emotional language surrounding cancer can affect people in different ways.  That’s why the recent YouGov poll, commissioned by Macmillan Cancer Support, has started people talking openly about words used to talk about cancer. The Poll has sparked an important conversation. Read on to find out more.

The YouGov Poll findings

The poll surveyed 2,000 people who have had or have cancer. The findings highlighted insensitive and divisive language, these included terms such as “cancer-stricken” and “victim”. When describing what people with cancer are going through terms such as “war”, “battle”, “journey” were also seen as negative.

Media articles and posts on social media were found to be the worst offenders for using such language.

Talking to someone with cancer

Cancer Support Scotland provides support to those affected by cancer. We strongly believe that when speaking about someone’s diagnosis that the person comes first rather than the illness.

Cancer Support Scotland hear from people who use our services that Cancer replaces them as individuals in the eye of the public. This is why the Charity welcomes the findings from the YouGov poll. Working closely with people affected by cancer we see first-hand the added pressure negative language places people under.

Our Charity is keen to help people have a better understanding of what a close friend or family member is going through following a cancer diagnosis. Helping them to recognise that whilst someone may have cancer they are still someone with ambitions, worry’s and plans for the future.

From our Headquarters in the Calman Centre and our outreach centres we ensure that people who are affected with cancer are given the space to be themselves, catch up with friends and family whilst accessing a wide range of complementary therapies and counselling.

Watch our service users video  and hear in their own words how with support they were able to talk about cancer with family and friends.


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