Changing the conversation about work and cancer


These are some of the conversations we typically have with individuals during coaching.

First Conversations

“My boss has asked me how long I need off work – I really don’t know so what should I say?”

“I don’t know how bad the cancer is yet, so what should I say, who should I tell and when? What’s the right thing to do?”

“I don’t understand half the things the doctors tell me, so how can I explain it all to my boss?”

“I don’t want anyone to know about this. That’s best isn’t it?”

After Treatment; Thinking About Returning to Work

“I worry about the cancer returning – I worry each time I get a new ache or pain”

“I have to wear pads as I’m coping with incontinence after surgery. I’m worried about others noticing or knowing about this. It’s so embarrassing. I can’t tell my boss”

“I don’t feel well but I can’t afford to take any more time off work or they will think I’m not up to doing the job.”

“I’m so tired – and it’s not a normal tiredness – how am I going to cope? I may need to lie down for a bit but I really don’t want to ask”

Job Changes

“The department has changed a lot while I’ve been away. I don’t know if I fit any more.”

“I have a new boss who I don’t know and who doesn’t know me – I’m worried that he may already have doubts about my capability”

“Since I’ve been away they’ve introduced a new system – I have no idea how it works”

“My job has been parcelled out to 3 different people – what do I do now, my job has disappeared? I don’t know what my job is anymore”

Friends & colleagues at work

“I don’t want to talk about my cancer but people keep asking me about it”

“How can I say I’m fine when I’m not? That’s what people want to hear so I feel I have to say it..”

“When I joined the team meeting people stopped talking and looked a bit awkward. But no-one actually asked me how I was”

“I don’t see XX these days – she even crossed the corridor to avoid speaking to me”

If you are interested in finding out more about the coaching provided by Working With Cancer®, please click here to contact us