You Have Cancer, Don’t Be An Asshole About It

Being diagnosed with cancer is for sure a bummer, but it comes with one solid perk: the cancer card. Now there is a lot of debate in the cancer community about how you should use it. I for one, believe it should only be used in extreme circumstances or to get things that benefit you and ease the burden of cancer such as getting legal weed or a handicapped sticker for your car. I believe these should be fair game because they don’t affect anyone but yourself. I feel the trouble starts to arise when you begin using the card to achieve a superior status to others. Let me explain.

When you have cancer, most of the other troubles in life become inconsequential. Being broke, having a stupid disagreement with the lady (or gent), having a dick boss. Those things that would once have been the biggest issues in your life are now seemingly meaningless and petty cause now your big problem in life is that you might die soon. Sounds harsh, but it’s true. Who gives a shit if your girlfriend ate the last slice of pizza when you’re now facing the very real possibility of your own mortality. So how does this relate to the cancer card? Simply, it makes it difficult to listen to people whine and bitch about shit that would have been a problem to you were you a healthy person, but is now stupid and meaningless so you pull the cancer card and go “stop fighting about this shit, I have cancer, that’s way worse.” And in reality you’re right, cancer probably is worse than 99% of the problems healthy people have, but that doesn’t take away their right to view them as problems. And it certainly doesn’t give you the right to make them feel bad about having concerns that aren’t as severe as cancer.

I think this is a classic trap that most of us cancer-havers will fall into. It can be extremely frustrating when you’re in and out of the hospital weekly and your buddy is over there whining about how his boss is a mouth-breather. But you have to remember something: cancer gives you the power to be selfish all the time. Try not to be. You can complain about the issues of having cancer every day and people will probably have nothing to say because they can’t relate and sometimes that does feel good. It feels like validation that what you’re going through really is the worst and you are right to feel like people should treat you as such. But remember that even though the problems of others may seem stupid now to you, they don’t to them. And no one likes that guy who always has to have it the worst. It’s important to try and still identify with the problems of healthy folk because that’s what being a friend is. It’s helping your buddy when they feel down, not trying to make them feel bad for feeling the way they feel. In fact, having cancer gives you the power to be even more emotionally comforting cause people can think “even Mitch thinks my issues are for real, and that’s coming from the kid with terminal cancer!” And this isn’t to say that I think everyone but me has stupid problems. I actually enjoy listening to my friends talk about the issues of their lives because it’s nice to talk about something other than cancer and to be reminded of what it’s like to live a normal life. It brings me back to a simpler time when I was worried about chasing tail at college bars and not CT scan results that could determine whether I live to see 30 or die next week.

I guess what I’m saying is that it’s important not to become the story-topping “cancer guy.” Having cancer is serious, but so is everyone else’s problems. They’re important to them, at least. I’m just saying listen to others, don’t go around talking about how big your cock is because you have cancer. And I’ve been through chemo too, I know that giant cock of yours is probably shooting blanks now so don’t act so tough there Nicky No Sperm.

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