Prostate Cancer Survivors






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Re: telling my 8 y/o i have cancer


Do you have to tell an eight year old that you have cancer? If so, why? I can understand that it might be necessary if you were likely to succumb to the disease soon and not see him grow up. But this seems an unlikely scenario.

Although you have not given any details of your diagnosis, the fact that your medical advisors have agreed to your surgery indicates that it is likely that you have what is termed early stage prostate cancer. If this is so, then the chances of your passing on due to prostate cancer in the next five years is statistically as cost to zero as you can get – and even at 10 years, the chance of a disease specific death is less than 5%.

And even then, the actuality of passing is not sudden. Unlike the biggest single cause of death in the US – heart failure – prostate cancer gives men who are destined to pass on from the disease many years to acclimatise their loved ones to their departure.

So, I say again, why bring in the word cancer – that is a terrifying word because it is associated with an inevitability of death, but in most case that is simply not so with prostate cancer. Tell him you have a problem with come cells in your body that aren’t behaving – perhaps even use the word tumour, which is much less threatening than cancer – tell them you are going to remove them – like the weeds in the lawn and you’ll keep an eye on things afterwards to make sure the weeds don’t come back.

If you are one of the unfortunate men for whom surgery does not provide a ‘cure’ you’ll still have plenty of time to decide how to tell your son, who will then be 10 or 20 years older

All the best

Terry in Australia