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How to deal with the barrage of advice


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One thing I was not prepared for was the barrage of advice we would receive about the absolute MUST DO OR YOU WILL DIE remedies, diets, supplements, oils, exercises, etc. I know people truly mean well, but it is completely overwhelming when we are trying to digest what our trusted physicians are guiding us to do. I appreciated Tom Galli's advice about the "quacks" and think of it every time a well meaning friend tells us that their uncle's cousin was cured of cancer by just doing xyz. One friend in particular, who is very big on homeopathic remedies is sending me emails daily - including a terrible website that claims to "uncover" the truth about cancer. It's upsetting, but right now all I can muster is a "thank you." Would love to hear how you as caregivers (since they seem to send this stuff right to me and not Adam) have handled this as I know it must happen to everyone. I'll also say that I'm not opposed to incorporating homeopathic treatments as a complement to our medical care, but in no way shape or form do I think these things take priority over science. 

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Yes, all those great remedies! Having had 3 cancers, I've been subjected to lots of advice, including green drinks, raw food, an electical device that would put  me in some kind of force field, and "whatever you do, don't do chemo, it'll kill you. " (obviously it didn't!) Al least I can think of the advice I was given as well-intentioned . I mostly just said "thank you". Another possibility is "I'll keep that in mind" -- and proceeding to put it WAY i the back of my mind. 

Fortunately I didn't have anybody emailing me daily with this stuff. That would be really wearing and also hard to say "thank you" to.  You could just delete the e-mails without reading them Or you could ask him to stop. If you want to maintain a tolerable relationship with this person, you could say (or email) something like "Thank you for your well-wishes. We've firmly decided on a treatment plan and it doesn't include homeopathic remedies (or force fields or whatever). We do understand that your suggestions are based on love and concern, but right now they're really distracting and I want to ask you to stop" .  You might add that "what helps us is simple expressions of love and concern without advice. " Or you might add  " We also appreciate it when people bring dinner". 

Good luck and hang in there.

Bridget O

P.S. (Maybe I should have just expressed love and concern without advice! Feel free to disregard.



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Fantastic advice, Bridget! Thanks!! Though I am curious about this force field....🤔

Aside from that one, we are getting much of the same, and like you I just try to remember that everyone wants to help, and for some, this is the best way! So far I've managed to refuse the offers of meals because cooking helps me feel normal, but I can tell that in the coming weeks, maybe just one meal a week might be really nice. We also received the same advice about chemo and stopping all prescriptions. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

I just shut it done firmly but politely. I'm an Engineer, have always spoke my mind straight up and everyone knows it.

However, my wife is not like me so she is the one who gets all the "advice".  Every once in awhile she will let something slip thru (Fish oil pills).  I just give her my look and usually laugh.

Bottom line, if you dont shut it down people will think you actually appreciate the help.



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We cancer sufferers are very prone to look for the "next great thing" that will beat the disease without any of the inconvenience of the present medically sound protocols, but that makes us vulnerable to unhealthy decisions.  Of course there are things we can do to stay healthy, (good diet, exercise, relaxation, etc.), but sometimes during treatment we just need to get through the symptoms and perhaps need to put on weight no matter what it takes.  So a shake or ice cream (my personal favorite) can be well-tolerated.  Right now I'm NED so I do things that my doctor agrees can help me to stay healthy.  I workout, eat (mostly) healthy foods and try to keep sweets to a rational quantity.  I also do things that help me out mentally, (hobbies, yoga, meditation, socializing).  So yes, there are things you can do to help your body to stay healthier longer, but drinking a small vial of "bat juice" won't be one of them.  Either will the many "treatments" that have no basis in fact or medical testing.  

You can listen to people if you like and always end the conversation with; "You might be right" so that you can get to move on.  But, don't let any of those tales seduce you into forfeiting either your time or money to "urban legend cures".  As Tom always says, "Stay the course", with the treatment plan agreed on with your medical team.

What a great question.  Thanks for asking it.


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