Manner Monday®: The Cancer Conversation – What to Say.

As seen on:
by Carey Sue Vega in Etiquette, Manner Monday, Manners

With October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month; I’ve asked Janet McLain, Co-founder and Guide of Cancierge to share some helpful tips with us about getting The Cancer Conversation started. Over the next three weeks, Janet is going to share tips on ‘what to say’, ‘advice to those with a loved one or friend touched by cancer’, and ‘actions that help a cancer patient on their journey’. To learn more about Janet and Dr. Laura Miles, please visit

Here’s Janet…

First and foremost, people do not intend to hurt or negatively impact someone diagnosed with cancer. They simply do not know what to say, how to say it, or when not to say anything. The following are the top ten most insensitive comments I have witnessed. I am including them to make a point. We need to take the time the THINK first, speak second.

  1. Are you going to lose your hair?
  2. Your hair wasn’t that great anyway.  Look at all the options.
  3. At least they caught it early…
  4. Do you think your hormone therapy or middle age weight gain have anything to do with it?
  5. Are you sure you want to do that treatment?
  6. That is terrible news!
  7. Just let me know what you need.
  8. What stage are you?
  9. The look of pity…I call them head tilters.
  10. Saying nothing at all…avoidance.

I know you look at these comments with disbelief. They occur very frequently. Some of you may be looking at some of these comments and wonder “What’s wrong with that?” Some may be thinking, “I don’t want to say the wrong thing. I will just avoid this situation.” Next week, I’ll share advice to those of you who have a friend or loved one touched by cancer.

Thank you Janet for your words of wisdom! I know they will be helpful to those of us who find ourselves wondering what to say and I look forward to learning more about how we can help our loved ones and friends.

Do you know someone who would benefit from this post?  If so, please share it with them and encourage them to sign up to receive Manner Monday?  I would appreciate it!  And if you’re new to Manner Monday, I’d love for you to take a minute to learn more about why I started it. You can click here to read my very first post that tells all about it.

Do you have a ‘manner’ or question you would like to see covered in a post?  Feel free to send me your thoughts, I would love to hear from you.

Click to Tweet: Don’t let this happen, “I don’t want to say the wrong thing, so I will just avoid the situation.” #MannerMonday

As always;  Thanks for reading!
– Carey Sue



Do you know of a high schooler who would benefit from improved social skills, confidence (the right kind of confidence) and better manners?  We have a few options for them:

The Interview Intensive begins later in October and is for students who are in 10-12th grades.  We work on Business Etiquette skills, building resumes, and preparing students for the stressful interview process that is fast approaching.  Whether it be for a scholarship, college, or a job; we help to prepare the students so that when they’re placed in a high-stakes interview, they will have real life experience to draw from, feeling more confident during the process.  Link for more info:

As an adult, if you would like to help us during the mock interviews, please let me know, we would love to have you serve as a roll model for these students.  Your services would be needed on Thursday, November 19, from 6:30-8:30pm.  You will get to meet some amazing young people that will give you encouragement for our future!

Passport Program: 
I am still working on the schedule for the Passport Program.  As soon as I get the theater outing secured, that will allow me to plan the rest of the schedule.  In the meantime, if you know your teen will be participating, early registration is available with a $50 savings off tuition:

Word of Mouth is the best compliment you can give us.  Do you know of some who may be interested in our programs, please share our information with them.  Here is the best link to share with them, it covers everything in a nutshell:

Copyright 2022