You are not responsible for dealing with other people’s emotions about your cancer. It can be very draining for someone suffering with cancer to ‘manage’ others reactions, either one-off or ongoing, to their cancer. Be prepared for a mixed reaction when you tell people you have cancer. People often don’t know what to see, especially if they’re unaware you’ve been ill. Allow people some latitude in their reactions, as it might take them a while to come to terms with it and adjust to their feelings.
You might find that initially, you have to be the one comforting others.
If you want to limit your communication with others, especially those outside your close friends, ask people to communicate by email, text or social networks. That way you can control things and update large groups of people at once.
People generally just want to offer messages of support and know about your progress. However saying the same thing over and over can be physically and emotionally draining so either say in advance that you’ll update only when you feel up to it, or delegate this task to a ‘coordinator’. This saves you from having to feel you have to keep people up to date.
Your cancer and treatment is also going to have a profound effect on those people around you who love and care for you. Your family and loved ones will try to support you but it will be difficult for them to see you suffer, so let them know how much you value their support, and that you realise it effects them too.