November is lung cancer awareness month - 'we're all here to support each other'

A photograph of a woodland path with steps covered in autumn leaves

November is Lung Cancer Awareness month. When you or your loved one has lung cancer, it's important you can find the right emotional support. 

In this Community News blog, we'll be highlighting the support shared in the Community's lung cancer forum and sharing some other ways you can find help.

The Online Community's lung cancer forum is an online support group. It's open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and you can find support from people who understand. Because they've been there themselves. 

You might be looking for tips to help you get the best from your cancer nurse and healthcare team or ideas around coping with side effects and improving quality of life. You might just need to talk. Whatever support you're looking for, the lung cancer forum is here for you. 

“We are all here to support each other as it can be difficult to talk to the family because you don't want to upset them. At least you can put your feelings down in words and there's always someone who has been there and will let you how they dealt with it, you never know it might help.” GrumpyNana, lung cancer forum

As Community member ‘GrumpyNana’ says, the members of the group are all here to support one another. Sometimes there may be things you don't want to talk to your nearest and dearest about. The Community is an anonymous place where you can share your feelings and talk about what you're going through. 

When Community member 'Little she' came to the forum for some moral support, members rallied round to offer support.

"Hi am feeling a bit down today due 2nd chemo and immunotherapy  on 1st Dec but have felt awful for the last two weeks not sure if I want to go ahead..." - Little she, lung cancer forum

Members of the lung cancer forum were on hand to offer lots of virtual hugs and to share their experience to help 'Little she' feel less alone.

"...read your post and my heart went out to you and I send you a big hug...We all get days like you’ve described, but please don’t give up..." - marie1964, lung cancer forum

"Bless its hard struggle I'm same I'm 51 terminal lung cancer which has spread incurable but it's just a new adjustment to a new journey ...everyone's journey different I'm looking forward to going get a Xmas tree comfortable warm lights on lovely, hope you feel more better soon xxxxx" - Toniblade, lung cancer forum

"Don't give up. 4 years ago I was told I had 3 to 6 months I had stage 4 lung I have done immunotherapy for 18 months now last week a pet scan reported no active cancer in my body. This has came as a shock I have had every side effect there was and will be on a box of meds for the rest of my life and I no longer have a proprietary gland this makes all hormones in body. 

But all I can say is I now have a life ahead of me so all worth it.

Immunotherapy has alllowed me to, not only meet my granddaughter born 6 months ago, but maybe see her grow to have her own children one day. Find the thing to live for and keep fighting for it x Best of luck" - Gill321, lung cancer forum

"Hi. I am new here and just wanted to say how much I find the replies all positive. I do not have this cancer myself but a close member of my family suffers, she is upbeat and having good care thankfully. Wishing you all the best and stay safe."   - JanDeb, lung cancer forum

Like Community member 'JanDeb', not everyone in the lung cancer group has cancer themselves. Some members come to the group when they're supporting a loved one with lung cancer. 

New member MJ88 shared their feelings when their mum was sadly diagnosed with lung cancer which had spread to the spine.

"My mum is only 63 and she is my absolute best friend. I speak to her everyday and can't imagine my life without her. I can't stop thinking about everything we are going to miss out on together and I am beyond devastated." - MJ88, lung cancer forum

Again lots of members were on hand to offer support, including this lovely message from Dorris16

"I feel your fear and stress - its heartbreaking but you will cope and I hope you have great support.  I promise you some days are good ahead ..I was like you 5 month again nothing online showed any hope ..you find hope daily, it tests you. But you will be OK. Sending lots of love to your mum and all of you." - Dorris16, lung cancer forum

Community Champion chellesimo also had some sage advice to offer.

"I am sorry to hear about your mums diagnoses. It is heart breaking when a loved one receives a cancer diagnoses. My cancer is secondary. It started in my womb, and then came back 5 years later in my lungs. I was told I was incurable, but treatable, and 6 years later I am still stable. You can read my journey by clicking on my profile picture which will take you to my profile.

It is great to hear your mum can have immunotherapy. There are a few people who have had immunotherapy in the group, and have finished their treatment and are still stable. Not everyone is suitable for immunotherapy, so it is good that your mum can have it. 

It is so easy to google everything these days, but  the internet is very outdated. Please remember that lung cancer treatments have come such a long way in recent years, especially with immunotherapy being used alongside chemotherapy. 

I hope your mums treatment goes well for her. Take care x"- chellesimo, lung cancer forum

If you're supporting a loved one with lung cancer, you can also find support from our family and friends forum in the Community. We also have a dedicated space for carers only, a safe and supportive space for caregivers to share their worries and emotions.

Anyone affected by lung cancer can also search for local support groups through our ‘In Your Area’ pages on the Macmillan website here. Type in your location and then you can narrow down your search with the filters and keyword search. If you need further help finding the right support, please do reach out to our Support Line. Our Support Line teams are available 7 days a week, 8am-8pm on freephone 0808 808 00 00email or live webchat.

Looking for further information from Macmillan about lung cancer?

You can find our online information and support pages about lung cancer here.

Our booklet ‘Understanding Lung Cancer’ is available for download or order here.

You can also find further support from charities specialising in lung cancer support in the links below.

Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation

British Lung Foundation

We hope you've found this blog helpful in outlining the support available to people affected by lung cancer from the Online Community, in addition to linking you to other useful resources from Macmillan and other organisations.

We'd welcome your comments and feedback in the comments section below, or you can contact the Community team privately by email at community@macmillan.org.uk

We'd also love to hear from you if there's a subject you'd like to see in a future Community News Blog. 

Anonymous
  • The Macmillan Online Community helps me so much deal with my feelings especially when I know that I cannot “talk “ because I would cry too much. It’s an outlet for me to share my thoughts and worries and to read that others are going through such similar thoughts and concerns. I never feel completely alone as I know I can reach out on this community.

    Grasan

  • Hi ,

    Thank you for your comment, it means a lot to hear how the Community has helped you. Please do keep reaching out for support. We're all here to help you through the difficult times.

    • Hi, not sure where to start, my husband has lung cancer. He had covid and suffered with his chest went for an xray in October and results were not what we expected large tumor, things moved quickly, pet scan showed cancer in lining and nodes in lung, 3 different biopsies because other 2 came back inconclusive, he had CT biopsy today all to find primary so more waiting before any treatment plan can be made, I'm trying to be strong but it so hard, I'm angry, upset, full of emotions right now, the waiting is torture. Just dont know what to expect, we feel like we are in limbo with no support. 
  • Hi Nikki42,

    Thank you for posting on our Community news blog, it’s Megan here from Macmillan’s Online Community team. I’m sorry to hear that you and your husband have had covid-19 and of your husband’s lung cancer diagnosis. It sounds like you both have had a lot to cope with recently so I’m glad you’re reaching out for some support. It's natural to feel lots of different emotions when waiting for test results especially when further tests are needed.  I hope posting here on the Community is helping you to feel that you’re not alone in feeling this way.

    From looking at your profile I noticed that you’re already a member of the Lung cancer forum and have posted here before and someone has come by to offer some support. If you have not yet seen their reply you can click here to read it and respond back by clicking the reply box under the post.

    When being there to support a loved one it’s important that you have some support for yourself, so I’d like to make you aware of some other groups on the Community that you may find helpful to join.

    Here on the Community, there’s a Carers only group and the Family and friends forum should you need some to speak to others who also have loved ones with cancer. Our Community groups are safe and supportive places for you to chat with others, ask questions and give support back. If you wanted to start another discussion in these groups, I’m sure others will be close by to offer some support.

    If you’d find it helpful to talk you’re always welcome to call the Macmillan Support Line on 0808 808 00 00 which is open 7 days a week from 8 am-8 pm. Here there are specialist teams of Nurses, Support advisers, and the Money and Work teams on hand to provide emotional, financial, and practical support. You can also use the webchat service and email during the opening hours should you wish.

    I hope that the above information is helpful for you to find the information and support you are looking for. If you need any help navigating and using the site, please don’t hesitate to let us know as the Community team is here to help all our members access the support they are looking for. You’re always welcome to email community@macmillan.org.uk or send a private message to the Moderator account


    Best wishes,

    Megan
    Macmillan’s Online Community Team