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Do I tell my child?

I have cancer.

No, not the little crabs we always collect on the beach in Italy, my cancer is a disease. You can’t see it at the moment, it’s inside me, hidden in the tiny cells that my body is made of. My doctor found it anyway, thank God. It’s not great that I have the disease, but now that we know it’s there, I can do a lot to make it go away. 

Excerpts from “My brave pirate mom – cancer in the family:

“My mom is a brave pirate. With her crew and the experienced pirate captain, she sets off on a voyage every Thursday. Searching for the treasure island. The sea is sometimes stormy and the sea monsters are dangerous. That’s why Mama has scars “like every real pirate. “

“Pirate-style, she shaved off her hair. Instead, she now wears colorful pirate scarves around her head. But all this buccaneering is very exhausting. That’s why Mama is very tired and sleeps a lot. But the search is worth it! Because in the end the sea monsters are defeated and the treasure island is discovered. “

What is the most challenging thing about writing an article on such a powerful topic? For me, I think it is the beginning. Which words should it start with and in what direction should it go.  Once the beginning is done, a lot of things will just fall into place.


Similarly, though more far-reaching, is the question, “Should I tell my child and if “yes”, what words can I start with?”. From a trauma pedagogical perspective, the answer is

“Basically, yes”

Since the topic of cancer is so extensive, we will not be able to discuss all the points in detail here, but you will get an overview, seen through the lens of trauma education, with further literature to delve into. It also explains the importance of including children in this process and why inclusion can contribute to a piece of salvation.

Beforehand, passing on the information that mom has cancer can lead to a momentary extra burden on the children. However, this is in favor of a sustainable, long-lasting and trusting relationship. Apart from that, children know sooner or later, even without direct information, that something important is wrong in the family. Mom/dad are often away, in hospital, talking on the phone much more often and perhaps closing the doors in the process. Mom/dad

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