Our online Discussion Forum gets a makeover

Our Forum has been given a fresh new look to make it easier to join, easier to post, and easier to find what you’re looking for. Read Sue's story about how the Forum supported her through her husband's diagnosis.

27 May 2021

When Sue’s husband, Mick, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, she came to the Forum for information.

Sue: ‘I researched online and Pancreatic Cancer UK came up, so I went on there. I started reading posts on the Forum – it wasn’t particularly that I was looking for anybody else in the same situation…(but) I found it good to see how other people were coping. It was ‘nice’, in inverted commas, to meet other people going through the same kind of cancer…because I didn’t know of pancreatic cancer – I barely knew what the pancreas did at that time. It wasn’t something you ever saw much about, so it was really good to meet other people.’

‘You could write something and there would always be somebody there that would understand, where you couldn’t maybe text a friend, because they would be sympathetic but they really wouldn’t know what it’s like.’

The feeling of isolation that can come with a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer is something our nurses hear a lot on the Support Line, and we know this has been heightened during the pandemic. Face-to-face hospital appointments have been cancelled. It’s been harder to see loved ones. People have been given difficult news over the phone, alone. The ability to connect with people who understand what you’re going through has perhaps never been more important, the existence of a supportive online community never more valuable.

We asked Sue what she would say to somebody who is dealing with a pancreatic cancer diagnosis at the moment, who might be thinking ‘should I join the Forum?’.

Sue: ‘Definitely! I started off, like many others, just reading until I was brave enough to put something on there. I think that’s quite normal, to read first (until) you feel safe to post. But undoubtedly, it was often a place I could talk when I couldn’t talk to my husband about it. Because you’re that busy being strong for them that the thoughts that are going through your head…you don’t always want to share them. It was a safe place to share thoughts and emotions. I would say definitely, undoubtedly, reach out, because there is always someone going through the same thing, and there is always hope.’

You can find the new-look Forum at forum.pancreaticcancer.org.uk.