With the culture of the world adapting to the online landscape, there is no shortage of finding your people somewhere online. Regardless of how supportive your family and friends may be, having cancer can be a lonely experience. That’s why connecting with other women who have dealt with breast cancer is a great step towards recovery and even building lifelong friendships. Finding a breast cancer support group online can be just as rewarding as in-person.
Popular community forums
Does it work best for you to reach out on a breast cancer forum, or do you need video meetings? There are all kinds of support that can be found online- all you really need to find is just one group that works for you. Good support groups are well-organized, consistent, and engaging for everyone.
Here are just a few very popular sites with breast cancer forums:
- Breastcancer.org. With over 225,000 members, this site is great for finding both emotional support and practical information. You can even keep your diagnostic and treatment information updated in your profile.
- Mylifeline. This one is designed for people with all types of cancer; it’s not exclusively women with breast cancer. Although it has a smaller community of 25,000 members, it comes with perks like being able to upload photos and videos, and having mental health professionals managing the site 24/7.
- Breast Cancer Now. With well over 69,000 members, this breast cancer forum gives you access to ask their nurses questions and post on a wide variety of topics.
- Mayo Clinic Discussions. Mayo Clinic hosts a wide variety of discussion boards for breast cancer patients and many related topics, like women’s health, managing symptoms, and more.
- Cancer Survivors Network. Although not strictly for discussing breast cancer, there are over 28,000 topics in the breast cancer forum. Hosted by the American Cancer Society.
Luckily, all of these discussion forums are moderated by healthcare professionals who keep an out for patients, survivors, and caregivers alike. You can find similar groups on Reddit, for example, but those groups are not led by larger organizations that strive to give much-needed emotional resources. They also may or may not have professionals monitoring the discussions, so misinformation might spread easily.
Although typing out a discussion post for your group to see might seem impersonal, there is usually a wealth of information on these kinds of sites due to so many topics being discussed at once. Keep in mind that if one post mentions some possible misinformation on a medical issue, be sure to report it to the forum’s moderator, and speak with your own doctor and care team. These discussions shouldn’t be there to replace your own doctor’s advice and checkups!
Video call meetups
For those who like the flexibility of a breast cancer forum, but the personal touch of face-to-face meetings, joining a group that does regular calls is a great option. For breast cancer support groups online with video calls, oftentimes, you have to look within your local area. Although these are smaller communities, they can provide a more intimate place to share your feelings.
- Susan G. Komen For the Cure lists quite a few organizations and support groups that meet via Zoom and telephone. Navigate to “How to Find Local, Online and Telephone Support”
- Call a local hospital or clinic and ask about video call support meetings. Or talk to your primary care physician or another professional who can link you to a group. This ensures that you can get quality care.
- Support Groups Central lists a wide variety of video call groups that focus on many topics from cancer, to areas of mental health, and more.
Coping with symptoms and treatment is just one aspect of your cancer care. Nurturing yourself emotionally and finding community can be extraordinarily healing! It’s time to empower ourselves and other women to seek out the right support to get through tough times.