My Mom Was Diagnosed with Breast Cancer: A Teen’s Perspective

“Your mom has breast cancer.” It’s never easy to hear that sentence, especially for young kids. Jordan Vespoli reflects on hearing those words at age 9, how he supported his family and  now, at age 16, helps other kids who learn their mom has a breast cancer diagnosis.

Jordan and his mom_blog

On October 30, 2008, my mom and dad sat me down on my bed to give me some news. I couldn’t imagine what they were going to say to me, but I knew it was serious.  My mom had breast cancer. Cancer? What is that? I was pretty smart for a 9-year-old kid. I knew it had something to do with bad cells in your body and I knew that it was life threatening. I sat and listened.  When they asked me if I had any question, I said nothing. I did not know what to say.

So when they left my room, I sat there motionless and deep in thought.  I went through my days as I usually did, which was going to school, playing basketball and doing my homework. Inside, I felt scared and angry. I did not know anyone whose mom had ever had breast cancer.

After some time, I decided that the best way to deal with this situation was to help my family out in any way I could. I helped set up a schedule for our friends to prepare dinner for us while my mom was going through chemo. I also started speaking to my friends about it, but none of them went through the same thing I was going through.

Helping my mom and talking about it really helped me. In a way, I felt I had more control over this uncontrollable situation.

My advice to a kid whose mom is going through breast cancer is to talk about your fears and concerns with someone you trust. It helps a lot, more than you would think.

Unfortunately, it seems that every year, someone else my family knows is diagnosed with breast cancer. I will always remember the fear I felt. For this reason, I make it my priority to contact the children and let them know that I am here for them.  I want them to feel more comfortable knowing that I know how they feel, and that they will get through it.

Experiences, both good and bad, can make an impact on your life. Sometimes, how we handle these situations really bring out the type of person we are. My mom is doing great and I am so proud of her and my family for how we handled our bad experience and continue to help others with theirs.

8 thoughts on “My Mom Was Diagnosed with Breast Cancer: A Teen’s Perspective

  1. I’m sorry to hear your Mum had breast cancer, but it’s great to hear how you’re using that experience to help others. My Mum’s been diagnosed with terminal cancer and I’m now trying to use my blogs to do a similar thing… all the best. Naomi x

  2. I was over 50 when mom had it and it scared me but the worse was outpatient surgery and I was shown how to take care of her and she had visiting nurses once or twice a week to make sure we were doing it properly, it bought us closer together if that was possible but she has been thru worse and both have survived and now on oxygen and high blood pressure they can’t get under control but she could survive gain green I am only saying I question the dr’s sometimes and hug them the next. wouldn’t trade the experience for anything to keep my mom here as long as possible. Love her to the moon and back.

  3. Wow – what a mature and thoughtful young man you are. I’m so impressed. I’m also very moved by what you’ve written, because I have three children, including an 8 year-old son, who have had to adapt to my Breast Cancer diagnosis this year.

  4. I just saw this response so I apologize for getting back to you so late. Don’t worry about your son. You will be surprised how strong he will be for you. If he needs to talk or write to me, I am always available. I hope you are doing well.


  5. I am an 18 year old girl. My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer 6 months ago. It was quite a shock, since non of us expected it. I remember how angry and hopeless I felt. At first I did not want to talk about it at all. She lost both her breasts. For us, that was the easy part. But when the chemo came, life got difficult. I even had a phase where I wanted to be with my friends more than staying at home, looking after my mother. We had a few scares during her chemo. A few weeks ago she was also in danger of having a heartattack. Then the next phase started, which is the one I am currently in. After the heartattack scare, I changed completely. I do not want to be with a lot of peolpe anymore and it is as if I find it difficult to be with my friends. I cannot talk to them since they would not understand. I don’t want to talk to my parents since they already have enough stress as it is. She recently got her last chemo. I am so scared that the cancer may come back. My mother is still very positive and I admire her! Thanks for sharing your story!!

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