The Cancer Cred Scale

How serious is your cancer, really? The Cancer Cred scale (trademark pending) can help you find out! Cancer cred isn’t just about your cancer stage or type or grade: it’s about how much cancer fucks up your life. Take this easy quiz to find out how much cancer cred you have.

  • How serious is your cancer diagnosis?
    • 1: getting a suspicious mole removed, then finding out you had cancerous cells (basal cell carcinoma). But you’ve already taken it out, so you don’t have to do anything else. Keep an eye out for more abnormal moles and wear sunscreen.
    • 10: finding out I have stage IV brain cancer. Or any stage pancreatic cancer. Or mesothelioma. Fuck mesothelioma.
    • I’m a 4. Stage III breast cancer Her2 neg, estrogen pos. Super curable, but chance of recurrence at maybe 15%. Ish (this is not an exact science).
  • How much does this cancer affect your life expectancy?
    • 1: none. I’ll probably live as long as I was going to anyway.
    • 10: 20+ years off your life.
    • I’m a 1.
  • How bad is your treatment?
    • 1: getting a small procedure like moh’s surgery.
    • 10: getting surgery and chemo and radiation (multiple times is bonus points). And a port. And…. experimental stem cell bone marrow transplants. And I hurt all the time. And the treatment plan keeps changing.
    • I’d say I’m a 7 or 8. Unilateral mastectomy, full auxillary node dissection, chemo, radiation, another surgery for implant exchange, maybe another surgery to make me match.
  • How long does your total active treatment last?
    • 1: under one month.
    • 10: years (or the rest of your life! HAHAHAHHAHAH…. ~sob~)
    • I’m a 3 or 4 so far. One month fertility, 4 months chemo, 1.25 months of radiation, 1.5 months mastectomy recovery, another week or so recovery from the implant exchange.
  • How are you doing financially?
    • 1: I have amazing insurance that covers almost everything and short term disability and FMLA and a super understanding job and people keep feeding me and giving me money.
    • 10: no insurance, lose my job or can’t work, no friends or family with money to spare.
    • I’m a 1.
  • How is your support system?
    • 1: I have 10 brothers and sisters and know a bunch of doctors and my job rallies around me like I am their beloved mascot.
    • 10: everyone abandons me or I don’t have anyone because I am a reclusive shut in.
    • I’m a 1.
  • How close do you live to your hospital?
    • 1: within one mile.
    • 10: 5+ hour drive.
    • I’m a 1.
  • How do you like your treatment team?
    • 1: love them!
    • 10: Fuck those guys.
    • I’m a 1.
  • How is your mental health?
    • 1: this cancer shit is easy!
    • 10: I can’t believe I have cancer this is crazy why do I have cancer what am I going to do how am I going to survive who is going to help me I feel so alone and I am so depressed and sickandmiserableandfuckcancerallthetimeIcan’teatorsleeporenjoyanythingbecauseIamprobablyjustgoingtodieandlifeismeaninglessandthereisnocomingbackfromthisfuckfuckfuckfuck.
    • I’m probably a 3. I have my moments (some of it as a side effect of the drugs. Fuck chemo flight or flight all the time anxiety).
  • How much is cancer going to affect your everyday life after active treatment?
    • 1: I have to take a pill everyday.
    • 10: I am going to be in pain for the rest of my life. I have to keep getting chemo to keep my cancer from killing me. Also, now I can’t have kids.
    • I’m a 1 (I hope… ).

0-25: Congratulations! You have the best possible cancer and very little cancer cred. But you are healthy and happy! (Unless you are an independently wealthy positive person with pancreatic cancer. It’s not a perfect system, ok??!)

26-49: This is going to fuck you up for awhile, but you’ll probably look back and say, “That was a really hard time, but it’s mostly over.”

50-75: You have pretty average cancer. I mean, it’s cancer, so pretty awful. This sucks, but it could be worse, right?

76-100: Congratulations! You have ALL the cancer cred. I bow down before your cancer superiority and you can pull the cancer card all the time every day for the rest of your life to win any argument or get free stuff. You are also in a HORRIBLE situation with awful cancer… so…. it’s a trade off, I guess?

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