Shannen Doherty has been chronicling her battle with cancer on social media for some time now, with multiple postings on Instagram of key moments, including the administration of chemotherapy at a Los Angeles clinic. She has rightly been praised for her brave and positive approach to the devastating disease.
Now, Doherty has given a powerful interview to Chelsea Handler, and the intimate chat aired on the latest episode of Handler’s new Netflix series, Chelsea.
At one moment in the interview Handler, who is a friend of Doherty’s, breaks down in tears.
“Don’t cry,” Doherty, who is also in tears, tells her.
Chelsea throws her head back and says, “I mean all right, hold on a second, fuck.”
Doherty, perhaps still best known for her roles on the television series Beverly Hills 90210 and Charmed, as well as the cult films Heathers and Mallrats, is undergoing chemotherapy to try to stop the spread of breast cancer. She was diagnosed in March 2015, but by early 2016 discovered that the cancer had spread to her lymph nodes. She had a mastectomy in May of this year, and will undergo radiotherapy following the completion of her chemo treatments.
She says: “I think what’s beautiful and hard and interesting about cancer is that it tears you down and builds you, and tears you down and builds you. It remakes you so many different times.”
“The person I thought I was supposed to be or was going to be or who I thought I was six months ago is now somebody completely different.”
“And I realize, ‘Wow, I really thought that I was so brave and so gracious this entire time and really I was just hiding.’”
Doherty has posted extensively on the subject of her cancer on Instagram, inspiring millions of people with her grace and openness in confronting the disease.
One recent posting read, “Life has handed us an interesting card with cancer and although we would both prefer to not be faced with such a terrible disease, we must also search for the good. Cancer gives a clarity that is unique.”