When Sonali Bendre was diagnosed with a “high-grade” cancer, she was certain that she did not want to hide it from her thirteen-year-old son Ranveer. At the India Today Conclave 2019 in Delhi, the actress revealed how she broke the news to him.
“He was on a school trip that summer. I could have sent him back home and everyone was saying, ‘Let him come home, you deal with this over there.’ But I said no, I need to see him. I need to be able to talk to him. That’s the way Goldie and I have brought him up. We have always been very honest with him and the only thing we were hoping is that by not lying to him, he will not lie to us and be honest with us,” she said.
Sonali said that Ranveer was a “sensitive child” and if she was not completely honest with him, he might “misconstrue it and come to all kinds of conclusions”.
“When Goldie told him… Ranveer is asthmatic… he went quiet. He took out his inhaler and took one puff. Goldie asked, ‘Do you understand what it is?’ He said, ‘Yeah, I do. Mumma and me have read a book. Papa, it’s going to be very tough on the family and we all need to be in it together,'” the actress got teary-eyed as she revealed.
“Children are resilient and they understand far more than we understand,” Sonali said, adding that she insisted that Ranveer attended her chemotherapy sessions.
“Without him having said it, I felt he was kind of tiptoeing around the process. He had come to the doctor with me and asked a lot of questions. Suddenly, he became the guy who was taking care of me – ‘Mumma, are you eating properly?’ But yet, there was something that I was feeling. When I insisted on him coming and he came for the chemotherapy, he said, ‘Oh, this is not so bad.’ I asked what did he think. He said, ‘I thought there would be a lot of blood and tubes from your nose.’ I knew somewhere he was holding himself back and he was so relieved when he saw that,” she said.
“I told him that this was a medicine that would make mumma okay so you have to welcome it. You have to be honest because the moment something is a mystery, it becomes a monster,” Sonali added.