Right now I'm dealing with gallbladder issues and I might have to have it out. I also have serious anxiety issues, mostly around health stuff.
So it is not helpful when people keep telling me how they know people who died after gallbladder surgery. "Oh, it's such a simple surgery but my friend got MRSA and died, even though she went to (the same hospital I'm going to.) "
This happened when I had my wisdom teeth out. "My uncle died after having his wisdom teeth out, did I ever tell you?" Well no. No you didn't.
Also, yes I know people sometimes die from anesthesia. This is not helpful. It's not helpful when you tell me about your mom/friend/etc who was perfectly healthy and then just dropped dead. Or they were fine and then got a cold and died from the cold.
My mind cannot let this go of these stories. It sticks to it and then I am sitting there all night, sobbing, waiting for death to come. I wish this was a joke, but no. This is how my mind works.
I have no control over this. If I have to have it out, I have to have it out. All I can do is having faith in my doctor, discuss my concerns about infection beforehand and pray.
tl;dr: When someone you know is sick and having surgery, just say "I'm so sorry, do you need me to feed your cat? come visit? hold your hand?" Do not scare the shit out of them.