Since many people pull back because you have cancer, give yourself the option of pulling back, pushing back (pointing out the thing which bothers you to the person who is expressing it nicely) and the evicting them (drawing away) if you must.
YOU are the important person. YOU deserve to be happy, and you deserve to be able to go through diagnosis, treatment, etc. without any added baggage.....especially if it isn't yours in the first place.
I never heard of Robert Tew....I think I'm going to have to look more deeply into his work.