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Emotional support

Emotional support

Posted by LucyK on Nov 8, 2019 1:03 pm

How many of you have felt completely abandoned by their significant other after cancer treatment. He was around for my long hospital stay, but am high risk for relapse so cannot travel yet. Only 3 weeks after discharge, he has already booked a 9 week adventure vacation, leaving me at home on my own.  First time in our decades together this has happened.  I need help with some daily living chores due to lack of energy.  Also need rides to medical appointments.  I do not have family nearby to help.  I confronted him with my feelings. His response was that he "needs a break because this has been so stressful".  I said "stressful on you? What about my stress?  I almost died twice in the past 4 months".  I am hurt, crushed, and an emotional train wreck.  It is as bad or worse than receiving the terrible news that I had cancer.

Sorry, I just had to get this off my chest to make myself feel better today.  I will be seeing a counsellor to discuss my situation.  Thanks for listening.

Re: Emotional support

Posted by Brighty on Nov 8, 2019 1:17 pm

LucyK‍   unfortunately  some people can not handle it when their partners are diagnosed  with a life threatening  illness.  I'm so sorry you are going through  this.   I'm going g to tag Runner Girl‍  who had experienced this as well .  She can tell you how she coped.   

Re: Emotional support

Posted by Runner Girl on Nov 8, 2019 1:40 pm

Oh LucyK‍ ,

You just wrote my life story.  I'm so sorry.  You are not alone.  I've been thru pretty much the same thing as you.  There is, in many cities, a ride service with volunteers taking cancer patients to their appointments and then back home.  Please contact your cancer centre and speak with a social worker who can enlighten you to all of the services they have available.  What city are you in?

My story is alot like yours.  We had issues, but nothing was insurmountable.  Just after Christmas 2017 his step father passed away, he flew out to Ontario for a week, never asked me to accompany.  Two weeks later in January, 2018 my mom died suddenly and unexpectedly.  As her executor I suddenly had a second job and alot of things I had to handle.  Fortunately I think mom was watching from above because everything happened so quickly and easily.  Two months after she passed my doctor found my breast lumps.  For my biopsy I was told I needed a driver, the fiance said he'd already taken too much time from work, so I had my friend Laura go with me.  Surprisingly he showed up just before they called me in, I told the two of them they could duke it out to see who was taking me home after.  When I was given my results by my doctor the fiance was late arriving.  In the parking lot after I offered him an out, told him I was fighting this and if he wanted to walk go now.  He said he was Team Gayle and we'd fight this together.  I was relieved but that didn't last long.  I had my lumpectomy on May 23rd and went back to work the following Monday.  On June 16th I ran a half marathon, I'd been training for months and wasn't going to let cancer stop me.  Right after this he told me he wanted to go on a trip, that he was stressed out.  Like you I'm shocked, you're stressed out - I have the cancer!  I checked with my doctor and they would not clear me to fly.  I told the fiance this and suggested we stick within Alberta and drive somewhere.  To this I was told he was suicidal and needed a break and was going to Las Vegas for a week.  Off he went.  When he returned he tried to guilt trip me into feeling sorry for him because he went alone.  In July, 2018, the weekend before I started chemo he moved me into the spare bedroom.  This came with a variety of excuses, none of which made sense to me.  He took me for my chemo appointments, sat there while I had chemo (distracted on his phone or with talking to the cute nurses), then took me home and left.  When I had bad side effects he brushed them off as nothing.  A week after my 3rd chemo he told me to move out of his house by month end.  We talked and I thought we had resolved the issues.   He took issue with the radiation doctor examining me and that was the last appointment he went to with me.  Told me I could go myself now.  And so I did.  I drove myself to and from the remainder of my appointments.  On May 2, 2019 at 4 in the morning he told me I needed to move out and I said sure.  I found a place, told him I had and he said he didn't want me to go.  2 weeks later when nothing had changed I tried to talk to him, he started shouting at me.  I couldn't help myself, I started laughing at him, and told him I'd move asap.  I lost the first place, but quickly found another, that I liked even better than the first.  I moved in August and couldn't be happier to be away from that toxic man.  

Please know that it is NOT YOU.  This is all on him.  I know you're hurt, but you are strong, you've fought cancer.  Let's talk more, I think I can help you thru this.

Runner Girl

Re: Emotional support

Posted by LucyK on Nov 8, 2019 2:46 pm

Thank you Runner Girl.  It is difficult but I will manage.  I am not one to share my problems publicly but needed to vent my anger and frustration.  I have managed to coordinate rides for my appointments.  Canadian Cancer does not have a ride program here.  I live too far from the hospital.   I suppose between my medical challenges and partner challenges things will be tough for a while.  I will not be surprised if we separate. 

My big worry is my long term survival chances are very low.  If the cancer returns, it is highly probable I will die.  My specialist said if it comes back there is not much they will be able to do for me.  Survival rate is 26% for the next 4 years.  It improves after the 5th year.

I am amazed someone could be so selfish, cruel and heartless when he knows my survival odds.

Re: Emotional support

Posted by Runner Girl on Nov 8, 2019 2:52 pm

LucyK‍ ,

If you ever want to talk just let me know.

You seem to have things handled, that tells me you're strong.  My bet is you will defy those odds and make the 5 years and beyond.

Runner Girl

Re: Emotional support

Posted by LucyK on Nov 8, 2019 6:19 pm

Thanks.  I will try to post an update when this all sorts out.

Re: Emotional support

Posted by Cynthia Mac on Nov 9, 2019 9:37 am

Hi, LucyK‍ , I’m sorry to hear about your situation. What your partner has done happens, sadly, and when it does, it’s almost always a “them problem” as opposed to a “you problem.” His running away from the situation is a betrayal to you, and that’s why it hurts so badly. 

I’m glad you’re seeking out someone to talk to. I had to do that in my last live-in relationship, too, and it did help.

The reason you are so “amazed someone could be so selfish, cruel and heartless” is because you are SO NOT THAT. That whole “opposites attract” thing can be so overrated!

I hope you’re having a better day today.

Re: Emotional support

Posted by Picasso’s mannequin on Nov 10, 2019 10:00 am

Oh, I’m sorry for people who've had partners who are so clueless. Best that they go, whenyou find out what they are made of and it’s like that. Hurts like hell. I had a partner who I found out was lying about pretty much everything.  I don’t think he was bad, just failing at life.  It would have been horrid to have found out while dealing with cancer.

It certainly clears the way for making new friends.

My Spouse is very supportive, but he is a computer guy,  and he is a slow learner with nursing skills, and I do need help.
It’s weird because I have much more health care training, but we muddle along with difficulty. We try to make it funny, if we can.but... It took us a while.There are Home Care, care workers in our area, and they helped with daily living tasks. I did this to take pressure off my hubby and also encouraged him to leave country when he needed to do a business trip...with people he liked as a break. He postponed it until I could make it with the home care assist.  He’s suffering too.

Our cancer agency was very bad at looking into services for us and we had to dig around ourselves. I even had two social workers who didn’t do a lot, not even much emotional support. It may be because they are all overworked because of the doctor shortage. I hope that is the reason.


Re: Emotional support

Posted by Cynthia Mac on Nov 10, 2019 10:20 am

Picasso’s mannequin‍ , there is a community services locator on cancer.ca’s site... you might find it helpful: https://csl.cancer.ca/en. I’ve found it very easy to use, and hope it will help you.

Re: Emotional support

Posted by Picasso’s mannequin on Nov 10, 2019 12:24 pm

Thanks Cynthia. I regret not asking here months ago.! Thanks for sharing with us.