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I am definitely going through the menopause now after my treatment. I know a lot of my emotion will be jolted up and down by my menopause but I also think a lot of it has to do with the journey I have just been on and not knowing how to rationalise everything or move on properly. The hardest thing at the moment is since my last treatment day, it feels like my boyfriend has just switched off. He hasn't even looked at what symptoms the menopause can cause and when I try to talk to him, he glazes over so don't feel I can open up to him. Also when something has upset me and I try to calmly tell him, he flies off the wall and gets really bad tempered and won't let me speak.
I'm trying so hard to manage my emotions but the one person I should be able to speak to about all my fears and problems, I can't. Has anyone else been in a similar situation and how did they fix it? x
I'm not cervical cancer, but saw your post and it rang a bell with me so popped over here to say hi... I'm anal cancer, but had pelvic RT and chemo that gave me an early menopause. I think a lot of the emotional stuff is actually dealing with the end of treatment rather than the menopause as such. Cancer messes with your head so much and I found that stage after treatment the hardest.
My partner comes across as not interested and did this 'ooh you'll be fine' thing a lot and didn't want to talk about it, but I realised it was because he was scared himself and couldn't deal with it all. He hid it all behind talking and worrying about other things that got me upset thinking he was more bothered about selling our house or the cat or whatever than me. It has been 9 months since my main treatment finished and he has started to relax a little bit and now he will mention cancer or point to an article in the paper about it or somehting. He still does the blanking thing sometimes but I think it is hard for some men to talk about these emotions and things. They feel they have to be strong for us and oh I don't know... I just know that he does care really really hugely and I think he just can't cope about it, so I come on here and talk about it all with people who understand and who can listen and cope and don't chat to him about it. I tend to just mention to him things, not in a moaning way, but more just 'wow, my hot flushes are crazy tonight' or something, or sorry, got to go to the loo again, my bowels are going mad today... The less I talk about it to him, the more he asks me how I am doing and how are various things etc. When he does ask me, I can say I am scared about this or that and he listens and says you must tell me these things... so I wait for him to open up the conversation so I don't get the 'glazed over' or angry thing. I think they just don't know what to do or say and perhaps don't want to go there as its too much for them. We are in it and can deal with it a lot better I think than those that care for us.
I know its not a solution as such, but that is how I deal with it and I get my support on here for those sorts of things. I imagine he is still reeling from the idea of you having cancer, never mind other symptoms. I know we should be able to talk to them, but I think it is too big a deal for them somehow. Over time, he will talk with you I am sure, as mine has started to do, but to be honest, he's never going to be interested in things like the menopause! I just accept that and chat on here to other women or my friends etc.
In the meantime, you know we are all here to help and support. I find it invaluable here and leave my family with 'positive' me most of the time..
Sending you a hug
Little My x
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Hi, i had to make a comment as my daughter will also go through an early menopause once treatment has ended, she also has a boyfriend that she wanted to have children with and i know it will be very hard for them both in the long term. As far as men dealing with your illness, as a 'mature' person i can only offer my experience, and hopefully a small amount of wisdom and say that the men in your life will deal with things very differently to you, they will have learnt not to talk to you about how ill you've been because it scares the c**p out of them and so they go into shut down mode. If you think about it, they may have thought they were going to lose you, and it would have been impossible for them to talk to you about that. Men don't talk to other men about these things in the way women do, so what they do is seem flippant about it all, as though it is all over now and time to move on. Extremely hard for you when you've been through so much already.
I guess in many ways they need counselling too, easier for them to talk to a stranger about how they felt, how they will deal with you seeming 'different' and learning strategies to cope with what is essentially a new kind of relationship with you. They will adapt, but it will take time, all you can do is support each other, communicate and show how much they mean to you. Good luck xx
Thank you all for your responses. I agree that we both should be going to counselling so we can overcome the problems and talk them through in a comfortable environment. Convincing him to go to counselling may be difficult as he is quite old fashioned when it comes to things like that i.e he doesn't see stress as a cause of illness etc just an excuse or "fob off" from doctors not knowing the real cause. And similarly with talking to counsellors, he doesn't appreciate the benefits. But ideally we should have some individual counselling first and maybe a few joint sessions afterwards, I don't know.
I have my counselling booked so I will discuss it with my counsellor and maybe if I come at it with the angle that my counsellor thinks it will be beneficial for me to have him there and beneficial for him too, that might convince him. x
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