Mental health issues.

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My wife has been diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time! She has started chemotherapy after a two month refusal! There seems to be a pattern - chemotherapy, good day, thinking she has an infection, anxiety over seeing medical team (district nurse, mental health nurse, and GP), becoming acutely anxious about her life with me!

she is being seen by the mental health team, has been from before the diagnosis. She blames everything on me, and becomes quite violent, resulting in things being broken!! All of this she has admitted to the doctors and mental health team. She has adopted my analysis of the mental health being the cake and the cancer being the icing!

 I’ve started divorce proceedings twice because of her verbal and physical abuse, but have cancelled it when she pleads for forgiveness. I’m at my wits end!! Having spoken to her GP, and her family having written to them after witnessing her behaviour, the GP say she has NOT got a mental condition, just anxiety and depression? Yet as I pointed out, if this were true - why the medication, mental health nurse, and the frequent talking’ sessions?

Her family and friends are worried because she has isolated herself from everything, including people coming to see her!

Why am I here? Well having contacted various organisations to help with the situation, they have offered her help! The macmillan nurse took my phone number but has failed to contact me! My local help organisations are swamped and couldn’t help!

 I need to talk to someone!

  • Hi  and welcome to the Macmillan Community but so sorry to hear about the challenges you are having.

    I have no first hand experiences that I can bring to the table that can help you.,…  but getting support from others who may be dealing with the ‘exact same' support challenges can help a lot so you may benefit from joining and posting in our 

    Family and Friends

    support group where you will connect with others navigating the challenges of supporting family.

    You may find it helpful to call the Macmillan Support Line open 8am-8pm (timings may differ across services) 7 days a week on 0808 808 00 00. This service provides cancer information, practical information, emotional support or just a listening ear.

    We also have our Ask an Expert section but do allow 3 working days for a reply.

    Talking to people face to face can be very helpful so do check to see if you have any Local Macmillan Support in your area, do also check for a local Maggie's Centre as these folks are amazing and support all the family.

    Please do get back to me if you need further help navigating the community.

    Mike (Thehighlander)

    It always seems impossible until its done - Nelson Mandela

    Community Champion Badge

  • Hello  

    I’m Steph, I’m part of the Community team here at Macmillan. May I wish you another warm welcome to the Community, although I am sorry that circumstances have brought you here. 

    Whilst you’re finding your way around, I hope you don’t mind me popping in here to offer you some further support. We were concerned when you mentioned the verbal and physical abuse happening at home. We wanted to make sure that you’re safe and that you have further support in place.

    Please do feel you can call 999 if you ever feel threatened and unsafe.

    I am so sorry to hear about your wife’s second diagnosis; it sounds as though you have both been through a lot for some time. Supporting someone with cancer can have a major impact on your life. We often hear that at times, it can feel just as hard for you as the person with the diagnosis. 

    Of course, alongside the cancer, you have the verbal abuse to deal with, and you mention she can  be ‘quite violent’.  Whilst I’m sure that the depression and anxiety your wife is feeling at the moment may be contributing to her behaviour, it’s never OK to abuse someone. It’s important that you look after your own well-being.  

    I wondered if you had tried any of the options I have listed below? 

    It can really help to talk openly about how you are coping so I am so glad you’ve found the Online Community and have reached out for some support on the site.  

    As Mike already mentioned, as well as the Online Community, the Macmillan Support Line is a safe place to talk through how you’re coping and access emotional support.  We don’t want you to feel you have to cope with this on your own.  Our Support Line teams are available 7 days a week, 8am-8pm on freephone 0808 808 00 00email or live webchat.

    There is further support and safe confidential spaces to get help and talk about how you’re coping. I am not sure of your gender, so I have listed a few options: 

    Victim Support – Support with domestic abuse

    Mankind – Helping men escape domestic abuse

    Refuge for women and children – domestic abuse support 

    There’s also an organisation called Relate who specialise in relationship support. To get advice and support, you can start a chat with them or find a local support centre

    In addition, your GP has a duty of care for your physical and emotional well-being and they will want to help you access the support you need just now. 

    I do hope the above information is helpful and reassures you that there is help available. There are lots of ways you can get help today so please do reach out for support. 

    I’d also encourage you to keep talking here, we’re here for as long as you need us.

    Online Community Officer
  • Thank you for helpful feedback. Unfortunately I’m in a good / bad situation? Yes I have wide group of family and friends supporting me, but at the same time I have been let down by the GP surgery, and associated teams! The counselling team have no vacancies (a six month delay! Although I’m still waiting), and of course plenty of help for my wife from various sources, but not for me!

  • Thank you all for your support! I’ve just returned from a respite ‘run away’. The day I left she convinced the hospital that she was vulnerable, being by herself - as I said before, this as a result of her forced isolation! She contacted me to say she was in hospital! She did not contact anyone else, including her siblings and ‘close’ friends! Interesting?