Gobsmacked

Had a really rough few months. Mum suffered a stroke in October where we were told mum had cancer. Obviously recovering from the stroke was a priority. Before Christmas, we were told that it was more likely to be a cyst as the results were conflicting. In my head this was impossible, how could they get the diagnosis so wrong. Monday we were told mum definitely has cancer, knocked mum for six, yesterday we found out it had spread and is stage 4. Am numb! Don't know how to support mum when I'm shocked and numb, obviously mum is devasted by the news. What do I do?

  • So sorry you’re joining us in such circumstances, sorry to hear your news. You don’t say what kind of cancer or where it’s spread but I would say to support her, listen to what she’s actually worried about, sometimes it’s not the things you’d expect, don’t bombard her with ways she can ‘help herself’ or stories of what happened to someone else’s mum or aunt, no matter how positive, it’s really trying. Help her to continue with the contacts she finds rewarding, seeing a best friend or sitting in a park, etc. And most importantly, look after yourself! Worrying about your kids is what we mums do all the time, if you can get some counselling for yourself to support you then grab it, or talk to a confidant. It’s like the airplane advise, put your own mask on first before helping others. You are obviously a loving and caring person to be on here even asking. All the best to you and huge hugs x

  • Thank you for your kind words.  It's Adenocarcinoma cancer, started in her ovaries and has now spread to her lungs.

    Fortunately I've got some counselling booked for Monday as I have been signed off work as I'm struggling with everything, am a teacher so rather stressful, and something had to give.

  • I’m an LSA in a primary so I totally understand you can’t do that role while you have all this going on in your head. You’ve done exactly the right thing in taking some time off and getting some counselling booked. I don’t know anyone with that cancer (I have breast cancer but we come across lots of other kinds during treatment) that’s really tough, I was hoping to give you some insight but I can’t. But keep talking, keep up the counselling and keep posting on here, it can be incredibly helpful just to get it out and writing it sometimes helps a great deal. Try not to google too much, none of us are averages or statistics, it can sometimes really make you worry about things you don’t need to worry about. There are enough what ifs. Big hugs xx

  • Sorry to hear that you are fighting breast cancer. Life seems unfair and very tough and I'm on the outside looking in.  How did you feel when you were diagnosed? My mum is putting on a brave face for me and is trying to organise things without being emotional.

    We were told yesterday that her cancer is aggressive and she has 6 months to live, or there abouts. Advised against Chemo due to the high risk if it causing another stroke.

  • Brutal. I’m sorry. I’ve had so many different emotions, but overall I’ve been pragmatic and practical, organising things made me smile, of course, organising it gives you some feeling of control. That will be important for your mum now. I don’t think you are outside looking in, you’re in the eye of the storm, with it all whirling around you. It’s far harder for you to ground yourself and gain that sense of control because you are mindful your mum has got to do it her way. You’re in the toughest of positions. What kind of relationship do you have with your mum? If you don’t mind me asking. Xx

  • I think you have to look after your own needs first. Care for yourself and it will allow you to care for her. You have had a big shock too.