I thought I was coping…I’m not

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My partner received a stage 4 diagnosis for bowel cancer only when I insisted on driving him to A&E in October ‘22, despite his many protestations and massive denial, because he was so very ill. He had a bowel resection early the following day that removed the original tumour entirely, and he recovered very well. But even at that early stage we were told it had already spread to his lungs and any chemotherapy would be palliative, it was a shock for us both especially as the oncologist indicated the size of the tumour represented some 6 years or more of unseen growth. As long as he was asymptomatic, he was advised no need to start chemo, but when a ‘stiff back’ actually showed up as spread to 3 of his vertebra, he’s had chemo and a radiotherapy blast to improve the vertebra. The oncology team have been wonderful, and explained all the side effects to expect and what warning signs to look out for…but when the fever started my partner wouldn’t budge, just like last October…When I finally got him to hospital he was really relieved and grateful for the doctors and nurses, care and treatment, so assuming it’s not a death wish, why does he fight me so very hard when I can clearly see he needs urgent medical treatment? I thought I was coping, but I’m not.

  • Hi i am so sorry he  is putting  his anger and frustration on you, as someone who  has cared for a loved one with terminal cancer and am now the one being cared for i would struggle to say which is the hardest. I find councelling a big help and have weekly sessions. But i think you have to consent to therapy maybe you could seek out a little help and advice. I see millibob has just posted a couple of suggestions both of which i use and can thoroughly recomened, I also use my local hospice and a cancer charity too. As i said earlier it is just as difficult a time for you as it is for your partner. please look after yourself. take care.

  • I'll look into that tomorrow, I've benefitted from counselling in the past for bereavements, my partner supported my using that support, and even tried to get his father to seek help. I made the mistake of assuming he would seek it out if he felt he needed it, but that means I bluntly suggested it too soon after diagnosis and e was very vocally offended and against it. Perhaps there is a trick to introducing the topic I don't have, but need to learn. Thank you so much.

  • It's no problem, I hope it works out for you.

    If I can do anything else for you please don't hesitate to give me a shout.

    Best wishes - Brian.

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