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As well as sharing experiences with our friendly online community, registered members are able to contact our experienced online team. The Centre is staffed during office hours and the online team aim to reply within 24 hours.

Psychologists and experts from other Maggie's Centres and partner organisations also facilitate some group and individual sessions.

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Topic

After cancer treatment

Finished treatment? Trying to find a new normal or perhaps feeling a bit lost and anxious - share experiences and practical tips with other members and the online team.

  • 42 conversations

Not coping

Started by Anonymous on 06 February 2018 at 20:01

Hi everyone,

I'm Michael and was diagnosed with Stage 3 bowel cancer in June 2014.  After surgery and chemo I have been in remission ever since.  I know I am lucky to have come through it as many others loose their life to this horrible disease but i just can't get over my diagnosis.

Every single twinge, pain, I convince myself that the Cancer is back even though I have had scans saying that there is no sign of Cancer.  I am making my wife's life a misery by obsessing about Cancer all the time.  It's got to the point where I sometimes think what was the point in surviving as I am not living life to the full due to my anxiety about the pains I feel and Cancer coming back.  

My GP prescribed me anxiety tablets to try and help with my anxiety but I couldn't even take them as they were making things worse so i don't know where else to go to get help, so I thought it might help me to talk about my feelings with others who have experienced what I am going through.

For anyone who has had bowel surgery, do you still get twinges years down the line?  What does everyone else do to cope with life after cancer?  Grateful for any tips and advice around how to cope with feelings of anxiety around Cancer.

Phew.......that was hard but nice to get it off my chest and look forward to getting to know everyone on here.

Michael

Comments (1)

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  • Picture of SusieQ
    From SusieQ  
    07 February 2018 at 10:41
    Edited on: 07 February 2018 at 12:53

    Hello Michael,

    I'm glad you've got in touch with us here at Maggie's Online Centre - things sound stressful for you at the moment.

    Living life after a cancer diagnosis and treatment can feel like permanently waiting for the next shoe to fall. After such a shock - having been through something that for a time, felt life threatening, - is scary. You sound to be on high alert, wondering and worrying about signs and symptoms you may be feeling.

    You're certainly not alone - anxiety about recurrence is very common. That doesn't always make the feelings any easier, though, as this is happening to you.

    There's a useful book, that can help explain what's going on for you, and give you some strategies to cope. 'The Cancer Survivor's Companion: practical ways to cope with your feelings after cancer' might be a start for you and your wife to read through? 

    Secondly, it sounds like a good idea to visit your local Maggie's Centre, and talk about how you're feeling. There are practical and psychological ways Maggie's can help you learn to live with the uncertainty. You'd be very welcome - and you'd find out you're not alone in how you feel. (There's also an article which might offer some insight - 'Coping with the fear of recurrrence' - Cancer.Net).

    From conversations I've had with other people who have had bowel surgery of any kind, is that there are often twinges years down the line. The bowel now has scar tissue, and perhaps it gets inflamed now and again?

    The trouble is, people post cancer treatment are advised to report any new symptoms to their GP or hospital team - yet also told to try and live life normally. It can be hard to balance those opposing thoughts. You may find you get even more anxious when appointments are due too.

    I'm sure others on here will recognise what you're going through - and may have tips of their own to help you.

    You can also message Robyn or myself anytime if you'd like to talk anything through.

    Warm wishes

    Sue

     


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