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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.

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Picture of Topic Friends and family


Topic Friends and family

For anyone supporting someone else with cancer

  • 156 conversations

Crushing realisation

Started by Anonymous on 06 December 2017 at 09:55

Hi guys,

My mum was diagnosed with bowel cancer back in June and started 5 weeks of radiotherapy, which it partially responded to, was going to have an operation but found out that she has a liver liason that wasn't there before. 

So instead she is going to start pallative chemo and see how that goes, which they will re assess the idea of surgery after a while.

So this pallative word terrifies me! Do I need to prepare for the worst?

In my head it is all over, my mum is being fantastic and staying positive but the grief feels like it is eating me up!

Anyone got any tips on how to stay strong?



Comments (1)

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  • Picture of SusieQ
    From SusieQ  
    06 December 2017 at 10:45
    Edited on: 06 December 2017 at 10:50


    I imagine the news of your mum's palliative chemotherapy has come as scary news? Some of this fear sounds to be around the word 'palliative', which many people think of as meaning that the end is near. However, paliative treatment/care can be commenced much earlier on in cancer treatment, as part of symptom control and cancer management.

    'Palliative treatment' is given to people to relieve symptoms and extend both quality and quantity of life. (see Cancer Research Uk's explanation - 'Palliative treatment'). The doctors will be aiming to shrink down your mum's liver lesion, and then, if it works...reconsidering surgery.

    A proportion of people with advanced bowel cancer respond really well to chemotherapy, and it can extend their lives. It's often started early, as it's a good way to manage the cancer, so it doesnt sound as though your mum is in the very late stages of her illness. However, her oncology team will know more about her case, and the extent of her cancer.

    The hard thing is knowing that the cancer is here to stay. However, if all goes well, the cancer may shrink and stabilise - and she'll have more time on her side.

    When someone we love gets cancer, and it's more advanced than first realised...many people start grieving. Grieving for loss of life before cancer, and the unbearable thought that they might not be here in the future ...whenever that might be. It's called 'anticipatory grief', and it sounds natural that you're feeling this at the moment. (you may find my blog 'anticipatory grief' to be a helpful read?).

    Your mum is likely to know how worried and sad you are - and it's Ok to acknowledge these feelings with her. You don't always have to be strong - be kind to yourself...

    I'll drop you a line and introduce myself - and you can message Robyn or me anytime...

    Warm wishes




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