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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 Supporting someone with cancer


Topic Supporting someone with cancer

For anyone caring for someone with cancer

  • 149 conversations

Getting it right...

Started by Anonymous on 10 February 2018 at 21:26
Edited on 11 February 2018 at 15:26

My wife of 25 years was diagnosed with terminal cancer in November 2017. We have two daughter 18 and 23 years old and we have been devastated as a family with the question ... why us? It has been a hard journey so far with much emotion and upset. People outside the family say how well we are coping but we don’t feel we are coping behind closed doors. Many people Keep referring to all the support that will be there for us to help but we struggle to find it. Organisations do offer counselling but there is often a waiting list or it is far away and difficult to access without taking time out of work and school which we already struggle to do taking my wife for treatment, hospital appointments and so on. It sounds like we are moaning and should pull ourselves together but it is so hard at times. It is great that the on-line forum exists to talk to others as we have been unable to join support groups or find support groups. How do other members access support and help? McMillan are good for financial support and advice and we have been grateful for what we have received. What has worked for anybody else in this situation? People talk about you will find your own way...but we often feel utterly lost in it all and flap about trying to work out how to find a way through. So many emotions and worries to deal with and I am scared at times it is pulling us apart as a family. If you have kept reading to this point, thank you as I feel like I given so much negativity about where we are. But it does help to put it in writing and to know that others may understand. There is no guide to where we are, how we should act or what we should do...but I just want to get it right for my wife and two daughters and to find a way...

Comments (1)

Displaying 1 comments

  • Picture of SusieQ
    From SusieQ  
    12 February 2018 at 10:42


    First of all, a warm welcome to Maggie's Online Centre. It sounds an incredibly tough time for you all as a family currently. Trying to juggle appointments, work, be there for each other, and deal with the emotional turmoil - all at the same time - it can feel overwhelming.

    You're right, it can feel as if the support is lacking sometimes - in a way, that's why online works well, as you can access it 24 hours a day. However, as a family you may all benefit from face to face contact too.

    You mention that your wife has terminal cancer - and I wondered if she has had a referral to your local specialist palliative care team? The reason I suggest this, is that she/you could have a specialist nurse visit you all at home - and be able to access local support (complementary therapies, counselling, respite day care, symptom management etc). People often imagine this is purely for the end of life stages (which can feel a big deterrent) - but an early referral can help keep things on an even keel (emotionally, as well as practically). A GP, Hospital specialist nurse or consultant can make the referral for you.

    I realise that the practicalities of getting to a support centre are difficult with work etc, but wondered, with half term coming up, if there was a window of opportunity. You mentioned where you live, in your profile, so our nearest Maggie's Centre is Maggie's Newcastle. The support is available for all of you - so it might be worth dropping by, and seeing how we can help?

    Many people report that using online support group forums are a help too. I dont know which cancer your wife is dealing with, but there are many site specific forums, which partners and family members can join too. (There's a search facilty on Macmillan Cancer Support website which can help you find what is in your area).

    Family, friends and work colleagues can also be a support - although they often dont know how to help, so may need you to ask specifically - it might be organising lifts, helping with the teenage children, just being a friendly listening ear when you need it.

    There will be others here, who have been where you are today, and I hope they'll add what has helped them in these circumstances.

    In the meantime, I'll drop you a line and say 'hello' - and we can talk some more about what is going on for you all. Even putting down your thoughts and feelings may clear a space in your mind, so that you can carry on...

    Warm wishes




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