its 2am and i cant sleep.. i keep wondering how ppl who i once called my 'friends' no longer talk to me.. its like they wont invite me out because they think im to busy caring for my partner.. its strange how you go through a major crisis and ppl suddenly become distant.. it hurts and makes u feel terribly alone.. does any1 else have experiences like this as a carer?
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Super Contributor
Hi maddie I feel for you because it is hard to be in your situation. I try and think how I was before I got all this new found knowledge of cancer. Did I understand what others were going through? I can answer that question with a "no". It is the same for our friends, they don't know and they do not automatically understand. I get frustrated also as I think we all just want someone to understand, hence, this site being invaluable for quite a lot of people. It helps with our sanity. Julie
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Contributor
hey yea i guess thats true, i cant even imagine now wat its like to be 'normal again' and not have to worry bout this.. this site does provide some sanity 🙂
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Super Contributor
That's the thing ... we will never go back to how we were before. 🙂 Which isn't all bad if you don't stay mourning the losses and look at what we have gained from our experiences.
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Not applicable
Hi Maddie, true friends will be there for you through thick and thin,maybe the ones who don't bother anymore were never in the former. I have a 2 true friends who were there at my bedside in ICU 1 hour after my surgery( they told the staff they were my siblings..haha) true story. I go with what I have left in friendships and besides family they are the ones worth keeping. Julie is correct in saying that we will never go back to being our normal selves and this site is the closest we will come to meeting people that understand what we are going through. ...........Keep positive......... wow I wrote a paragraph with no humour in it at all, how oroud I am..hahaha Dave
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Regular Contributor
Hi Maddie, It must be so much harder for you as you and your partner are so young. I agree with Dave though - stick with those who have been there for you and who you can ask for help and don't worry about the others. You may find some new friends along the way!Don't be afraid to ask the ones who have stuck around for some help and maybe invite them out sometimes. It's tough at times. Samex
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Occasional Contributor
Hi Maddie, Yes, some people just don't know how to communicate with people who are sick or close to someone sick. We just had a very close friend visiting for a week. She lost her husband last October and has been coping extremely well. My partners brother and wife were/are going over to SA (where she lives) to pick up a car part and were going to stay overnight with her, something that she would have loved. The problem is that they still haven't decided when, and we had to convince her not to put off coming here (we are shifting and she wanted to see our property for one last time) as they may go over there. Whilst she was here they were going to call and pop over the next day, guess what - yes, there was no call. I am very disgusted with them as she was extremely disappointed in not seeing them and she now understands what we have been saying in the past. They actually went over to her husband's funeral last year, but didn't go back to the house and have a quick chat, instead just headed back home. I find it hard to understand these people, especially as death in the family is not new to them, although quite a while ago. As everyone else says, don't worry about those who haven't kept in touch, it does happen, and enjoy the company of those who have kept around - they are much worth your time. I am sure that there will be people who will surprise you with their generosity, and sometimes friends are closer than even family. good luck, craftyone
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Contributor
thanks everyone 🙂 it is hard.. i dont know why people do the things they do.. one of my close friends refuses to answer my texts calls etc.. i guess i have to be strong and not care as much as i used to.. i just wish as horrible as it sounds that they knew how it felt to be me for just one day.. to feel the strain the effort it is to do the things i do to cope... in a way dealing with what i am at a young age has made me stronger is suppose.. i guess that is the only posative thing to come out of this, it does make you a stronger person 🙂
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Regular Contributor
Maddie, it's good to hear you spaking so strongly. Well done. I agree with craftyone about friends sticking about better than family at times. While I am very close to my brother and sil,they are very involved with their own lives. When I was diagnosed with depression, I tried to talk to my sil about it but she cahnged the conversation to herself in a flash.On the other hand, I have a "band" of wonderful friends who have stuck by me through everything. One of them has just had surgery for a bowel tumour and will be likely to be starting chemo soon. My experience has made me much more sensitive to what he and his wife may need down the track. I'm pobably old enough to be your mum, but cancer is a grat age leveller! We are aslo really good listeners here. take care, S
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Contributor
thanks samex 🙂 i feel like i can really vent out on this site.. its a good place to get things off your chest 🙂
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Frequent Contributor
Hi Maddie, I found a lot of 'friends' would say, 'it will be OK, I know what you are going through!" This used to (and still does) make me so angry. NOBODY knows what we are going through, either as a patient or a carer, unless they have actually travelled this road themselves. My father died of cancer 16 years ago and I helped my mum care for him at home. His diagnosis was 12 months, however he passed away after 10 months. I remember getting angry with dad when he wouldnt get out of bed, and didnt want to go for walks, etc. I had no idea of the tiredness he was feeling. However, now that I am travelling the same journey as Dad, I understand what the tiredness is like! It is a tiredness that consumes your entire body, making it hard to even do the easiest of chores. My partner still thinks that when I am tired, I should go to bed to have a 'good sleep'. This tiredness is way beyond what sleeping can fix. My mother died of pancreatic cancer 2 years ago (2 months before my own diagnosis). As a carer, it is tremendously hard to imagine how our loved ones are feeling - but I also believe that carer's 'do it just as tough' as the patient. I too have a lot of 'friends' that dont bother to ring to see how I am going. I put this down to the fact that they just dont know how to handle the situation, and worse still - they dont know what to say. As a carer, just remember that it is OK for you to feel angry and helpless, and that sometimes if your partner is a 'bit sharp' with you or a little short tempered (trust me - I know about this side of it from being a patient - just ask MY partner)- just remember you are BOTH hurting and continually worrying about what is going to happen. But also remember, you are BOTH travelling this journey with the person YOU LOVE! Times are tough, but hopefully your love for each other will get you through. As for your so called friends, forget them and concentrate on the things that DO matter. Good luck and best wishes to you and your partner 🙂
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Not applicable
hi there maddie, Well funny enough it also 2am when i came across your post,i cant relate as a carer but can as someone who has cancer and i tell you what being isolated from my friends has been one of the hardest things about going through this experience.I think most people dont want to face there own mortality and believe they can live forever,especially when your young.Most of my friends have never even contacted me since my diagnosis,not even a single text or phone call but the ones that have are the ones i cherish and i know are genuine with some sort of understanding of what im going through.I just put more energy into them nowadays... dantheman
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Contributor
thanks for replying dan 🙂 yeah im trying to put more effort into the friends that actully do care.. i just cant help but feel hurt at the ones that havent bothered much with me.. i sometimes as bad as it sounds want them to feel what ive felt.. go through what ive been through so they understand.. it must be so hard as the patient and not hear from your friends 😞 dont worry im sure there are lots of people that care about you! ive learnt that the ones that dont care much right now, will regret it later.. sometimes people are so wrapped up in their own lives they think something cant possibly go wrong.. unfourtunatly lifes not all fun and games and i believe at some point something bad happens to someone.. i think you have to go through some bad experience in life in order to become the person you are today :) xo
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Contributor
Hey Maddie! Good to hear from you! I am one of the lucky ones in that my friends and family have been incredibly supportive (two mates I have known since Year 7 in high school)..... My husband has struggled in that his mates haven't kept in touch...well they have and did in the beginning, but because he was asleep or in pain or didn't feel like talking, it is human nature that slowly over the two years since he was diagnosed, they have dropped away. This is very hard for him- a very social being! But I think it is most important for you to go out with your mates, both with and without your partner.... Sometimes the very last thing I feel like doing is going out and smiling and talking....but the times I have forced myself to do it, I have been okay. And haven't thought about my situation for a short time. I reckon that you hang out with people who won't care if you burst into tears for no apparent reason, will give you a cuppa (or a gin) when required without you asking for it, who will make you dinner/buy you dinner if needed....and who genuinely care for you. And unfortunately, there is a very short supply of those magnificent people.... BUT! We are all here for you and can respect and understand what you are going through and how you feel. Positive vibes coming your way! PA
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thanks purple angel! 🙂 yeah its very hard as now my partner is getting grumpier and grumpier.. so i feel like i have nobody 😞 he snaps so easily now and gets really angry.. he's just finished radiotherapy so i can understand why but i feel like aside from him i dont really have many friends now.. i feel very isolated:(] how are you going anyway? hows ur hubby?
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Contributor
Hey Maddie! I hear ya! He can be grumpy with you, like he can be with no one else....which sucks for you..... I daily try and think what it is I have to learn from this situation......and I am still wondering! I think the worst is not knowing....and the uncertainty of what each day will bring. Will it be a good day, pain free, when they will get out of bed and talk to you.....or another day where you do everything by yourself and fall into bed at night exhausted beside them, and they are so out of it because of pain or medication or sleeping pills, or valium, that they don't even know you are there.... I agree with the isolation- from within your relationship as well as from your friends and normal social networks. I have been supported lately though by the Tweed Palliative Support Group. Meredith is an absolute angel and has hooked me up with a volunteer (another angel) who comes over a couple of days a week to help me with the kids in the afternoons. Another shoulder to carry the load.....as it were...... Maybe the oncology social worker where your man is being treated could hook you up with a similar service in your area, that might have someone who could have a coffee once a week, or help out around the house, or with the lawns, or something. The longer this journey takes, the more I realise I HAVE TO ask for help....even though it does not come easily to me. As for my darling husband, more surgery is on the cards as he has spent a lot of time in hospital of late with bowel obstruction weirdness......so we are trying to work the logistics of getting him to Sydney, and then seeing who can be there with him, for a potentially longish (2 or 3 month) stay. Our daughter started school this year, so we are mindful of not wrecking her routine too much. One foot in front of the other, keeping my head bowed to the wind..... Take care! PA
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