Been away from Cancer Connections for a while

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Occasional Contributor

Been away from Cancer Connections for a while

Hello I joined this community about 18 months ago while my husband was receiving radiotherapy and chemotherapy for his adenocarcinoma in head and neck area. The intensive chemotherapy he received for 3 months did not work and his cancer returned. The oncologists then decided to start him on hormone therapy which he has been on ever since. He had to change his hormone therapy in July this year as the one he was on stopped working effectively. One of side effects with his hormone therapy is emotional and moody outbursts. This can be very hard to cope with especially if there are younger children in the family. We have an 18 yr old and a 13yr old and they try to remain very strong. Does anyone else have trouble coping with this? Many thanks.
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Re: Been away from Cancer Connections for a while

Hi There, Sorry to hear about your story but I'm glad you took the time to reach out to this website again. I'm also glad to hear that on his initial diagnosis, he kept the fight on going for 18 months. It sucks to learn somethings haven't worked the way you planned and yes, I've read that HRT can have an emotional side effects. My father is on HRT, only recently, but he is suffering from Prostate Cancer and we believe some secondary cancers. We're hoping for the best for him and hoping that each and every moment we have with him is positive. If its possible, be sure to constantly keep an eye on your children. They are both of such an impressionable age - the 18 year old soon to enter the world of adult hood...and your younger, about to enter into their teenage years. If its possible, try and communicate clearly with them and encourage them to feel all the emotions that naturally come with caring for someone with cancer. Remember - its OK to cry. It's OK to worry. It's OK to anticipate the future... but also remember, these are very natural thoughts that come and go... and its so important for you to think positively about each everyone of our journey's in life. Best of luck and it would be great to hear from you. I strongly encourage you to reach out, even just to vent or share your thoughts on this forum. You have my personal commitment that I'll be here to listen! John
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Re: Been away from Cancer Connections for a while

Hi Anere Being on hormone therapy is like having a really bad case of menopause, except that it lasts longer. When I first went on it it was really bad. Mood changes, personality changes, hot flushes, cognitive dysfunction. Of course no-one tells you that this will happen as there has been little research done on it so there is hop evidence base for it! However, over time I learnt to cope with the symptoms and manage them better. Instead of getting frustrated at not remembering simply things I made notes of everything. Wherever I am likely to be, I have a small fan - I think they cost me $10 at Bunnings. So when a hot flush comes, I just turn on the fan. Learning that other people had similar symptoms also helped me to understand that I was not alone in this. Fifteen years later I am still on hormone therapy. Still have the effects but I manage them rather than letting them manage me. So fear I have been through menopause every eighteen months - six months on and twelve months off has been my regime, so that is ten times through menopause! Cheers Sailor And when men lose confidence and trust in those who lead, order disintegrates into chaos and purposeful ships into uncontrollable derelicts. Wall Street Journal Editorial 1952
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Re: Been away from Cancer Connections for a while

Thanks so much for your response. It always helps to hear about what other people are experiencing with the hormone therapy. I will buy my husband one of those pocket fans too, that's a good idea because as you know the hot flushes have a habit of popping up when you least expect them and they can be quite distressing. My husband also likes to write everything down in a notebook as he is becoming very forgetful. It's good that you have learnt to manage the side effects rather than let them manage you. I think my husband is trying to do that too, but it takes time and he just becomes so frustrated with the tiredness he experiences. Thanks again Cheers Anere
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