How to deal with a parent's terminal diagnosis

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How to deal with a parent's terminal diagnosis

My 77 year old Dad had a car accident about 12 weeks ago and was in rehab for 8 weeks with lots of broken bones. When scanning him for injuries they found cancer and we subsequently learned it was bowel that had spread to the liver. His oncologist has given him 12-18 months. He has been home now for about 4 weeks and is on his second round of capecitabine, soon to be 'something stronger' - the capecitabine was to allow his bones to heal more before stronger chemo slows/stops the healing.


How have people coped with a diagnosis like this? I live with my mum and dad, and I have been breaking down and crying everywhere - on the bus, driving, at work, in the supermarket, and often at home in the morning and the evening (but not in front of my family).  My gp was so alarmed at me crying through an appointment where I asked for a grief counsellor referral that he gave me a script for sertraline (which I haven't taken).


I have been using some online resources as recommended by my gp - smiling mind, mood gym etc.


But - how do people cope with all the 'what-if' thoughts? This is what makes me break down, it's when I have time to myself and my mind wanders to all the bad things that are happening, might/are going to happen, and the grief, and the stress on top is just awful. It's hard enough watching my once fit and active dad recovering from his injuries and being in a lot of pain, without this on top too. I am also worried about my mum who currently has no car (it was written off in the accident) so is essentially stuck at home with no way to go out unless I take her, which of course I do but I also have to go to work.


Anyway, thanks for listening.

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Re: How to deal with a parent's terminal diagnosis

So sorry about your dad Sarah. As if the car accident wasn’t bad enough. To get a cancer diagnosis is just terrible for you all. I think you are just normal with being so upset. It’s such a shock and it can create so much anxiety. Just have people who you can be honest with about how you feel. People you can cry with. Even talking to a support person at the cancer council is really helpful. Sending you lots of prayers and love. 🙏💕 Linda 

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