A couple of weeks ago my father wasn't even diagnosed!
Since then he has had an awake craniotomy that removed a large portion of the tumour and is due to start radiation and chemo in coming weeks.
I guess I am wanting to know how best to support him, and also my mother (married 40+ years) as this has just come out of nowhere and I'm not sure on how best to help.
Do I suggest he use this forum? Do I suggest my Mother uses this forum?
From what I have read Grade III Anaplastic Oligodendroglioma's in older patients don't have the greatest prognosis. Is treatment the best way forward, is staying upbeat and optimistic better than being realistic? I am so confused.
Any advice from someone with experience with this type of cancer would be much appreciated however any helpful advice from cancer sufferers, family and friends would be great also.
I am very sorry for your father's illness. Cancer is a terrible disease, but you can be realistic & remain positive at the same time. It may be hard in some cases, but it is possible. Yes, it is a very good idea to get both of your parents involved with this forum, as the more information they can gather the better they will be armed to deal with situations that arise. Tallking with people who suffer in the same or similar ways, can only be a good thing.
Don't forget about looking after your health as well, both physical & mental health. A lot of carers are so busy looking after their partner/family member (or whoever) & they forget to take care of themselves.
I don't know anything about the cancer your father has but I do know that the prognosis the doctors give are only timelines they THINK will happen. So much depends on the person's strength of will to live, their determination to keep on going. It is important to keep up a good diet & drink plenty of water, & excercise as best they can.
I do hope all the best for your father.
How is your Dad doing this morning?
You are more than welcome to refer both your parents to this forum if you think they would like to use it, the forums are monitored by myself and the teams here at Cancer Council across Australia.
If your Dad is up to it, there's a program called Cancer Connect which is for people who are newly diagnosed or looking at treatment options, that gives a person with cancer the opportunity to talk 1-on-1 over the phone with a trained volunteer who has gone through the same or similar cancer and/or treatment. Or volunteers could also be matched on life situations, such as some who may have young kids and has cancer for example. This program is free of charge.
To find out more about Cancer Connect, I'd highly recommend giving 13 11 20 a call and having a chat to one of the trained information and support consultants, all of whom are health professionals in their own right. They will also be able to assess your father's situation and link you in with any other services as needed such as counselling or things available in your local area.
Another program that I'd like to let you know about are our Telephone Support Groups. This one would be appropriate for either yourself or your Mum, we have a group for those caring for someone with cancer. These groups typically have 3-8 members along with 2 facilitators, and meet together over the phone twice a month for an hour apiece. They are a great way for offering and seeking support, as well as sharing experiences with people who get what you're going through. You can also skip sessions if you need to. You can contact that team directly on 1300 755 632 or just reply to the welcome email I sent you earlier with your best contact number and time, and I can have them call you to have a further chat about it - they sit right behind me.
You may also like to check out our podcasts, which are located here: https://www.cancercouncil.com.au/podcasts/. These are recorded with Julie McCrossin as the host and cover a range of topics such as caring for someone with cancer, making treatment decisions and family dynamics.
And thank you @Budgie, as always
Cancer Council Online Community Manager
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