Had cancer, got no friends.

lonelyangel
New Contributor

Re: Had cancer, got no friends.

Hi DaphneRose I did feel abit better getting most of that out :), i know everything happens for a reason a lifes a big lesson it just hurts having no-one to lean on and the thought our friendships were fake, that hurts as much as having cancer...its just so lonely they were the select few i used to confide in and right now i havent got the guts to ring a helpline for support.i havent tried meditation....but i def need to do something.sometimes its hard enough to put my thoughts into words and i feel silly and selfish as there is someone always worse off than me. my family are smothering me abit by not letting me move without them worrying i do understand there worried but i just cant discuss my thoughts and feelings with them, it would have just be nice to get some contact or quality time with my friends,but now if they did do it i would probably think they have done out of guilt........i hate what im feeling i hate being ill i know i cant change it. i just dont know what to look forward to and as they say postive people have more chance of surviving.....im looking for things to stay positive for but its hard.
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jules_jp
Contributor

Re: Had cancer, got no friends.

Lonely Angel, How are you? Where are you up to in your treatment? Unfortunately - lack of empathy is part of the baggage that comes with a diagnosis. You will find that people will treat you the same as they always have. Sounds like you have been there for everyone in your life and now its your turn to step back and look after yourself - I mean, really look after yourself (its ok for you to be a little selfish!) Find things that make you happy and feel good and likewise be around those people and do those things. Unfortunately, if your friend is not there for you, you have some options, have an open talk with her and give her a chance to help you in the way you need. Be clear about what it is you need or miss. It might seem obvious to you but not to her. Alternatively, find and make new friends. All I can say it is perfectly normal for you to grieve for the loss former life and friends. When diagnosed you're placed into a minority of the population not by choice, not by a car accident etc. but caused by our body not being able to rid of its own cells which cause the cancer. There are many support groups such as bcaus.org.au. The Cancer Council have monthly soirees for younger women - under 50 and workshops which are useful.
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CarlC
Occasional Contributor

Re: Had cancer, got no friends.

Hi Daphne, Lonely It is very hard when you are doing this yourself. I found that I was continually chasing people then I kinda stopped doing that as I just felt that the effort was not worthwhile. My disabilities are quite apparent but you know I still go out and have a coffee by myself or one of the very few people that are still around. Geess sometimes I think I have the plague or there is something wrong with my character. Anyway I have found meditation really helpful. PeterMac run meditation sessions on Monday and Thursday and they are really good. I have also started on antidepressants and sleep long periods and my body has a chance to recover. In Buddhism they say you must suffer before you realise the path you must travel and I am a firm believer in everything happens for a reason. With great compassion Carl
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Not applicable

Re: Had cancer, got no friends.

Hi Lonelyangel, I read your posts and really feel for you. It can be a lonely time, particularly living with such uncertainty. I was in my late 30s when first diagnosed and am now in my my mid 40s. I had one old friend who was dithering about seeing me not long after I was first diagnosed. I ended up confronting her and basically saying I enjoyed her company, doing things with her, but couldn't really deal with doubting her friendship. some people really just don't know what to do - it can be overwhelming for them. Are you able to see a psychologist? some of the cancer hospitals offer this service. It can be really helpful to freely talk about things and also to get a bit of feedback and reassurance that what you're going through is not uncommon for cancer patients. Also, take the time to do things you enjoy to do on your own. A walk in the park, cooking a lovely meal, seeing a movie, drinking a coffee in a nice cafe, having a beauty treatment whatever gives you pleasure. It need not cost anything, but may lift your spirits. Best wishes, Claudie
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lonelyangel
New Contributor

Re: Had cancer, got no friends.

Hi all,thanks for the replys ive had chemo/operation and am now on herceptin just waiting radiotherapy as delayed because i have not healed from my operation yet, i know i need to do something for my own sanity,i have mentioned to my nurses /docters etc i cant cope with my thoughts at the moment and its getting harder, they didnt say too much except to go to a group therapy(i couldnt do this ive tried once at the beginning but found it hard discussing my details with complete strangers). carl i too feel like im chasing my friends and making all the effort, but likewise there maybe not sure what to say too me, im the same back i feel im depressing them just telling them ive got an appointment, but if it was the other way round i would love too be there as much as they needed it,. claudie/jules i know what your saying is right i feel everything is just building up in my head since diagnosis and i am a little scared of it all blurting out at the wrong time, i feel im my own worst enemy bottling up but when friends distance themselves its made it even harder 4 me too open up too people, i know i have too learn something by this and hopefully can out it too practise even if i am alone. sorry rushing reply my heads spinning and didnt want to write an essay :)x
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squirt
Not applicable

Re: Had cancer, got no friends.

Hi, Was looking for a sight to help or just get some info & reaffirm that I am not going mad. My 11 year old has leukemia (ALL). This week the oncology ward said goodbye to one little boy and I was feeling that my girl is needing a little reassurance, not sure with what tho!! Not sure if this is the right place (can't find any Australian children's cancer forums, but the topics and discussions are relevant. Anyway, I have also come to the realization of this topic today. I have been so cross at so called "community", "caring acquaintances" and some family members. But today realized that they just have no idea - (should I dare say "poor things"?) the BIG C word has scared them away. They really have no idea how to handle it, let alone my child.... But please note in discussing this together, we laughed and called them all idiots - this life experience is their loss for not being a part of it. Anyway, thank you for the forum, I shall devour and delve further into everyone else's life to make more sense of my own (and hers) and thank you for the honesty...
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Jules2
Super Contributor

Re: Had cancer, got no friends.

Hiya squirt ... There is a site for children called camp quality which appears to have quite a bit of information on it. ALl the best to you both. Julie
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stevec
Contributor

Re: Had cancer, got no friends.

Hi squirt, Thanks for sharing your story. When I was 8 I developed ITP which is a blood disorder that affects platlet levels. For about 2 weeks they thought I had luekemia. Twently years later and my mum still says it was the hardest 2 weeks of her life, more than other events such as my dad dying of cancer, and me almost doing the same thing. I've got 2 kids and I can't imagine going through what your going through - its my biggest fear actually. Both my wife and I developed cancer at the age of 30 (within a year of each other, for some reason) and we both found age, or life-stage relevant support was very hard to come across. But from what I've seen we've got better support networks than kids do. I havne't been on this website much for a while, but when it launched it was intended to be a place where everyone could come to 'connect', including patients, survivors, family and anyone else that feels the need to talk about personal issues associated with cancer. So don't hold back and I hope you and your daughter are doing ok. Steve
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sarah
Contributor

Re: Had cancer, got no friends.

Hi All, Lonelyangel, it's like hearing my own voice. I have had cancer in my 20s (Hodgkins), and in my 30s (thyroid). I am now 39. It has been nothing short of hell, and I don't mean just the treatment. The lack of support I experienced was alarming and traumatic. I am very sure it contributed totally to my level of stress, and recovery. I believe that I have lived in PTS for many years, and I am frequently living in a dissociated state. My brain just couldn't cope with the situation. I can see something similar in you; you are not alone. I live now, a reasonably good life and all, building my own business, rebuilding my social life, planning an art exhibition, and helping others. I live though with the memories of abandonment and cruelty, of neglect and ignorance, from family, friends, colleagues, and the community at large (I found no effective support anywhere). It is (still) very painful when my mind lapses, and dwells in that general area, but it's also something that I try to face, and "deal" with. Meditation and fun/laughter is good. My perspective is less allowing than others, I see it's all well and good to say "people don't understand.." etc, but, I believe there's something more deliberate to the actions of many, and I have come to associate it with the animal instinct of survival, to put this idea simply: I have come to believe that some folks out there perceive us as genetically weaker. I have also come to believe that, part of the trauma of an experience such as ours is that, we have witnessed firsthand this "unpalatable" side to humans, and it has invariably shattered some of our illusions of bliss that we were once existing in. How do we go on, now that we see so much? That's been a hard question for me (and one that Jackson Brown tried to answer ;). Some folks here haven't had the same experiences as I have (abandonment etc), and I just cannot relate. I can only fantasies on how different my life would have rolled, had I had the support. Our lives and experiences as people are all so individual, my brain struggles to understand why some person has help, love and support when I (and others) have had a lions share of lack(!!). So, that's my bit to share. You are NOT alone, you are NOT going crazy. You probably are though, very stressed and freaking out; you have a lot on your plate, and it's understandable.
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CarlC
Occasional Contributor

Re: Had cancer, got no friends.

Hey Sarah, that is a great analysis of the happens to us because we got sick. I have been at this for 4 years now and boy have I learned about people who I called friends and even family. I also struggle with that kind of loneliness but the anti depressants have helped.
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