Some people not wanting to develop a friendship with a cancer survivor

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Re: Some people not wanting to develop a friendship with a ...

Hi all, I really would like to rant if that's ok... Since my cancer, I have struggled no end with my life. I have watched my peers proceed and succeed in their careers and social experiences and relationships. Many of them have bought their houses and are having families. While watching from the outside, I've mainly put on a brave face, rarely talked about my illness or, more relevantly, the emotional scars of watching my life disintegrate. Two years ago I fell in love and seemed like all was going to get on track, then the relationship degenerated to emotional and mental abuse, and then violence (not from me). I am now again in a situation where I am on the verge of homelessness and I am shattered mentally and emotionally from the cycle of instability and isolation. Stemming from the relationship has been a loss of long term friends due to horrible lies and abuse from my relationship. I have just off the phone to one friend who has basically told me that, she feels powerless to help, and that honestly, she finds me and my life a "downer". She says that she hates that I am in this situation and wishes she could do something but knows that she cannot. She said also that I am just not exciting to be with anymore and it's pushing her away. I have known this woman for 15 years, never ever once discussed with her the gory details of my illness, or the pain and grief that have gone with it, probably because I was afraid of exactly this. She says that she finds that she just doesn't want to catch up with me these days as she finds my life too heavy. I say, well, imagine how it is for me(!). I think to myself, it's not like I want to be here; that I want to go to hospital and be poked and prodded several times a year. I say, well, it seems like you are seeking to catch up with me to get something from me and if it's not 'exciting' for you, well I'm sorry. I added that, it wasn't very 'exciting' for me to catch up with a friend recently for coffee (who died last weekend), but I did it for her, I'm not sure what this friendship is based on. My life isn't always rosy and exciting I'm sorry, as a consequence of what I've been through, life sometimes is a bit heavy. I am confused and despairing. I don't know what to do anymore, it seems I am only able to have friendships if I hide the majority of my life and who I am away from people. I just don't feel that I can, or want to do that anymore. It seems people that are sick or troubled need to be hidden from society. Though, I don't see much value in their lives either - shopping, talking of things that are - in the broad scheme of things - inconsequential and transient. I don't know where I belong anymore. It's not as though I whinge about my illness 24/7, I am just going through a very hard patch at the moment from grief and reoccurring trauma. It serves only to re-traumatise me by pushing me away. I've even had that it's my fault, and that I am a victim, and a broken record. Whereas, it is just not the case. My head just spins and spins.
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Hi Sarah, I understand how you feel. I too have been in an emotional and abusive relationship, but when I was younger and I was healthy. I'm sorry your "friend" would be so insensitive. She is not thinking "how would these words affect me if spoken"...she is a sleeping soul Sarah. One phrase that i have learn't since my cancer, about friends, family and work people is; "It is none of my business, what you think about me". This has helped me greatly when words and voices are constantly running through my mind and I cant shut them.... Also, i use the phrase; "Friends for a season, Friends for a reason and Friends for a life time" Have you contacted life line or cancer council for counseling and a reasonable solution regarding homelessness Sarah, they do help. I dont know if this helps at all, but keep blogging it out, write it down and keep seeking support anywhere and everywhere Sarah. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Take care. Jules
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Hi Jules, funny, was just laughing with a friend on the phone now about how these days it is an often occurrence that, when asked how you are and you do not reply in the utmost positive, the next question inevitably is: maybe you should see a counselor or go on anti depressants. As if I haven't seen a gazillion counselors over my life. There is no help for homelessness either, unless of course I want to have all my stuff placed in storage, and live in a temporary shelter. And if I don't want to do that, then I am considered just not desperate enough. There is no help as far as I have learned and many times over in fact. As I told red kite recently: where does all the "raising money for cancer" go if not to the people who need it? It's a farce and a rort. Why can we not simply discuss the state of a situation, explore empathetic exchanges, ideas for solutions, and possibly too have a laugh along the way, without being swiftly hot-potatoed to some impersonal conveyor-belt, government-processed nonsense. What about community? Seriously, if one more person suggests counseling to me, and within that the suggestion the implication that I may not have thought about it, I'm just gonna... well.. I'm just gonna... well I'm.. well, I'll probably just turn away from them politely 🙂 Ps, wanted to add, I sent an email to lance Armstrong recently requesting help. His people told me to get counseling.
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My point is, as well is the subject of this thread, I just needed a friend. Some people just don't want to know about it because it's too heavy. may I add also, I am grateful that this friend was honest with me. There is often a sense that, people - friends, are distancing themselves but they don't tell you, and would most likely deny it if one was to ask. I have noticed also, if it is mentioned to others, it's like they imply that you are paranoid that you may feel this way. So, what I have got from this (finally), is that it is so that people will distance themselves. In summary: they just aren't in the same world, so they don't want to know about it as it doesn't relate to their world.
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Re: Some people not wanting to develop a friendship with a ...

It is their loss. Everyone will experience cancer in some form in their family unless they are a rarity. Someday they'll be wishing they had been your friend even for the experience of how the hell do you do it. I have lost friends, made new friends and those that are important stay in touch and we reciprocate contact. Others i have felt like I have had to work and work at keeping the relationship alive and quite frankly that takes too much energy. There are good people that deserve your time. Don't waste your time with the others.
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Re: Some people not wanting to develop a friendship with a ...

i feel this way to.. since my boyfriends diagnosis around a year a nd a couple of months ago i have lost numerous friends along the way.. nobody bothers to ring or see how i am or invite me out.. its like they cant be bothered with my sadness or bad news, the only time they want to be around me is when im happy or ready for a night out... which isnt often... its been so hard
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Yep, there are certain people that just don't want to deal with someone and loss or sadness. I'm not sure if it is because they don't know what to say but I always tell those that have kept in touch that I'd sooner you be talking then not saying anything at all. The worst thing that drives me mad is when people duck out of the way. I went to work after surgery and one of my colleagues couldn't have been more obvious ducking into another room so she wouldn't have to talk to me. I wanted to shout down the hall, "I'm not contagious!!!" I also hear you on the 'night out' thing. People tell me that's what I need. Ha! A night out, sure, can't drink because it makes me feel nauseous. I feel like people are staring at me because I live in a small town and am not back to work yet. The noise, it all clutters my brain. I find my most comforting outting is to mass or just to the church to light some candles and sit in silence and pray. There are people at church that always seem so welcome my conversation too. Also I do have a couple very very very special friends that make up for those lost. Are you involved in a church? I would like to be your friend and listen to your sadness. I might not know what to say but I'll always listen.
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Re: Some people not wanting to develop a friendship with a ...

thank you survivorsays... i appriciate it. Not having a lot of people to surround you at hard times is infact very hard... no im not involved in a church. I have one good friend who is a nurse, so she understands, but the rest dont.. we're in our early twenties so i guess everyone is to busy partying and making plans... 😞
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Re: Some people not wanting to develop a friendship with a ...

I think that friendships can change anyway. I can imagine at your age they are sometimes vased om having fun together so some people may be less willing to be involved in your life. The ones you keep through this are real friends. Value them. Some that you lose or see less of may just not be strong enough to handle heavy stuff like cancer . Just a few more thoughts I had.
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Re: Some people not wanting to develop a friendship with a ...

maddie86 This totally sucks especially when you are in your 20's. I try to believe that God has us on a 'need to know' basis and someday this will all make sense but little consolation when you are in your 20's. The partying may seem like a loss but what you are going through is a much deeper experience. So sad for you still. I know what you mean about people are making plans. At our age many of our friends are busy planning hot holidays and upgrading cars, houses, saving for their kid's education, etc. We are having to settle with what we have and just get by and our kids may have to put themselves through school as we've exhausted our savings, but I do know that in the big picture it is the little things that count. And we'll get by. Some people just don't get it and won't until life experience slaps them in the face like it did for me. Some people don't get it even after that. Compassion is never a given is it? Take care.
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