I (33 F) been dating with my boyfriend (37 M) for about 11 years now. I went went to last ER Thursday due to sharp pain in my breast. Came to find a large tumor eating away the muscles. I had a mammogram and biopsy done on Tuesday. Results should come in on Monday. We are expecting some sort of cancer. It may have spread to the liver. But lessons are so small it was difficult for the CT scan to pick up, it may be fatty disposition too. So we are not certain. Obvious I am really, really scared.
My boyfriend was with me the whole way. His stepmom is a nurse and explain the CT results with me and what it means. We were saving the money for a house but it’s obvious going to change. He helped me with pain management and was my rock. I thank him so much but it broke my heart seeing him cry as we saw the ct scan.
I want to make sure he’s okay. I know I am the one with the disease, but I want to make sure he’s okay too. Advice?
Update: thank you everybody. My biopsy report came in. It’s Invasive Ductal Carcinoma (IDC) breast cancer. I start treatment next week.
Show him your gratitude. A l ot of the stress on caregivers comes from unappreciative patients or in some cases, unappreciative family members.
I hope your diagnosis turns out good.
Just let him comfort you without restraint. Chances are you’ll get the chance to return everything later. Let him do for you what you’d do for him.
He is a good man and loves you deeply.
Give him things to do to help you. Chores..going for walks extra hugs…
Help him feel needed in your battle…
Let him talk
And you talk..
It will help you both
Also get going on green tea meditation together laughter.
Cancer centers will tell you the same .
Heal the mind soul and body together.
Times you will feel over welmed..you will cry and feel lost. The medication is rough..
Eat healthy really healthy..green veggies if meat chicken turkey.. no fats or very little fats no peanut butter or nuts.. no alcohol tons of water.
Keep us updated if you can.
My advice is that you are not going to be the best person to provide support to him for providing support to you. It will be important for him to have someone in his life that he can lean on who isn’t going through a serious health issue.
When you speak to your healthcare providers ask if there are any resources to help him, there may be a counselling service or similar.
I hope you get through this ok OP.
My 22YO daughter was just diagnosed with Triple Positive Invasive Ductal Carcinoma. I’ve learned a lot over the last few weeks. What I learned the most was how advanced the treatments have become. So first, in answer to your question, you don’t need to think about your BF. He sounds like your rock. Let him be that for you. He wants to take care of you and that’s his service mission right now. And it’s OK and you should not try to take that from him. He needs to be useful and helpful. Let him take care of you.
And just in general, stay positive. Treatments have improved. If you have HER2+, the immunotherapy is so much more effective than just chemo. Whether you are religious or not, you are in my prayers and you will get through this.
Oh! And get married. Seriously. For insurance, inheritance, and etc. reasons.
Be open with him about how you’re feeling. Let him be open with you. Cry together. Be scared together. Lean on him when you need to, and let him be there for you. Encourage him to lean on his family and friends.
I deal with some health issues that require my wife to help me with a few things. Not constantly, but 1 or 2 things a day – and some days are bad days where my physical health requires me to get lots of support from her.
She gets thank yous and appreciation for *everything* she does – every meal, etc. Regularly, I ask her how she is doing, and if I can help in something she needs, you bet that I try to do it. Do I get grumpy at times? Yes. And then, I make sure she knows I am sorry if I’ve been grumpy that day.
The other thing is – and this is important – I honestly tell her if I am having a “good day” or “bad day” and on the “good days” I do all I can to help.
Now, what you can and cannot do may change over time. You may get to a point where you can’t do much at all – except whisper thank you. Still, if you can, whisper thank you.
First, I’m jingling (a horse person thing) for good news.
Next, I’m glad your partner and his mom are supportive.
I think you just need to do a check in with him. Something like “babe, I love you and appreciate all you’re doing. Im pretty freaked out and I can imagine you are too. Is there anything i can do to comfort you?”
When I read the title I got scared, but your boyfriend’s a keeper.
Make sure to support each other, while you’re the one who’s sick, considering how you’ve been together for so long he’s probably terrified. Support each other and talk.
Not going to lie, it will be hard on him, but he’ll be fine because he loves you. As a nurse, and one intimately familiar with breast cancer, I’ll say this. DO NOT let some MD, friend, nor family member talk you into lumpectomy or minimal surgery. Total Mastectomy, only. Cancer will, and does come back. DO NOT give it a place to camp out. Be strong, be vulnerable, and be loved.
I’m sorry for the diagnosis. I definitely recommend occasionally doing check ins with him. Make sure that he’s not neglecting self-care once you start treatment.
It sounds like he’s the type of person who will want to stay informed. At my hospital and where I did my residency we engaged patients to bring someone with them throughout the process. Prior to treatment we do a comprehensive education session with the care team. So social worker if needed, pharmacist, oncologist, etc and having someone there helps.
as a long time chronically ill person whose father has had a lot of run-ins with cancer, I think the *biggest thing* for a relationship ‘bump’ (mountain) like this is having and maintaining as *healthy* boundaries as possible.
keeping communication open—as a few people have said, communicating honestly about what kind of day it is, and how your symptoms are going is important (though honestly sometimes it can be really hard when you don’t know how bad pain can get till you get there and it often can be difficult knowing how much you are going to be able to do until you’re crying on the floor because a simple every day task exhausted you so much you need help to get back to bed, but…being as honest as you can, and also being honest about the difficulties of a shifting rubric is a good thing. if you are having a lot of brain fog, admit that. if you’re dizzy, admit that.
it’s like…really hard to be that honest a lot of the time. we’re taught to hide our pain and fake it till we make it with our ability to do things but your loved ones *want* to help you and they can’t if you don’t tell them, or allow them in.)
but having good boundaries, him knowing to look outward for support in support groups, and family members, friends, and therapists, and you doing the same so it’s not just the two of you all the time is really important. cancer is huge and emotionally very brutal, and you’re both going to have to face up to some ugly shit on the way through, so not just stewing in all of that pain and ugliness together, but both of you getting the help you need is important. like obviously there will need to be conversations where you are supporting one another, and talking about the shit as you process, (like you don’t want to be freezing one another out either) but i’m saying that if it’s just the two of you against it all, it’s going to be unhealthy for both of you x
hope this makes sense, I’m having a bit of a scattered brain day. I just feel like this is a big part of it
mostly I wish you well x sensing you good *fuck cancer* vibes, and hoping your relationship only gets better from here
I am so sorry you have cancer. I’m glad you went in and they found it. I hope treatment can get rid of the cancer. Of course he cried, he loves you. (Hugs) I’m glad you have each other, and I’m sending best wishes for treatment and a good recovery. (Hugs)
I would highly recomend therepy for him.
Hospital or clinic should have support groups for caregivers, or for you and then you can ask those groups. Gilda’s Club was a big one near me for example.
You’re so sweet. I’m so glad you have a good support system. I hope everything goes well with treatment and you kick cancers ass. You got this!! <3
Hi OP, I’m going through the same right now. And like yours, my partner has been amazing. One thing I noted is that he never shares his fears or worries with me – it was always me dumping mine on him. It was only when I explicitly ask him “How are you feeling?” That he shares with me. So you may need to intentionally make space for your partner to share with you. (If that’s what you want – you may only be able to handle one-way sharing which is also extremely OK at this time! You ars priority #1 right now!)
Best of luck to you, DCIS is treatable and you WILL get through this. Sending good vibes
God bless you; it will seem hard at times but hang in there because there is light at the end of the tunnel trust me. May wife (of 44 years) has three more treatments of radiation therapy for stage two breast cancer. Don’t be afraid to lean on your loved ones their support and love will care you through. May God bless you and bless you with a speedy recovery.
Using google (amazing medical resource I know) the survival rates seem to be generally optimistic, are you primarily concerned with the stress of treatment, or the worst case scenario? Even if you’re not preparing to die, I can see why this would be very traumatic. If he doesn’t regularly go to therapy, this would be a great time to start.
I wouldn’t know how to approach this, and obviously you have your own feelings to deal with too. Just be there for each other, be open, and do the fun things in life that you want to do. Therapy might give you the best resources emotionally
So sorry for the tough diagnosis honey. I am glad you aren’t facing this alone. It’s going to be hard and your energy level and even enthusiasm might change so whenever possible remind him of how grateful you are to have him and for what he does for you. Love him and let him love you.
If and when you can, do little things for him but don’t force yourself, your treatment and recovery are priority.
There will be plenty of time to earn money again and save for your future home, don’t worry about any of that right now. Sending you love and light and a big hug.
He’s a rare one. Congratulations! I’ve seen so many partners/spouses bail at the word “cancer”. Love him, cherish him, and make sure he has support in supporting you.
My prayers are with you for a speedy recovery and for your boyfriend to have the strength to help you through this.
I am very sorry. Fuck cancer
Good luck, stay strong and with your partner besides you, you will beat it.
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