• Anger

    Asked by SheilaChrisman on Sunday, August 20, 2017


    I am my mother's only living child and whenever she goes on chemotherapy drugs she gets very angry and mean toward me. I don't know how to not feel hurt by this

    16 Answers from the Community

    16 answers
    • barryboomer's Avatar

      Just let it go as she is getting a toxic stew in her veins....Just forgive her.

      10 months ago
    • debsweb18's Avatar

      Could she have any type of dementia? That can make people mean and maybe chemo is aggravating it.

      10 months ago
    • LiveWithCancer's Avatar

      I am so sorry. Sounds like she's taking her frustration at being sick and being sick and tired of being sick out on the person closest to her. That doesn't make it any easier.

      Please try not to take anything hateful that she says to heart. She doesn't mean them. And, I guarantee you that she is very happy you are there for her.

      10 months ago
    • GregP_WN's Avatar

      Being the cancer patient brings out some of the "why me" and "what did I do to deserve this" type of feelings. I know when I was diagnosed for the 3rd time I was mad as XXX, I couldn't stand the fact that everyone around me was living a happy carefree life and here I was probably going to be dead in a year. So, she could have felt like that and she may not be telling you about them. You sort of have to be the punching bag a little bit. We wish her the best, and you strength and patience.

      10 months ago
    • BoiseB's Avatar

      Does your center have any counseling services, You could go to them perhaps they can explain to you why she is taking her anger out on you and what you can do to help her deal with her feelings. Maybe you could get her to talk with a social worker. Our social workers counseled us while we were taking chemo. And if your mother won't see a social worker, maybe she will talk to PCP By all means mention this change in behavior to her Dr.

      10 months ago
    • geekling's Avatar

      She is in a great amount of pain and the body actually knows it is being poisoned.

      It is entirely possible she has no idea how she is treating you.

      My gf had a broken collarbone. One of her daughters came to assist. We were to all meet for supper that evening. Her phone dialed me while her daughter was helping her dress. I listened even though it became immediately apparent that neither my friend nor her daughter were aware of the rogue phone call.

      I had not ever heard my friend speak in such a rude manner. I was shocked. Eventually I had to hang up so I could finish dressing myownself to meet them.

      Somehow dinner conversation came around to mistreating aides. My friend said she would not ever do such a thing and her daughter snorted. I explained how the phone had dialed me and how I had listened and was so shocked.

      My friend turned to her daughter and explained she had had no idea and how sorry she was and everybody got all teary-eyed with hugs and sorries and forgiveness all around.

      Pain does odd things to the best of us. Dont take it so personally and tell your Mom because she may not actually be aware of her being so awful to you. Perhaps both of you speak to the oncologist about upping pain meds for crappy chemo days?

      Best wishes

      10 months ago
    • ChildOfGod4570's Avatar

      Oh, I am so sorry to hear you are going through this. Chemo isn't easy for the patient, nor is it easy for the caregiver. I know when I was on chemo, I had more than my fair share of the adult version of temper tantrums to the point where my best friend said if she didn't know I was a Christian, she would think I wasn't one. I felt ugly, smelly, and like I would never again have the still care free lives my friends and family had. I wondered if I did something wrong to bring cancer upon myself and even thought my hair loss was a punishment from God for mistreating my body. All kinds of things run through a chemo patient's head, and they will give vent to their emotions. Of course that doesn't take from the heartache the caregivers endure. Please call your cancer center to ask if there is some kind of emotional support for both patient and caregiver. If I had a penny for every time I thought and expressed that emotional care is *absolutely* a necessary part of cancer treatment, I would be a very rich person! Please inquire about support groups and/or therapy for both you and her. I hope things go better for you soon. HUGS and God bless.

      10 months ago
    • drehmmsw's Avatar

      As a social worker my thoughts are that she is so scared, and when some of us are scared we get angry. She might also feel that she is going to leave this world and people sometimes unconsciously detach in order to cope. Being scared is sometimes too vulnerable and anger makes us have an illusion of control. If she would see a therapist it would probably help a lot. I'm sorry you are going thru this because it is very painful. As a caregiver, a group or therapist of your own might help. I would be happy to help in any way I can

      10 months ago
    • Jouska's Avatar

      The facility may have a counselor that you can visit with and he/she could help you understand what is going on with your mother. Fear, as noted earlier, probably has a lot to do with it, so can being dependent, not feeling well, etc. Illness can bring out the best and the worst in us and chemo is not fun and the patient doesn't feel well. Please understand that it is not directed at you specifically and I know that it is hard to separate yourself from her anger. Hopefully you can find a counselor who can help you cope with your feelings and how best to respond when this happens. Sending good thoughts to you and your mother.

      10 months ago
    • cards7up's Avatar

      Is she taking steroids? This can make a drastic change in personality where she can become mean. They can lower the dose if this continues to happen. Does she have brain mets? Do you know what chemo she's on? You need to let it go and realize this is not her especially if she didn't act this way before.

      10 months ago
    • ChicagoSandy's Avatar

      Just remember, that’s not your mom talking: it’s the chemo, its side effects, guilt over inability to fully “parent” you, and her very real fear. If you had lost your hair, gained weight (yes, chemo & the steroids they give to ease its side effects causes patients to put on weight), lost your appetite, found foods tasted awful, got mouth sores and nausea, had bone aches & fatigue, and were in danger of life-threatening infection, you’d be pretty cranky too. Not to mention pain from the cancer itself. She’s not angry at you, she’s angry, period—and understandably so. You just happen to be there when she needs to vent.

      10 months ago
    • Ashera's Avatar

      cards7up - may have hit on something. Steroids - very often given before or during the chemo treatment day - can completely change a personality. I experienced this rapid 'meanness' coming on myself - as well as when my son had steroids during his time with chemo. Find out what meds your mom is on - talk with her nurse on chemo day - or arrange to go with her when she has her oncology appt. and take a deep breath. So sorry you are in the line of fire - I know it hurts terribly - and I know you want to walk away in those moments,. and I know you can't and never would. Not an easy role. Sending you positive everything!

      10 months ago
    • Ejourneys' Avatar

      Like others here, I wonder if it might be the steroids -- otherwise known as 'roid rage.

      In addition to being a cancer patient, I'm caregiver to my partner, who has MS. Sometimes she lashes out at me. Over the years I have trained myself to not take it personally, to the best of my ability (some days I'm more successful than others). I tell myself it's the disease talking. Detachment is very hard to do, but it can be done. It does not mean that you care any less; it is a form of self-preservation. Being able to detach means I have more energy for caregiving. It also helps to defuse my partner's anger, so it helps both of us. I don't do anything to fuel her rant, so she gets it out of her system more quickly. Wishing you and your mom all the best.

      10 months ago
    • Schampion's Avatar

      After I started chemo, I thought I would never make it through the treatments. I was depressed and felt conflicted. I just wanted to be left alone. I didn't want the attention of people trying to be nice. I think my family thought I was being mean by not being sociable. But in my mind they needed to get used to not having me around. My chemo made me so sick it was better to be alone. So don't think she is being mean to you, she is probably just trying to cope with her illness. If possible talk to her and see what she needs and give her some space. She will tell you when she needs something.

      10 months ago
    • Melp's Avatar

      Try not to let it hurt your feelings. Remember that it is a side effect to the treatment she is getting. My mom passed away from cancer in Feb 2016. I lost the last 8 months of her life because I got mad at her over her being so ornery. I didn't understand it was a side effect. She wouldn't talk to me until one week before she died. Now I have breast cancer and I understand the mood swings, the anger and guess what? My mom isn't around for me to hug and tell her I understand why she felt the way she did. Please don't risk your relationship with your mom. Understand she is NOT herself right now

      10 months ago
    • Razmataz's Avatar

      OK, TRY HARD not to take it personally. My first series of chemo's and the beginning of this series I have to admit...I was grumpy to say the least. My son and I would have these explosions which I couldn't understand til later. At the beginning of this series, I did not want to go back to that conflict with my son and asked myself what it was causing my frustration and anger. It DEFINITELY was NOT my son, he was just being who he was. It was me, I had pushed so many feelings out of my life and I tend to have a high pain tolerance. However, my body was still feeling the pain and I only had enough energy and patience to deal with it. So whenever my son would ask something or do something the least bit irritating I would go off. He took it personally and came back at me. It was ugly. So being personally aware and taking pain meds this time really helped me. I also tried to share my feelings of being afraid or insecure with my son and reassured him it was me NOT him... Hope this helps

      10 months ago

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