• How am I supposed to react?

    Asked by Susan on Tuesday, October 11, 2011

    How am I supposed to react?

    How am I supposed to react to my father being diagnosed with colon cancer and my fiancee being diagnosed with testicular cancer? I am trying to be strong for the two of them but when is the right time to cry and be angry? How am I supposed to feel after being told that my fiancee and I will never have biological children? How am I going to pay for this? I have so many question but no one seems to be able to answer me.

    7 Answers from the Community

    7 answers
    • GregP_WN's Avatar

      It is a hard time, for sure. I have been diagnosed 3 times, the last was over 2 years ago during Christmas. I was mad, depressed, all sorts of feelings I didn't have the first two times. Finally I did what I did the first two times, I just kept a positive attitude and went about the business of getting the treatment over with and fighting. Then my Father died from a long running prostate cancer, just as we took care of him, my mother was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer. We lost her 10 months later. Just think about the positives in the situation. Your fiance is still here to be with you, no children yes, but you can still be together. Your father's diagnoses is unfortunate, it sucks, but it could be worse. My Father also had a bout with colon cancer, but it was taken care of fairly easy, compared to his other treatments. Look at the positives in every situation. If you dwell on the why me's, and how awful it is, it will drive you nuts!
      Good luck to both of them, and to you, I wish you all the best. Look up your local Relay for LIfe chapter, there are lots of survivors there to talk to.

      over 8 years ago
    • mspinkladybug's Avatar

      well sounds to me like u r reacting. there is no right or wrong way to react what u r feeling is normal i would suggest putting your feelings on paper then u can figure things out better and know what questions to ask.

      over 8 years ago
    • CherylHutch's Avatar

      Susan... what a tough platter of problems you have been handled. The reason you can't get any one answer is because there is no one answer. How a person reacts is truly unique... everyone has different reactions. If I said "Dump the fiance and tell your father he's on his own" you would be shocked and want to hunt me down with a big gun ;) And yes, I did say that to throw a little shock into the equation because obviously none of us wants anymore shock than what you are currently going through.

      Let's start with your fiance, since I'm female, that is one cancer I will not come down with. Has he just been diagnosed and hasn't started treatment yet? Discuss with him (if you haven't already) about the desire to have children so before he starts his treatment what are the possibilities where you live of having his sperm frozen until such a time as the two of you want to start a family. I don't know all the ins and outs of this and right now is not the time to be worrying about whether you can or can't afford those procedures down the road... but just look at having the sperm frozen and then tackle the actual how and when down the road when the time comes. If he has already started treatment an that is not an option, then fine, onto the next potential solution. Building a family is one of the biggest joys a couple can do together... and there are many, many babies out there, in North America as well as throughout the world that need loving, caring, responsible parents. I know it's an individual thing, but seriously, who cares if the child is made by a particular sperm and a particular egg? Once the adoption goes through, that baby/child is every bit as legally yours as if you gave birth to them yourself. They will carry on the family history, with a bit of history of their own.

      When it comes to having children, there are so many options that will be open to you and you both will be every bit as in love with any child that comes into your life, no matter what path they took to get there. But right now, that is not what the focus is on... the focus is on getting him through the treatments with your love and support and then while he's resting up and you two have quiet moments together, you can dream of how you want your future to be together. The sky is the limit!!

      Now, as for your father... something I'm more familiar with because I, too, have colon cancer. I was diagnosed with Stage III back in December 2006. Within the year they found it had spread to my right adrenal gland and my lungs. Bummer. With the spread, that made me a Stage IV, the last of the staging for Colon Cancer. I had a choice... I could seriously believe that I was going to be spending the last months of my life "dying from cancer" or I could choose to live the rest of my long life "living with cancer". There is no cure once you have Stage IV. When people hear that they automatically think "no possible cure = death sentence", but that is not true. No possible cure means, there is no cure known to mankind to get rid of this stage 4 cancer.

      So, yes, it means doctors appts, scan appts, treatment appts and the procedures are all done over and over again. I can come up with better things to do in my life that are more enjoyable, but this is what it is. If someone is diagnosed with diabetes, they don't automatically live their life as if they are going to die... they learn about the treatments, the insulin shots, whatever it is they have to do to manage their diabetes... and then they get on with their life. That has been my choice too when it comes to cancer. This December it will be 5 years that I've been living with cancer... and I have a whole bunch more steam left in me to live for a whole bunch more years. It's those bus drivers out there that I fear... I don't want to end my life getting hit by a bus ;)

      So, take a deep breath or ten. What you are going through is very very tough! What your fiance and your father is going through is very, very tough... but both are alive and if both have the will to live and enjoy their lives, then THAT is the attitude they should have and your attitude with regards to your life should mirror exactly how you want to live your life :) Whenever you come up against a very high wall that is impossible to get over... then keep walking. Sooner or later you will find a way under, over or through :)''Cheryl from Vancouver

      over 8 years ago
    • lovekitties' Avatar

      Dear Susan, you ask how you are supposed to react. I would say with disbelief, grief and fear times 2. That being said, I would hope that you could find a grief counselor who has dealt with cancer patients and their families. You need the extra support so that you can be there for your 2 fellas. Don't dwell on the distant future, but on the here and now. I would hope that your future husband's diagnosis does not impact your feelings for him. He will have his own emotional issues regarding his 'manliness'. Having your support and love will go a long way to helping. Hope for best results for all.

      over 8 years ago
    • PastorDavis' Avatar

      As a survivor of testicular cancer I can tell you that anytime is a good time to cry. The questions you need to ask yourself are, "Why am I crying and who am I crying for?" It has been my experience that the people around me were worse off than I was and I was going through all the surgeries and the chemo. Your fiance will know if this is going to do him in, just ask him. If he says, "I don't know." then he probably doesn't want to tell you the truth. That is a toss up. As for not having biological children, well, for my wife of 18 years and I, that was probably a blessing in disguise. I am the pastor of a church now and our kids probably would have been a hindrance to our ministry. Preacher's kids tend to be more rebellious than other kids. I know that adopting isn't the same as having your own children but there are plenty of kids out there whose parents don't want them. Those children need love too. Should we ever get ahead financially, we hope to become foster parents and, someday, adopt.

      As for your Dad, the only thing I can say about his colon cancer is, is he saved? Does he know that Heaven will be his eternal home? If not, here is a link to our church website that will show both you and your family how they can be assured that Heaven will be their final home. http://www.bethelbaptistoflovelock.com/index.php?p=1_4_Are-You-Going-To-Heaven

      I am here to answer any more questions that you may have. Have a blessed day!

      over 7 years ago
    • CharlieM1126's Avatar

      To chime in on your question about how you're supposed to feel about never having biological children, I can tell you unless there are other physcial reasons for not being able to have children, testicular cancer may not automatically rule out the ability to have children. Many, many testicular cancer survivors go on to father children. We were told almost certain sterility after testicle removal and chemotherapy and were actually pregnant less than 4 years after diagnosis. I have read of many of families with testicular cancer survivors who have had children. It can and does happen, the odds are actually in your favor to have biological children so please don't rule that out due to the initial diagnosis.

      over 7 years ago
    • Crash's Avatar

      Well, of course you'll be supportive of your Dad and his efforts. I can't say too much to that, but you know what will help your husband feel better?

      The next time you find yourself standing beside him with any other adult, say to them, " I'm so glad he had that testicle removed, he was much too much of a man for me with both of them! At least now he'll let me sleep in some mornings."

      He'll love you even more for that. ;-)

      Try to not worry too much about not having kids. God knows what he's doing. If you adopt make sure you get a newborn.

      You'll pay for it. Don't worry about the debt. Bankruptcy beats death.

      It's a beautiful day here. How will you handle all of this? Find something beautiful and appreciate it.

      Chin up!

      over 7 years ago

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