• I need support for myself as the spouse. I am having a very hard time dealing with this diagnosis

    Asked by denfoxo on Tuesday, January 29, 2013

    I need support for myself as the spouse. I am having a very hard time dealing with this diagnosis

    9 Answers from the Community

    9 answers
    • ticklingcancer's Avatar

      Being a caregiver is no easy task, that's for sure. Although you need to be there for your partner, you also have to remember to take time for yourself. Let friends and other family members help when ever they can. This will help to take some of the stress off of you. Remember that now more than ever, your spouse will you need you to be there and be strong. Might not hurt to talk to a counselor if it gets too tough.

      over 7 years ago
    • RachaelC@StF's Avatar
      RachaelC@StF Community Outreach Coordinator 317-528-7794

      Hi denfoxo,
      I am sorry to hear you are having a difficult time. You've come to the right place- there are plenty of caregivers on this site who are always willing to be an extra arm of your support system.
      I googled your area's zip code and plugged it into the American Cancer Society's website to see what they have to offer in your area as far as In-person support groups and/or telephone support groups. The following web address is what I found. You can scroll through to see which option is right for you, and closest to you:


      I hope this helps! Let us know if you need anything else.

      over 7 years ago
    • SueRae1's Avatar

      Hugs and prayers. Being a caregiver is one of the hardest jobs in the world, harder then being the patient, I know because my sisters and I were caregivers to my parents in the last few years of their lives. Do you have family and friends so you can create a support network for both your and your spouse. My DH is really lucky that my family (adult daughter; sisters, brothers-in-Law, and their adult children) as well as friends that help.

      You may also want to ask the oncologist if she/he can recommend a therapist that specializes in treating caregivers especially those of cancer patients.

      I see you live in Bronxville, a hop, skip, and a jump from NYC, which has many support groups for both caregivers and cancer survivors. Two that come to mind care "Friends in Deed' and "Gilda's Club".

      I don't where your spouse is being treated, but I am assuming it is here in NYC - most cancer centers offer support groups, etc check to see what's being offered at your spouse is being treated.

      over 7 years ago
    • IKickedIt's Avatar

      My husband had a very difficult time being my caregiver, working full-time and taking care of our kids. Physically, he managed, but emotionally, he was drained. I was worried most about him. I kept telling him (and our kids) that I was being well taken care of by my doctors. He had to take care of himself, which he did physically, but not psychologically. So, I had to take care of that, too. You will need time for you. Just like with a newborn, the situation will be overwhelming both physically and emotionally, but you need to be rested and refreshed in order to handle the situation successfully. Remember that. Surround yourself with those who you feel will be helpful for you. Either friends who have gone through what you are going through, a support group (check local hospitals).

      Get organized. Keep a notebook of those who volunteer to cook, clean, shop or drive to doctor's appointments and arrange that help in advance so you do not feel like you have to do everything yourself.

      Communicate. It's a team effort. Some people want to have their hand held when they don't feel well. Personally, I wanted to be alone. I didn't want my husband to be at every chemo treatment (he actually told me I had to reserve the last one for him). I didn't want to put him out and I could go by myself. But unless I told him, he would have wanted to be at every one. It's a long journey that you are going to be in together. Sure, it's not going to be the most enjoyable, but the goal is to get through this together, helping each other over every bump and through every valley. Just like life. It's an unfortunate journey, but one that will make you more compassionate, appreciative and loving people.

      over 7 years ago
    • GregP_WN's Avatar

      Do you need anything specific we can help you with? Just ask, there are lots of great people here that will be happy to help.

      over 7 years ago
    • Lirasgirl33's Avatar

      Denfoxo, please know that we are all here for you. You are not alone in this. Feel free to vent or ask any questions you might have, not just about treatment but also about emotions. Cancer is a physical and mental rollercoaster. We are more than happy to help and support you through this. Sending you and your spouse hugs.

      over 7 years ago
    • SMT4's Avatar

      You are a hero in yourself for being a caregiver!!!!
      But you also need a break and support to carry you through as many have said there is are great locations that can help. I was going to say even within the hospital if they don't have specific couseling services ask the case manager or social worker in charge of your husbands care if they have services around the area they could recommend. Most hospitals do have support groups but one thing I know for sure is they have social workers which it is their job to help provide not only the patient but family with resources.

      Cancer Care is a Free Resources:


      over 7 years ago
    • Shoeless' Avatar

      As everyone else has said, you have to step back and take a break occasionally to preserve your own sanity. Don't be afraid to ask family members to help out sometimes. I was my daughter's caregiver when she was battling AML as well as working full time. It certainly wasn't easy, but the only thing I would change about it if I could, is she would never have gotten sick in the first place. Taking care of her was hard but worth it.

      over 7 years ago
    • Carol-Charlie's Avatar

      I remember the hardest, most painful part of having cancer and treatments... The time I felt helpless was when I awoke to my husband in the LR crying. It was right after diagnosis. (I do however treasure the memory of the love that prompted that.)... We had two years of chemo.. being tired, me being less than 'susie sunshine'. Together we made it through each high and low. I was 62 when diagnosed, he was 64.... I had Stage IV Ovarian Cancer. After surgery and chemo... I have been cancer free and remain so. That was 7 years ago... In may I turn 70... Wow... Still Cancer Free. We each have a strong faith in God. He pulled us through.

      over 7 years ago

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