• My husband is becoming very distant since diagnosis. We can't seems to talk about anything at all without arguing. Please any advice?

    Asked by DEB_INDY on Wednesday, June 27, 2012

    My husband is becoming very distant since diagnosis. We can't seems to talk about anything at all without arguing. Please any advice?

    5 Answers from the Community

    5 answers
    • shauna0915's Avatar

      We, as caregivers, tend to catch the brunt of all the anger and aggression meant for the cancer. It's said we tend to hurt the ones we love the most. It doesn't make it right, but it's true in the "cancer world". My dad would get so aggravated with my step-mom over petty things. It could be because his tea was too hot, or not hot enough. Something was too salty or spicy or bland. He would just pop off for no reason at all. In the end, it was because he was scared... and proud. Pride is a dreadful thing when one is fighting cancer. It's harder for men to swallow than women.

      Marty (DavidandMarty) has a good suggestion... go to the health food store and get Rescue Remedy. It will help your nerves and calm him down too.

      You may just have to confront him and flat out tell him that you are hurting too and he's not the only one affected by the cancer. I'm a pretty direct person and I'd tell him to get over himself and quit arguing and yelling every time you try to talk to him. My partner is very similar in that she is unemotional and I'm overly emotional. I need hugs and attention and she wants to be left alone. Sometimes I just have to go off on my own and have my temper tantrum and get my screaming and crying out and come back and deal with her lack of emotion. It doesn't matter if it's my problem or hers, it's always the same... I'm the emotional one and she's stone faced. We've been together over 17 years and it doesn't get any easier. Yes, we've been through the whole serious illness thing... she has sarcoidosis. Now I have a nodule and a couple spots on my lungs and I'm trying not to freak out but I just lost my dad last July 4th to lung cancer, so I'm scared and she doesn't understand why. I talk about it with other people because I know she'll tell me not to worry until there is something to worry about. She doesn't know I cry myself to sleep sometimes because I'm horrified that I may have lung cancer on top of all my other health issues.

      Bottom line is... either tell him to shut up and listen or find another person to talk to about it. And...get the Rescue Remedy. It helps! Good luck!

      almost 9 years ago
    • RuthAnne's Avatar

      I think some distancing is normal. Since my diagnosis, I go back and forth being distant with people and being involved with people. One of the realizations that I had when I knew that I was Stage IV was that, although I had a lot of people on my 'support team', I was alone. I was the one who would suffer the effects of treatment and the disease.

      I did recognize fairly quickly the caregivers have their own brand of suffering and that my cancer affected others but even so , having cancer can make you feel very isolated, like other people who don't have it can't possibly understand (whether it's true or not). And then you withdraw.

      Connecting with other people who actually have cancer helps. If he is willing to either go to a cancer support group or even join this one (or one like it), it might help him cope.

      Best of luck.

      almost 9 years ago
    • Marmalady's Avatar

      I needed to withdraw for awhile in order to assimilate the diagnosis for myself--and my darling husband didn't understand. Then a month later HE was diagnosed with stage 4 prostate cancer--and needed lots of support from me. We got counseling and I think we both understand each other's needs better now.

      over 8 years ago

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