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My only parent (dad) has stage IV lung cancer and I am devastated. Need someone to talk to.

vigilde001
Posts: 5
Joined: Sep 2012

My name is Denise..I'm 30 years old. My dad just got diagnosed with lung cancer on July 25. It has almost been 2 months...some days are good and some days are bad. He completed 14 radiation treatments but no chemo. The oncologist says it would be too toxic for him. He has lost 30 pounds and is now down to 134 an he is 5'9. I just get so worried and want someone to talk to. Anybody?
Thanks!

3Mana
Posts: 829
Joined: Aug 2010

Denise,
I know what it's like to have a parent with cancer. Both of mine had it. My dad had longer to live with it & didn't suffer till the end. But my mom only lived 2 months after she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. We always had hope and so didn't want to think about what could happen. So one thing I will tell you is don't wait to tell your dad how much you love him. Be there to support him and appreciate every day. I regret talking to my mom about that every day. Guess no one wants to face the facts, but talk to him while you can.
Good luck Denise! I also lost my husband 2 & 1/2 years ago and it was very sudden too. He had a very rare side effect from chemo. He knew I loved him so much but again we were shocked when he was diagnosed and never talked about "what if". Carole

vigilde001
Posts: 5
Joined: Sep 2012

Thank you for replying .. first of all :)

I am sorry to hear about your parents and husband. That is awful. I just don't know what I'd do without my dad. I've always wanted to find someone to talk to that have lost both parents or still living with one left. I don't know anyone my age who has lost both parents. So thank you for responding. If you don't mind me asking what were the complications? What was signs of the end?
Thanks,
Denise

jetsfan
Posts: 7
Joined: Sep 2012

Hello, everyone.

My father was just diagnosed with small cell lung cancer; it was earlier today actually. We do not even know what stage it's in but there is a chance it might have already spread to the brain.

Although I found out that there was a cancerous growth in his lungs on Wednesday, the type of cancer was determined today. He hasn't even met with any oncologists yet.

I have to be honest and say that what I've read so far hasn't been very encouraging. It appears that in many cases, the treatments do not cure the cancer.

As you can imagine, this is all very overwhelming. Add to that the fact that my dad is actually overseas and I might have to leave my wife and daughter in the States to go attend to him has added a further complicating factor that many people do not have to worry about.

At any rate, I felt that I needed to share this with people who are either going through it or went through it in the past. I am not really planning on discussing this with most of the people I know. Confiding in complete strangers sometimes makes more sense to me. Plus, the fact that I write for a living means that I'm much more comfortable expressing my feelings in writing that in person.

Perhaps I will discuss this in my next therapy session. :)

Thanks

jetsfan
Posts: 7
Joined: Sep 2012

Hello, everyone.

My father was just diagnosed with small cell lung cancer; it was earlier today actually. We do not even know what stage it's in but there is a chance it might have already spread to the brain.

Although I found out that there was a cancerous growth in his lungs on Wednesday, the type of cancer was determined today. He hasn't even met with any oncologists yet.

I have to be honest and say that what I've read so far hasn't been very encouraging. It appears that in many cases, the treatments do not cure the cancer.

As you can imagine, this is all very overwhelming. Add to that the fact that my dad is actually overseas and I might have to leave my wife and daughter in the States to go attend to him has added a further complicating factor that many people do not have to worry about.

At any rate, I felt that I needed to share this with people who are either going through it or went through it in the past. I am not really planning on discussing this with most of the people I know. Confiding in complete strangers sometimes makes more sense to me. Plus, the fact that I write for a living means that I'm much more comfortable expressing my feelings in writing that in person.

Perhaps I will discuss this in my next therapy session. :)

Thanks

dennycee
Posts: 667
Joined: Mar 2011

Denise,
I lost both parents to cancer as well and am now winning my own battles with adenocarcenoma LC. I was told 23 months ago that I had 10-15 months to live. It would be very beneficial for you to find a caregivers/family support group at your hospital or a Gilda's Club or Cancer Support Network. I found it very helpful to be around others who were fighting the same battle.

Please talk to your dad about either palliative care or hospice care. Either will help with pain, hydration & nutrition which will be the biggest issues. They will help you recognize end of life issues. I hesitate because some of the dehydration issues mimic them. The nurses will come and teach you both new care taking skills.

The difference is that a palliative care plan lets you take meds for things like pneumonia if they arise. With hospice care you cannot start any kind of treatment unless it is to relieve pain. A good hospice program will allow radiation for pain. Hospice will not allow chemo or radiation for cure, palliative does. Palliative allows you to call 911 in an emergency, hospice does not.

I hope this helps.

weirlion's picture
weirlion
Posts: 16
Joined: Sep 2012

Hi Denise, my mother was diagnosed with sclc back in august and she is taking radiation and chemo, we go back the 18th to get her rescanned, I know how you feel about the worry and someone to talk to, I am a 39 year old man that feels like a helpless little kid, I am new to all this as you are, but if you ever need to talk im here maybe we can help each other through this.

sadamy
Posts: 4
Joined: Oct 2012

hi Denise-my mom was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer at the beginning of sept and will begin radiation on monday.
She already had emergency surgery for brain met and now i feel like i got her back. If only i could hide her from cancer. I'm 36 and mom is 60, i have two little kids and always saw her around for their growing up- i'm not done with her yet-if you need to talk i'm here.
amy

KLScoville's picture
KLScoville
Posts: 161
Joined: Mar 2011

Hello Denise,

Almost a year ago this November 14th I lost my husband of 6 years to Lung Cancer. He was dx the day after Superbowl Sunday 2011. Today would mark one year when he became bed bound after a fall. He did not do any chemo either, just radiation treatments to shrink the tumors on his back and in his jaw. I was his main caregiver along with visits from the nurses when he wanted. He was a stubborn man and only wanted me to take care of him.
He had his good days and bad days also. On top of Lung Cancer he was also a diabetic and that was getting out of control. He use to weigh almost 190 but his last visit and weigh in at the cancer center for radiation he weighed in at 128lbs. That was in August of 2011.

I don't know what to tell you except be strong, talk alot, hold hands and just be there! I know it is going to be hard but with the help of Hospice (who were great for me) alot of your questions can be answered.

Take care and thanks for listening
Kelly
wife/widow of Mark Scoville RIP 11/14/2011
Stage IV lung cancer w/ mets

acostane
Posts: 3
Joined: Feb 2013

Hi Denise! I'm Nicki. I'm 29. My Dad was diagnosed the first time in 1999 with Stage 4 lung cancer & he's still here fighting another flare up. I am his primary caregiver and I am terrified and anxious that this will be the last time his body will be able to take a hit of any kind of treatment.

I constantly feel like I am alone in all this, separate from my peers. I feel guilty for dragging my husband through this even though he's been wonderful. I am a wreck sometimes.

But I am always able to remind myself that my Dad was told he had a 14% chance of making it 6 months the first time he was diagnosed. I hadn't even started high school then. He saw me graduate, graduate college, get married and start my life. That makes me SO incredibly happy.

But also I am a Daddy's girl through and through...my Mom is still alive but we have a very tough relationship. She divorced my Dad after he went into remission the first time... in about 2001. I had to do everything for my Dad after that. I have recently decided to reach out more for help and assistance from friends & family including my mother, brother, aunts, uncles and cousins, friends & co-workers even. I got tired of keeping it all inside and not asking anyone for help.

Luckily most people are stepping up and they're happy to assist. It's lightening my burden somewhat although I am devestated at my Dad's recent recurrance because he's very frail and he also made a (dumb) choice to move back to his hometown which is far away from me. :/ So now I'm probably going to have to bring him down here which will be VERY complicated. Oy.

Anyways, so that's my situation. I am one of those people who is very open and I find it very helpful to share human experience. SO many people that went to my HS have had their parents suffer with cancer. My 10 year HS reunion was recent and we reconnected. You are not alone and if you need someone to talk to, please don't hesitate to drop me a line. I guess that's what these forums are for.

Best to everyone out there living with this disease...I sometimes think I won't keep going. But I do. 

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