Vent

helen e
helen e Member Posts: 223
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
Last night my husband (who lost his job a week before my mastectomy and his mother 3 weeks before my cancer diagnosis) asked me when I'm going to be healed. I had my mast. & tram flap on 12/11, still not back at work. He is very depressed and told me that he needs me to start taking care of him - huh? He has not done a single load of laundry in months. I had to bring in wood to start the fire in the woodstove this morning. He has done nothing but sit on his butt and complain about his back hurting him (too much sitting around). Day in and day out I hear his snide remarks about anything and everything the kids or I say. He could be verbally abusive before but now I just don't want to be around him. Everything is negative, negative, negative. I need to hear positive things. I have never once complained about having breast cancer. Never even cried. Just pulled up my boots (so to speak) and got on to the business of ridding my body of the demon. No crying, no whining, no moaning or feeling sorry for myself. I guess I just need a break from my life to be able to deal with my life - my new life. Can someone tell me when I'll be healed? I now know that I'm cancer free - they got it all in the mastectomy, but when will I be healed?

Comments

  • RE
    RE Member Posts: 4,591 Member
    Healed.....
    Well I am not sure how to answer this one. I have had cancer three times and know that I am in remission. I consider myself in decent health but not healed. I will never be the person I was before cancer invaded my body although it had invaded my life when I was 16 and my mom was dx with breast cancer. I am amazed that you have not cried as I have shed many a tear over the frustration of this darned disease. I can tell you that being in remission to me is similar to being healed as I do live a full life and enjoy being with my loved ones. Cancer changes us both physically and mentally, we just see things differently than we did previously. I can still do some of the stuff I did prior to cancer but certainly not everything, I have limitations and always will. Cancer treatment and surgeries have caused lymphedema and spasms which you may have as well. Your husband may not understand that it most likely will not return to how it was, perhaps he should speak with someone about his rush to have you "healed". I hope you do not overdo as that certainly is not good for you either, the surgery you mentioned is a rough one and I am amazed that you are doing the stuff you are. Please take care of yourself, he is not sick nor is he fighting a life threatening illness, he can care for himself.

    Hugs,

    RE
  • jbug
    jbug Member Posts: 285
    Helen
    I'm so sorry you are going through this. We need our families so much to fight the beast and to feel like you haven't been supported at all must be so frustrating! It does sound like your husband entered into his own crisis before your diagnosis and can't see the forrest for the trees! The loss of a job for a man can make them feel very unmanly...raised to believe that their job is to be the breadwinner...of course, times are different in lots of families, but still. That coupled w/the loss of his mother...wow. Then, his wife is diagnosed w/bc and it sounds like he just checked out. Is it fair, no my sister, it isn't!

    You are cancer, you are healed from the beast! Your body and mind still need a bit more time. You had a big procedure done and it simply takes time. I know feeling like you are in the battle alone in your home does not help.

    It does sound like your husband is depressed and may need treatment. I know you didn't write the post for him, but he can't help you until he's been helped. It does seem that women just end up taking it all and moving forward. Praying peace of mind for you and healing for your body/spirit.

    God Bless...
    Julie
  • lanie940
    lanie940 Member Posts: 490
    What a big baby your husband
    What a big baby your husband is! My husband did laundry and cooked meals while I wasn't up to par. Now that was after my hernia surgery. AND all of my 3 times in the hospital! Now, my breast cancer was a piece of cake compared to the hernia and all that followed. He would carry the laundry baskets down for me and I'd separate and do the laundry when I at least felt up to that. One of us would cook, the other clean up dishes while I wasn't up to par. GEEZ, your husband needs a kick square in his backarse!
  • Ritzy
    Ritzy Member Posts: 4,381 Member
    lanie940 said:

    What a big baby your husband
    What a big baby your husband is! My husband did laundry and cooked meals while I wasn't up to par. Now that was after my hernia surgery. AND all of my 3 times in the hospital! Now, my breast cancer was a piece of cake compared to the hernia and all that followed. He would carry the laundry baskets down for me and I'd separate and do the laundry when I at least felt up to that. One of us would cook, the other clean up dishes while I wasn't up to par. GEEZ, your husband needs a kick square in his backarse!

    So sorry
    Helen, your husband should be thinking of YOU and not of himself. That just isn't right. Have you had a sit down with him and explained some of what you are going thru, mentally and physically? He needs to see that you come first now and for awhile yet. If it is really bad, you might want to seek counseling. My hubby has been a saint to me and I appreciate it and show him and tell him every day. I have never heard him complain once about anything and he is always asking what else he can do for me. That is the way it should be. Please try talking to him and see if that goes anywhere. If it doesn't, kick him in the arse like Lanie said. Good luck with this and let us know how it goes.

    Sue :)
  • New Flower
    New Flower Member Posts: 4,294
    Ritzy said:

    So sorry
    Helen, your husband should be thinking of YOU and not of himself. That just isn't right. Have you had a sit down with him and explained some of what you are going thru, mentally and physically? He needs to see that you come first now and for awhile yet. If it is really bad, you might want to seek counseling. My hubby has been a saint to me and I appreciate it and show him and tell him every day. I have never heard him complain once about anything and he is always asking what else he can do for me. That is the way it should be. Please try talking to him and see if that goes anywhere. If it doesn't, kick him in the arse like Lanie said. Good luck with this and let us know how it goes.

    Sue :)

    Helen sorry
    for what is going on. You do need to take care of yourself physically and mentally. I am sure your plastic surgeon would oppose you taking wood or any other heavy stuff. No matter what your husband does or doesn't you need to follow doc recommendations for Flap protecting your abdominal area. Emotional aspect is more difficult and required time. Being unemployed is not fun, but you definitely need only positive energy around you. I remember you recommended a book for partners. Did your husband read it? It will be a good first step.Some breast centers have support groups/seminars for partners. A good phycologist could be helpful too.
    Keep us posted,
    New Flower
  • Cat64
    Cat64 Member Posts: 1,192
    Helen
    I spent over an hour typing a response to you, then it disappeared! UGH! So I'll try this again....
    First, let me start by saying I'm so sorry that you are not receiving the support you need from your husband. I get upset when I read stories like these. There's alot of things I want to say, but won't. I will, however send a PM to you and suggest you ask your husband a ? that comes to mind. I totally agree with what our other sisters have said. Your husband should seek help of his own. Is he looking for another job? He has had some terrible things happen to him, but that doesn't excuse the way he has treated you or your children. 3 weeks after my diagnosis, my husband lost his mother too, however, his main concern was & is seeing me through to recovery. He cooked, cleaned, got our son off to school, babysat one of our grandchildren while our daughter went to school, cared for our animals, took me to appointments, sat with me during Chemo, and we are self-employed so he took on my part (the best he could)at work as well. He has had alot of weight on his shoulders throughout this process.
    I believe this is the way it should be. We would most certainly do the same for them. I wonder how old your children are? Can they help you at all? Friends, family, anyone? You should not be carrying wood, laundry, or anything similiar so soon after surgery.
    I did not have a Mastectomy, so I don't know how you must feel, but it sounds to me like you need some time to yourself. Can you maybe escape for a few days or a weekend? Please don't take this the wrong way, (or maybe I took it the wrong way?) but your focus should not be on "how fast" you will be healed. (esp. for his sake) You need to somehow take the time you need to rest & recover not just physically, but mentally, emotionally, and spiritually also. Who's to say "how long" that will take. Yes, your Cancer is gone, and that is a blessing, but there is so much more to this. You have been though alot, this is no easy road and cannot be quick-fixed. Feel free to PM me anytime if you ever need a shoulder or an ear. Please take care of YOU! My prayers are with you.
    ♥ Cathy
  • taleena
    taleena Member Posts: 1,612 Member
    I am so sorry for chimming
    I am so sorry for chimming in today, instead of yesterday dear friend... but to be honest, when I read your post yesterday it made me so angry I didn't have the words at the time to be much help....

    First I will start by saying... You... right now... are number 1. You have to take care of yourself, making sure not to over do it. Then whats left of your energy should be for your children, after all they are children who require care... your husband is an adult and quite able to care for himself... make him... You really need to either have a long honest talk with your husband, or maybe even write him a letter, to express yourself... to see if you can get him to at least "get it" a little bit...

    Maybe you should give yourself permission for a good cry... I hate crying and often hold things in until I feel like breaking... but holding it in is NOT healthy... I know that..and you know that... it does not say that we are weak it accually tells us we are strong, that we can allow ourselves to feel it, to identify it, and find some sense of relief from it. (I'll let you know a little secrete... I allow myself my tears while I'm showering... I come out with my face red, and wet, and no one is the wiser)

    I hope you find some peace my friend...

    ♥ & hugs,

    ~T
  • natly15
    natly15 Member Posts: 1,941
    Helen you are not His
    Helen you are not His Mother. He needs to rise to the occasion, take responsibility and start acting like an adult. sounds to me like he feels helpless and maybe a little hopeless. Loosing a job I think has something to do with a man's sense of himself. He sounds depressed and frightened.

    You my dear are going thru one heck of a battle, and you just dont get healed in a hurry. He wants you to hurry so you can maybe take care of him?

    Perhaps he needs to see his medical doctor and perhaps a counselor.

    We women always seem to take on more than we need to take on. Please take care of yourself this whole cancer thing is a process of healing.
  • elm3544
    elm3544 Member Posts: 748
    husbands
    I wonder if it would be helpful for him to talk to the other husbands who have been on this board? Maybe they can enlighten him. He needs to understand that healing does not occur overnight.
  • Akiss4me
    Akiss4me Member Posts: 2,188
    Awww...
    Cancer sucks, doesn't it? It's even worse when the one person you count on being there for you is not able. I'm going to speak from experience here...
    My husband has gone through every step from the get go with me and I don't think I would have made it through without him to count on and lean on. But he has always been the one to step up to the plate with family matters.
    One day he just started pushing me, it seemed, beyond what I knew I was able to do at the time. He wanted to know how soon I would be going back to work, could I make dinner that evening (LOL...I don't cook!), when could I start cleaning the litter box (Ewwww...not with stitches!)and other things I normally would (or even would NOT) do. These were questions that he obviously already knew the answers to, but pressed the issues anyway (sometimes being sarcastic).
    After a few weeks of this, I finally asked him why the sudden change and didn't he realize I wasn't capable at this time? It just turned out that he was suddenly "worn" out. He felt he had nothing left to give me, because for so many years, that was all he did for others. Never got a break himself and now he was 'breaking'. He was looking for things to be back to "normal"!
    He just felt the need to have someone take care of him for once. After he realized that I wasn't in the position to be that person until I was healed myself, he did agree to some compromises to lighten the load (call in the kids!). He didn't neccessarily need ME to be the person to take care of him, he needed the load lightened. THAT I was capable of arranging!
    Sometimes men have a hard time verbalizing what they really need. They think we should already know. My husband took care of me for 8 months! I don't blame him for wearing out and probably getting depressed himself. But I had to firmly tell him that I was not capable to fullfill his request personally, but was able to delegate the task. When I was diagnosed with cancer, it not only changed my world, but by no doing of his own, changed his world too.
    Now that I am back to work, I have the issue of stressing to him that it does NOT mean that I am 100% yet. Baby steps, baby steps, baby steps!!!
    Sending you lots of cyber hugs and strength. I hope all works out for you. There has been some great advice already given to you here. Try to remember (without guilt!) that you are number 1 right now, period! Take care of YOU first! Do what you can to ease his load, through others, if thats what he needs, so he can take care of him. And remember....venting is good!!! (LOL)
    Sending you many cyber hugs and strength!!
    Pammy
  • aztec45
    aztec45 Member Posts: 757
    I Agree...
    I agree with Pammy. I had not thought of it that way. If a person gives and gives, eventually they may give out themselves. I have been there. I experienced this when my mom got sick last June. I was dealing with my cancer, I had to get the house ready for her (she was a bit disabled), get her started on medicade, and disability etc. I did not have any help from my brothers. I had a melt down. When my mom asked me what was wrong with me, I told her, I could not do it all anymore. She phoned some friends and my brothers and got me some help. That may be what your hubby needs.

    I hope everything works out for you. Pammy is right. You are priortiy #1. Take care of you.

    Pat
  • Wolfi
    Wolfi Member Posts: 425
    Define healed
    Helen,

    What is your definition of "healed". If you mean physically it could be months. I had my bi-lateral at the end of August and still wake up during the night with tightness in my chest from the muscles and nerves healing (I assume this is normal).

    Mentally, I think that it will take longer for me to "heal" since I can be fine one day and then upset the next. Things haven't been that bad for me, but there are days when I worry about the bc coming back and not finding it in time to treat it.

    If I were you I would find a local support group and meet with them to talk about what you're dealing with at home. Don't try to do everything yourself and communicate to your husband that you need him to help YOU (not the other way around). If that doesn't work, just come on this site and "chat" with us - you'll feel better.

    Take care and continue to post.