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Woah...Chemo make you mean?

Shayenne's picture
Shayenne
Posts: 2370
Joined: Jan 2009

So I was watching this movie which got me wondering, does chemo make you into someone mean?? alot of cussing, screaming, and all that? because wow.. that's kind of scaring me..I didn't think it would make you lash out at people?

I'm sorry I am asking some really stupid questions, just wanting to know what to expect.. thanks all for being there!

~Donna

Buzzard's picture
Buzzard
Posts: 3073
Joined: Aug 2008

The chemo doesn't but the reason we take it makes me mad. That I allowed it to enter my body but its gonna leave as fast as it came in......and yeah, getting mad makes ya fight harder, you just have to get in the right frame of mind. It like being in control kinda, you just have to be able to direct the madness to become an aid in your defense...Your gonna be fine Hun...trust me...enjoy yourself and take things as they come and we'll deal with the hard stuff as a team....... :-)....God Bless ya ....

CherylHutch's picture
CherylHutch
Posts: 1399
Joined: Apr 2007

Naaaaa... Donna! Chemo doesn't make you mean :) As a matter of fact, I found that because *I* was on chemo, everyone else would go out of their way to do things for me... and to see all this goodness coming from people, one couldn't help but feel more positive and just plain happy that something so nasty (cancer) actually does bring out the best in everyone.

Buzz mentioned using anger to help in the fight... and I think that's a good idea. If you find you are angry, or get mad because there are just so many darn appts. and this has really thrown your life upside down, then take that anger and make it work for you.

But, as far as I know, I've never gotten angry... and yet, I'm fighting the battle and will not let the beast get the better of me. Right now, I'm in the best of spirits because I'm doing and feeling so well right now... but that doesn't mean I'm easing off of the fight in the least!

But don't you worry. Think of chemo as any medicine you've ever taken that you haven't particularly enjoyed but you know it's worked for you so there's no thought of not taking it. I don't know if you have ever tried that yucky Buckley's Cough Medicine. It tastes FOUL!! There are no words to describe how horrid it tastes ... but, if you have a bad bad cough, I swear Buckley's is the best thing to take for it. So, yes it tastes horrible (hence, not the most pleasant of experiences) but it really does the trick (which is a really good thing). Think of chemo like that. Chemo is not the most pleasant of experiences and certainly not something you would choose to do as a recreational drug ... on the other hand, the benefits are great. AND, for the days that you feel a little on the yucky side... there are 3 times as many days where you feel just fine :)

Hugggggs,

Cheryl

Shayenne's picture
Shayenne
Posts: 2370
Joined: Jan 2009

I think I can handle it, thanks for that, I was watching "Dying Young" with Julia Roberts and it was scary how he was portraying someone on chemo, I thought, wow.. am I going to be screaming and sweating and curl myself up in a corner, I would hate being like that in front of my kids, that would scare the bejesus out of them!

I go to my first doctor consult this afternoon, it's supposed to take 2 hours, but I hear she's really good, encouraging and hope she will do well for me..she'll be discussing my plan of care for me, I'm really scared, but I am ready to fight this already!

Hugsss!
~Donna

msccolon's picture
msccolon
Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2004

I was going to ask and then you answered! I will have to watch that movie. I would imagine since the title is dying young, that the person with cancer was plain angry at getting it so young and was angry with the whole situation and not just because he was on chemo; but I haven't watched it so I'm guessing. Besides, figure the odds ANYBODY involved with the movie actually knew first hand what it's like! Hollywood can get some warped ideas about such things. In fact, I stopped watching Desperate Housewives when that blond was "going through chemo" and the only real fallout for her was the hair (she wore scarves). In every other way she was the same person, bossy, etc, and didn't even appear to be even TIRED during or after treatment. Maybe some people sail through chemo that way, but the majority of us sure don't! Anyhow, I'm going to have to rent that movie.
mary

CherylHutch's picture
CherylHutch
Posts: 1399
Joined: Apr 2007

Ooooh, Donna.... don't get sucked into the Hollywood movie biz! Remember... Hollywood is there to entertain for big $$$. If they portrayed a love story (young couple, one very ill, one very healthy, both very beautiful, one finds out they have terminal cancer... lots of tears, death, then what happens to beautiful girl who was the caregiver) as to what it would be like in reality, no one would watch it! Where's the romance?? Where are the beautiful people?? Why isn't there a happy ending?? Naaaaa... Hollywood has to doctor up movies so that they "sell"... and what sells better than beautiful people, throw in some sadness, squeeze out some tears, and then have the girl ride off into the sunset, knowing full well that she will do ok :)

It's the same as TV... even those darn reality tv competition shows! Look at all the Idol shows... WHY oh WHY do they have to show days and days of the most horrid auditions? People auditioning who can't carry a note... who dress like they don't own a decent pair of clothes ... and who can't move or dance... yet they think they have a chance to become the next American, Canadian or British Idol??? Noooo... it's the producers... they know that people making fools of themselves, sell... so you rarely see the final 20 in any of the auditions... but you see days worth of people who got turned away. I still don't know why these people do it... for their 5 minutes of fame?? Would any of us want to be famous for being one of the worst auditionee's on an Idol show??

So, knowing how phony the Reality shows are... just remember, the movies are just as phoney and are made to sell for big $$$ :)

You will NOT be like what's his name in Dying Young. If anything, you will be telling your kids, "Try and keep the noise down... Mommy needs a nap, but will be up after a little sleep". If you do have other side affects, they will be more the kind you can keep from the kids... so don't be scared. Easier said than done because we ALL were scared before starting our chemos... because we all had it pre-programmed that it was going to be horrible ;) But I think there's enough of us who can say, it's not the most fun we've ever had... but it wasn't nearly as bad as our imagination made it out to be :)

Hugggggs,

Cheryl

taraHK
Posts: 1961
Joined: Aug 2003

This hasn't been my experience at all. In fact, for me (and I believe many others), there is a "don't sweat the small stuff" grace that can come. I have been able to work throughout most of my treatments -- and I find I get much LESS agitated about things. Cancer does help one put things in perspective. I have had experienced a certain "battle mentality" about fighting cancer -- but this has not spilled over into other parts of my life (I don't think!).

There is no such thing as a stupid question. Everyone's experience is different. I hope yours is as positive as it can be. It's strange to use the word "positive" when referring to chemo (!). But believe it or not, it'll be better once you start (maybe) -- waiting is soooooo hard!

All the best
Tara

maglets's picture
maglets
Posts: 2589
Joined: Jun 2006

not everyone will agree Donna but I gave up cancer movies....tooo much false emotion...lordie knows we have enough real emotion and fears without Hollywood bootin it up. Same thing with Sex and the City....when Samantha was doing chemo all you had to do was suck on a popsicle....bingo all better!

Best best wishes and hugs for today
hope it goes well
Mags

tiny one
Posts: 467
Joined: Jan 2009

I didn't sweat the small stuff when I was going thru treatment. It was after treatment was done for awhile that my temper came back. Cancer patients and survivors go through so much, that at some point this maybe a release for some of us. We all have a right to feel angry. There are alot of ways to channel the negatives. God bless.

ldot123's picture
ldot123
Posts: 276
Joined: Apr 2008

Hi there,
You are new to the board so I welcome you. This is a great group of people. Chemo does a lot of different things to folks but I don' recall anyone saying they felt mean - frustrated maybe or mad at the situation. Everyone reacts differently to chemo in terms of what happens physically or emotionally. There are no strict rules as to how you will react. What is great about this board is that you can share these experiences and compare notes. For me, I felt quite tired at times and was in a bit of a fog mentally. After I was finished it took me a long time to get my energy back, but again, that's me not necessarily you. Let is know how you are doing. Cheers, Lance

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Mike49's picture
Mike49
Posts: 269
Joined: Nov 2008

My life has changed a great deal since my diagnosis, but it hasn't been all bad, I think about life and others on this site. I really don't sweat the small stuff anymore, since, it really is small stuff compared to the work of my life. I refuse to let my cancer or my treatment define me. I am thinking, contributing, loving my family and maybe a little tired. If I get testy, I apologize right away, because my support system so important. My kids have shown a huge amount of maturity, (they are 7,10 and 12) and it's not fair, but they have shown me so much, in how they help, and how they understand.

Your not gonna be mean, your gonna surprise yourself with your strength and with the way your kids respond. Kids are amazing, yours are too. If you feel mad, get on this site and scream, we'll respond with understanding.

kmygil
Posts: 881
Joined: Feb 2007

Hah! Anyone on chemo who has the energy to rant, rave and carry on like that must also be on meth! At times I was mad, so I mumbled, "This sucks." That's all the energy I had for rage--mumbling. Hollywood's gotta sell tickets, ya know!

Kirsten

msccolon's picture
msccolon
Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2004

I love it "At times I was mad, so I mumbled, 'This sucks'"! I hear you LOUD and CLEAR!!!
mary

Shayenne's picture
Shayenne
Posts: 2370
Joined: Jan 2009

Kmy just gave me that giggle right there, I can see her lying sprawled out on the bed, too tired but yet mad mumbling, "this sucks" lol.. I'm sorry, I couldn't stop laughing, I'm actually picturing me doing that. I'm usually so laid-back, and hated the thought of me thrashing at someone...thanks all for that, I agree on the "Desperate Housewives" thing as well.. I love that show, but when Lynette had cancer, it seemed like it was nothing. She even wanted sex from her hubby, who got scared when she took her wig off?? it turned him off?? omg..I'm too tired to even think about sex never mind doing it, and if my hubby got turned off because I took my wig off, I would have thrown him out of the house.. sheesh!

PhillieG's picture
PhillieG
Posts: 4884
Joined: May 2005

It can make one very grumpy. I think it depends on how you are doing with your treatments and surgeries. I'm just about at my 5 year point of having been diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer, I've been through 5 operations (the last 3 for mets in my lungs) and I've easily had 160 rounds of chemo. Sometimes if I'm not feeling well I can get rather nasty. It's an uphill battle with no real end in sight. Also, depending on the course of treatment, that can make one mean. I am on Erbitux and the side effects are really a drag. I think it's been about 3 years of that stuff too with no end in sight. Overall, things are OK and I deal with it but I can see how some people could get mean. How long can one battle this without any real progress and not feel like you're being beat about?
Otherwise, I'm feeling GREAT! :-)
-phil

msccolon's picture
msccolon
Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2004

"Otherwise, I'm feeling GREAT!" Don't we know it! Sounds like you are really having it tough! It's like the last time my onc suggested I go back on chemo since my CEA has been rising and I found out the LAST time I went on chemo it only dropped my CEA 2.5 points! I'm like that was HELL for 2.5 measly points! No thank you and I think I'll go check some stuff online now!
mary

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