Sad Poll: Who was not there for you?

christinecarl
christinecarl Member Posts: 543
edited March 2014 in Colorectal Cancer #1
Did you have people that you thought would be there for you, but then were not? With Father's Day coming up, it just makes me think of my dad. Who never once through 6 months of chemo called me to see how I was. I always thought having a sick child would be a parents worst nightmare, he made it look easy. What about you, what was your experience with this?
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Comments

  • sharpy102
    sharpy102 Member Posts: 368
    .
    Well...NO ONE was there for me...or for my Mom either...it would've been really nice to have someone there when I was fighting for my Mom...to have someone who told me that I did things right...that I did the right thing...to have someone there I could maybe weep a little to...oh well...gotta get trained to life, eh? I don't care....I used to...but I learned not to. No expectations, no disappointments...*humpf*
  • PamPam2
    PamPam2 Member Posts: 370
    Not there
    Yep, My boyfriend of several years took a job about an hour away and rented an apt. there, he has a house not far from mine. Called me about once a week, just faded away. And my best girlfriend of over 15 years abandoned me too, she made the remark it would be too painful to watch me die, not sorry I had to disappoint on that account! I have to say the boyfriend tried to come back into my life after all my surgeries and chemo was over and I was doing better, no way. There were a couple people I had not been real close with previously that did step up to help me a little with rides, stayed with me at hospital, had benefit, cooked me something, and so on, so I guess I made some new friends too. Mostly, I was on my own. I am over the hurt, but I do not think I can ever forgive.
    Pam
  • PhillieG
    PhillieG Member Posts: 4,866
    For me...
    No one that mattered to me wasn't there for me. I "lost" a few people I worked with. It was like I was contagious but more likely it was that cancer hit a nerve with them somehow. It has a way of doing that. My family and friends have been supportive the entire time.
  • coloCan
    coloCan Member Posts: 1,944 Member
    PhillieG said:

    For me...
    No one that mattered to me wasn't there for me. I "lost" a few people I worked with. It was like I was contagious but more likely it was that cancer hit a nerve with them somehow. It has a way of doing that. My family and friends have been supportive the entire time.

    After way sister and brother dealt with our dying mother,
    I figured they wouldn;t help me,the eldest, if I ever got real sick. Sure enough,six months after mother's death,I get my Dx and when I ask sister to drive me for Tx as I could no longer do so and I get the same song she sang about our mother: "My family comes first, if you think......".....Brother helped a little at first but to him, it was like I had an ingrown toenail--five minutes on the internet and he could've educated himself but no......"What do you mean the chemo is killing you?....Did you tell your doctor? What medicine are you taking?" After awhile he stopped even calling. Relatives also nowhere to be seen; have no idea what siblings, who were close to cousins, told them about me-I'm only one never married, no kids, worked either nights or midnights 33 years so never around for alot of family stuff' everyone else married with kids-my lifestyle totally different. Anyway....

    A "Friend" of 35+ years was no where to be found when the one time I called him to help me.

    So me and my girlfriend, along with my doctors,nurses,etc and after Oct 2, people here when I found this site, have kept me going. But during the darkest hours, the scariest of times, the worst moments it was my girlfriend who kept me alive and she's my only motivation to beat this......And thats ALL I NEED!!!!!

    Rescently,tho, three men I used to work with many years ago called out of the blue. The two I was closest to both cursed me out for not calling them for help when we could really have used it but I told both, as we hadn't communicated in quite some time, how can I call to ask for help (shopping for us,driving girlfriend to stores, me to Tx,etc)after not speaking to you guys all those years? So now we'll call each other as we're all retired now

    This upcoming Sat I plan on going to my first Relay with the aim of meeting face to face another colostamate, which I haven't met yet in person, so we can rub bags together.....

    Anyone out there on their own who needs an ear, PM if you want......steve
  • maglets
    maglets Member Posts: 2,576
    coloCan said:

    After way sister and brother dealt with our dying mother,
    I figured they wouldn;t help me,the eldest, if I ever got real sick. Sure enough,six months after mother's death,I get my Dx and when I ask sister to drive me for Tx as I could no longer do so and I get the same song she sang about our mother: "My family comes first, if you think......".....Brother helped a little at first but to him, it was like I had an ingrown toenail--five minutes on the internet and he could've educated himself but no......"What do you mean the chemo is killing you?....Did you tell your doctor? What medicine are you taking?" After awhile he stopped even calling. Relatives also nowhere to be seen; have no idea what siblings, who were close to cousins, told them about me-I'm only one never married, no kids, worked either nights or midnights 33 years so never around for alot of family stuff' everyone else married with kids-my lifestyle totally different. Anyway....

    A "Friend" of 35+ years was no where to be found when the one time I called him to help me.

    So me and my girlfriend, along with my doctors,nurses,etc and after Oct 2, people here when I found this site, have kept me going. But during the darkest hours, the scariest of times, the worst moments it was my girlfriend who kept me alive and she's my only motivation to beat this......And thats ALL I NEED!!!!!

    Rescently,tho, three men I used to work with many years ago called out of the blue. The two I was closest to both cursed me out for not calling them for help when we could really have used it but I told both, as we hadn't communicated in quite some time, how can I call to ask for help (shopping for us,driving girlfriend to stores, me to Tx,etc)after not speaking to you guys all those years? So now we'll call each other as we're all retired now

    This upcoming Sat I plan on going to my first Relay with the aim of meeting face to face another colostamate, which I haven't met yet in person, so we can rub bags together.....

    Anyone out there on their own who needs an ear, PM if you want......steve

    there are not
    to tell you the truth I haven't thought much about this subject over the past 6 years of fighting cancer. I am either surgical post surgical or chemoed out....if not then I am on a high just not having to do chemo

    I thank the my lucky stars for my some friends and over course hubby and daughter but I found when it come right down to it....you are going down that path alone. It's tough sometimes but sometimes I did not want friends around....sometimes they are too much work when all you can do is lift your flippin head on the pillow.

    I guess I am sort of a what will be will be person and if people didn't show up that's ok too....rarely saw by brother but that's ok too....

    no time for regret

    mags
  • maglets
    maglets Member Posts: 2,576
    coloCan said:

    After way sister and brother dealt with our dying mother,
    I figured they wouldn;t help me,the eldest, if I ever got real sick. Sure enough,six months after mother's death,I get my Dx and when I ask sister to drive me for Tx as I could no longer do so and I get the same song she sang about our mother: "My family comes first, if you think......".....Brother helped a little at first but to him, it was like I had an ingrown toenail--five minutes on the internet and he could've educated himself but no......"What do you mean the chemo is killing you?....Did you tell your doctor? What medicine are you taking?" After awhile he stopped even calling. Relatives also nowhere to be seen; have no idea what siblings, who were close to cousins, told them about me-I'm only one never married, no kids, worked either nights or midnights 33 years so never around for alot of family stuff' everyone else married with kids-my lifestyle totally different. Anyway....

    A "Friend" of 35+ years was no where to be found when the one time I called him to help me.

    So me and my girlfriend, along with my doctors,nurses,etc and after Oct 2, people here when I found this site, have kept me going. But during the darkest hours, the scariest of times, the worst moments it was my girlfriend who kept me alive and she's my only motivation to beat this......And thats ALL I NEED!!!!!

    Rescently,tho, three men I used to work with many years ago called out of the blue. The two I was closest to both cursed me out for not calling them for help when we could really have used it but I told both, as we hadn't communicated in quite some time, how can I call to ask for help (shopping for us,driving girlfriend to stores, me to Tx,etc)after not speaking to you guys all those years? So now we'll call each other as we're all retired now

    This upcoming Sat I plan on going to my first Relay with the aim of meeting face to face another colostamate, which I haven't met yet in person, so we can rub bags together.....

    Anyone out there on their own who needs an ear, PM if you want......steve

    there or not
    to tell you the truth I haven't thought much about this subject over the past 6 years of fighting cancer. I am either surgical post surgical or chemoed out....if not then I am on a high just not having to do chemo

    I thank the my lucky stars for my some friends and of course hubby and daughter but I found when it come right down to it....you are going down that path alone. It's tough sometimes but sometimes I did not want friends around....sometimes they are too much work when all you can do is lift your flippin head on the pillow.

    I guess I am sort of a what will be will be person and if people didn't show up that's ok too....rarely saw by brother but that's ok too....

    no time for regret

    mags....sorry don't know why I got 2 of this....is there no way to delete?
  • StacyGleaso
    StacyGleaso Member Posts: 1,233 Member
    Thoughts on this...
    I have a lot of thoughts on this subject. There are people who are in our lives when we have positive things happening, but not when the chips are down. I don't think of it as an insult, I think of how weak THEY are. They do not know how to give selflessly; they do not know how to process their own feelings; they do not know how to realize that this is NOT about them, but about someone else; they feel helpless. It's easy to fault someone for not being there, but unfortunately, that is their personal way of handling things. We are stronger, we "get it." We realize how short and precious life can be, and they probably never will.

    Having been through what we have been through, we understand. We needn't be sad for what they didn't give us, we need to remember that they are sadly cheating themselves.

    Don't let these feelings bring you down...tap into your internal strength and TRUE friends to keep you on TOP OF THE WORLD!

    Monday hugs to you,

    Stacy
  • Patteee
    Patteee Member Posts: 945
    I am more like Mags. My
    I am more like Mags. My family was there for me- especially my mother and twin sister. The man I was involved with at the time faded away- but think that was coming before cancer dx. I had many many friends, coworkers and neighbors step up to the plate. No regrets.

    I do find it interesting- almost offensive? My ex-mo-in-law, whom I adore to this day- really brushed off my experience by comparing it to every tom-****-and-harry she has ever know who had cancer of any form. My ex-sis-in-law had breast cancer and it never fails that she brings up how she never took any time off while going through chemo, etc, etc. (and here I was 3 hospitalizations due to chemo- I was pretty sick on chemo and 3 surgeries). Not to downplay her experiences and not trying to one her up or anything, but I would just like to slap her silly when she implies I am a whimpy complainer!.
  • bdee
    bdee Member Posts: 304
    My brother
    My brother and I were not close growing up (even though we were only 15 months apart). We went our separate ways when we got married, but we ended up living in the same town. For about six years we were very close, then all of a sudden his wife closed off our side of the family. She refuses to come to family gatherings and I'm wandering if she's even going to come to any family funerals. (We haven't had one of those in a while).
    Before cancer I helped my parents with my Grandmother (105) who lives with them. I was up every other Sunday so they could go to church. My sister-in-law told me they had their lives to live and they would only go up to help about once a quarter. Both of their sons are not married, one lives in town, one travels a lot. My sister-in-law's family lives out of state. She doesn't work and my brother works for the state and has lots of vacation time and about to retire.
    It was my sister-in-law who cut them out of our lives but my brother had to go along with it. So I don't expect much from them anymore.

    Debbie
  • Jaylo969
    Jaylo969 Member Posts: 824
    Patteee said:

    I am more like Mags. My
    I am more like Mags. My family was there for me- especially my mother and twin sister. The man I was involved with at the time faded away- but think that was coming before cancer dx. I had many many friends, coworkers and neighbors step up to the plate. No regrets.

    I do find it interesting- almost offensive? My ex-mo-in-law, whom I adore to this day- really brushed off my experience by comparing it to every tom-****-and-harry she has ever know who had cancer of any form. My ex-sis-in-law had breast cancer and it never fails that she brings up how she never took any time off while going through chemo, etc, etc. (and here I was 3 hospitalizations due to chemo- I was pretty sick on chemo and 3 surgeries). Not to downplay her experiences and not trying to one her up or anything, but I would just like to slap her silly when she implies I am a whimpy complainer!.

    Patteee
    I'm wondering...do we have the same in-laws? LOL

    -Pat
  • Jaylo969
    Jaylo969 Member Posts: 824
    an eye opener
    I had several long term friendships that took a u-turn when they heard that I was sick. These were people I have known since the 70's and 80's and I had invested a lot into the friendships.I was ALWAYS there when they needed to cry on my shoulder about their misfortunes but they left me at a time when I really needed them. One 'friend' who I have known since 1972 called me in the hospital the day after my surgery and gave me his version of the last rites....basically told me it was ok for me to go ahead and die, never even asking any specifics about my situation...just thinking cancer = death. And apparently he was through with me; had written me off.I was deeply hurt by the actions and reactions of people until I realized that it is their weakness, not mine. It is their loss, doesn't have to be mine. I will say that seeing how my long term friends have manifested I am very reluctant to start any new friendships...especially with folks who tend to just drain all of the energy I have.

    I am so sorry that people in their weakest moments get deserted by those who should be their advocates. I don't know how to fix it. Something seems to be missing or malfunctioning in their inner being. I personally have just "shaken the dust and moved on". Not mad or bitter just see it for what it is and move on.

    -Pat
  • HollyID
    HollyID Member Posts: 946
    I have a sister-in-law
    whom I thought I was close to. Guess not. She's emailed me once, right after surgery in December, to see how I'm doing and if I'm gonna "beat this thing". I personally found that offensive. I haven't talked to her since.

    Do you think the lack of conversation is because they really don't know what to say with a fear that they're gonna stick their foot in their mouth? I've often wondered that. Although, my mother calls me at least once a week to see how I am, as do my sisters, one of my other sisters-in-law and brothers.

    Christine, you're right. Having a child that's sick or injured is the worst!! I wouldn't wish this upon anyone though, especially my kids. I'm so sorry that your dad was so uncommunicative. That's gotta hurt.

    ETA: My friends at work have been wonderful. Nobody with sad faces anymore and my boss has been my biggest cheerleader. No more sad faces, they know I've kicked this cancers ****. They're wonderful human beings who've offered to do more than my wonderful family has -- and my family has offered a lot!!

    Others have said that this is their weakness, not ours. You're all right. It's their weakness that's caused them to miss out, not mine.
  • eric38
    eric38 Member Posts: 583
    Stuff happens
    There are many things to be grateful for. I have plenty of family members who are there for me and my best friend is there for me too. The ones I am most disappointed about are my father and my brother. My father has been neglectful most of my life so that is no big surprise. I just wish he would at least act like he cared. My brother is the biggest disappointment because we were close growing up and we only live 23 miles apart but he acts like I don't exist. He has been on a health kick for the last year and it seems as though he does not want to be dragged down by someone with health problems. He doesn't even call to check on me much less visit.

    Eric
  • just4Brooks
    just4Brooks Member Posts: 980
    Great post
    3 of my 4 (2 step and one 1/2) brothers never came over or even called. Yes we grew up together sense little kids. NOT EVEN A PHONE CALL!!
  • Aud
    Aud Member Posts: 479
    chistinecarl
    sorry your Dad was not there for you. I have a great understanding of that, not during cancer treatment, but through other things in life.
    My Dad died in 2003 (suddenly) and just prior to that I made the decision to forgive him, which was more like a process than an overnight decision actually. It helped me to heal emotionally.
    Holding you in the Light for healing and peace.
    ~Aud
  • Aud
    Aud Member Posts: 479
    eric38 said:

    Stuff happens
    There are many things to be grateful for. I have plenty of family members who are there for me and my best friend is there for me too. The ones I am most disappointed about are my father and my brother. My father has been neglectful most of my life so that is no big surprise. I just wish he would at least act like he cared. My brother is the biggest disappointment because we were close growing up and we only live 23 miles apart but he acts like I don't exist. He has been on a health kick for the last year and it seems as though he does not want to be dragged down by someone with health problems. He doesn't even call to check on me much less visit.

    Eric

    Eric
    not to make excuses for your brother, but I wonder if he's scared? How is he when you call him? I know what you mean about the Dad who isn't there. I think it's sad and it's his loss. Anyway, I'm glad that you have the rest of your family to support you.
    ~Aud
  • RickMurtagh
    RickMurtagh Member Posts: 586
    Disappointed
    I have not really been disappointed. Things worked out pretty much as expected as far as support. Was not expected was how much closer my brother and I have become. We talk once or twice every weekday. He calls during his commute (west coast) and I am unemployed (east coast).
    It has been really nice to get to know him better, see my niece, his daughter a few times and just enjoy each other's company, even if it is mostly just on the phone.
  • RickMurtagh
    RickMurtagh Member Posts: 586
    maglets said:

    there are not
    to tell you the truth I haven't thought much about this subject over the past 6 years of fighting cancer. I am either surgical post surgical or chemoed out....if not then I am on a high just not having to do chemo

    I thank the my lucky stars for my some friends and over course hubby and daughter but I found when it come right down to it....you are going down that path alone. It's tough sometimes but sometimes I did not want friends around....sometimes they are too much work when all you can do is lift your flippin head on the pillow.

    I guess I am sort of a what will be will be person and if people didn't show up that's ok too....rarely saw by brother but that's ok too....

    no time for regret

    mags

    I like that
    I lit that...no time for regret
  • pamysue
    pamysue Member Posts: 105
    My older sister
    We had always been there for each other. Whatever the other needed. Never kept score.

    My son was only 20 when I had my bowel resection, etc... then I went into renal failure. 5-7 day hospital stay turned into 3 weeks. I don't even remember the first week. Psychologist said it was not unusual. Said it was a psychotic break.

    On day 4, I was told later, my sister left. She did not call my son. Said she was sick and tired of me acting like a whiny little **** and when I wanted to apologize she would speak to me again. I have no memory of this.

    We have no other family here. But have really good friends.

    But she left my son alone. Her first and "favorite" nephew. She was there when he was born. That's been over 2 years ago and neither me nor my son have heard from her. It still hurts me deeply that she could just leave him. I hate her.
  • lisa42
    lisa42 Member Posts: 3,625
    pamysue said:

    My older sister
    We had always been there for each other. Whatever the other needed. Never kept score.

    My son was only 20 when I had my bowel resection, etc... then I went into renal failure. 5-7 day hospital stay turned into 3 weeks. I don't even remember the first week. Psychologist said it was not unusual. Said it was a psychotic break.

    On day 4, I was told later, my sister left. She did not call my son. Said she was sick and tired of me acting like a whiny little **** and when I wanted to apologize she would speak to me again. I have no memory of this.

    We have no other family here. But have really good friends.

    But she left my son alone. Her first and "favorite" nephew. She was there when he was born. That's been over 2 years ago and neither me nor my son have heard from her. It still hurts me deeply that she could just leave him. I hate her.

    my heart is aching- my thoughts for you all...
    Pamysue and so many others here- wow. My heart is aching for you all. I have quickly been made to realize by reading all your posts here how fortunate I have been with people around me. The only significant friend in my life who's ditched me since my dx is a friend who I had thought my best friend since elementary school. That makes me really sad. But, she's been the only one like that- family and friends around me have been great.
    I guess when people in your lives have checked out, it's just that for whatever emotional/mental reason, they could not deal with your sickness. Either way, they were/are being selfish, of course. Either they don't want your sickness to "bring them down"- can't deal with bad news in other aspects of life, I'd bet- or they can't deal with it because they "don't want to see you suffer or die". Again- either way- it's very selfish.
    So sad- but- you've got to try to forgive and let it go. NOT that that's what they deserve from you- but for YOUR sake. Although I'm not dealing with this particular hurt in my life- so maybe it's easy for me to talk, you may be thinking- but I have dealt with other kinds of hurts in my life and I know from firsthand experience it's healing and catharctic to forgive others, even when you don't want and even when they truly don't deserve it. It's for YOU. Think of them as emotionally ill, in that they cannot deal with anything unpleasant, that affects them in some way, anyhow. That really is a handicap for people like that in life.
    I had all kinds of hurts from my dad (who died of AIDS in 1995)- things I found out about his past, how he lived a double life and a lie to us- I always thought he was a straight laced guy. Well, I discovered my dear old dad was soliciting gay prostitutes in public bathrooms. There- I said it- I've never told anyone outside my family and close friends who already knew that. After he died, I found out lots, lots more. It was horrible.
    I was horrified and very angry with him for a few years after his death. It was a process to get to the point where I realized he was also a victim from his childhood of some awful things and that this is the sad way he responded to his broken situation. I know this is a totally different situation than friends and family turning their backs on you when you got your cancer diagnosis, but my correlation here is that it was very healing for me to get to the point where I cried and talked out loud to my dead dad and forgave him and told him I understood why he behaved in the way he did and that I loved him.
    You may have the opportunity to do this face to face with those who have "abandoned" you. Or maybe not. But if not face to face, even just to them in your mind/heart- for YOUR sake. Just some food for thought.

    Take care and hugs to you all-
    Lisa