Dec 02, 2010 - 4:22 pm
Seeing as how most of you one here are the actual patients, perhaps you could give some advice for a caregiver. Particularly, how to encourage the cancer patient to do the necessary things to fight the cancer.
My husband started fighting this last episode of cancer in April. (in throat, close to larynx). He has had a defeated attitude from the beginning and I believe has probably been medically depressed for quite some time. "Of course, I'm depressed; I have cancer", is what he would tell me when I broached the subject. He has not been a "good" patient from the beginning. Things have gone from bad to worse. Had radiation/chemo which did not kill the cancer. then had a laryngectomy/neck dissection/free flap. Didn't appear to be recovering as he should from that and recent biopsy showed cancer returned at base of tongue. Now, PET reveals something in the lungs. His physical/mental state is abysmal. I know most of it is because of the extreme pain that he has been in for so long.
How does the cancer patient perceive all this? Where do they feel the line is between a caregiver trying to remind them to do the proper things (take meds, exercise, etc)and the caregiver being a nag. Sometimes I just want to give up and let him be but then I just can't sit back and watch him die without trying to help him. I just feel like I never give him what he needs.