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Posts: 428
Joined: Jul 2011

My 19 year old daughter informs me last night that I have become an angry person with three specific examples. So I am asking for your opinion regarding yesterday's incident and you tell me if it was justified anger or I am slowly becoming a psychopath. Give me your real opinion, I won't get angry (maybe). When I got to school yesterday there were three firetrucks with lights and sirens sitting in front of the building, one pink. I asked the custodian what was going on and she said something about breast cancer awareness. I went to my office and my secretary informs me the pink firetruck is to honor me as a survivor and both newspaper and TV are here to interview me as the pink firefighters honor me. I refused and left the building in tears. I was so angry. I feel like my privacy was violated and my suffering was put on display. Who is their right mind wants to be on TV because they have diseased breasts with a husband with a broken pooper? So the question is would you have appreciated this or been as angry as I was? I am angry with 19 year olds who think they know every damn thing.

jjaj133's picture
Posts: 869
Joined: Mar 2011

Wow, they should have never assumed you would be willing to do that. you should have been advised of their intention and given the oppurtunity to refuse.
I would have felt the same way.
As for your daughter, can't help there. I reared 4 who knew EVERYTHING at that age. Maybe you are trying to protect her too much by not sharing that, yes, you do get angry and have every right to. Just a thought.

John23's picture
Posts: 2140
Joined: Jan 2007

I would have been.... .... what's the word I'm looking for..... Pissed.
In fact, -that- does not even come close to how mad I would have been.

No-one has the right to place you into an embarrassing position like that;
no-one. It is rude, an invasion of privacy, and just plain wrong. I wonder
what the legality of it is? There can be legal ramifications to the releasing
of personal health data; No-one has the "right" to do that.

Being young, does -not- suggest the individual may act as irresponsibly
as they wish; there is an obvious loss of a thought process that most
normal human beings have. There is a process that includes "decency"
and "respect", that is very obviously missing with that individual,

I would make every attempt to find out who released the very personal
data, and who made the decision to enjoin the efforts of a public service
entity. It is too late to fix the damage to you, but you can help keep
someone else from suffering from needless public exposure.

Personally, I would not hesitate to call an attorney. There is a lesson
that should be taught, and sometimes nothing less than the weight of
a civil suit will do!

Yes..... you have the right to be mad.

Don't let the anger sap too much of your strength by bottling it up,
release it in ways that will provide you with the satisfaction you need
to help you remedy the anguish you feel.

Stay well,


PhillieG's picture
Posts: 4912
Joined: May 2005

Do you know WHO called the media? I think that's important. If it was your daughter, that's one thing. If it wasn't, then it's another thing.
I'm a bit surprised that your daughter wasn't aware of how you viewed your cancer if she was the one who put this together.
Everyone's different.

I've been part of one Associated Press story on the high cost of drugs, and one for the NY Times (NJ Edition) on the benefits of the support group Gilda's Club. Recently I've done another interview dealing with Long-Term Living With Cancer and on another site, my "Journey" is part of their main web page and is one of four rotating profiles. None of them were sought out by me. People who knew me and knew a story was being done related to either cancer or support groups asked me if I'd be interested in sharing my story. I have absolutely no problem taking about my colon cancer.

How I view it, if my willingness to talk about my cancer will cause someone to get a checkup and then prevent just one person from having to go through what I've been through, then it's well worth it. I'm not ashamed of having cancer, it can happen to anyone. I'd also feel very proud of my kids if they were part of something like that since I would view it as their way of honoring me. But, they know how I feel about cancer and that I will talk to anyone about it.

I've yet to be on TV, but I'd be "Tickled Pink" and I would have greatly appreciated it.

If your daughter knew your feelings with it being a private thing for you and did it anyway then I can understand you're feeling angry. If she wasn't aware of how you felt about it, I'd really look into that.
I know it's not about how your husband felt, but did your husband react the same way?
Does he feel the same way about his cancer?

Posts: 428
Joined: Jul 2011

Phil, I don't know who called the media but my guess is the local fire Dept. I admire that you have chosen to use your health crisis as a way to help others. I want to be that unselfish some day but am not there yet. My husband discusses his issues with no one but me and that discussion is minimal. That s why I am on the "boards" and he isn't although I share what I learn from all of you when I see a window of opportunity. My daughter didn't arrange this but just thought I was wrong to react so negatively. Thanks for sharing your opinion with me. Lisa

Buckwirth's picture
Posts: 1271
Joined: Jun 2010

so I probably have no right to respond. However, I have not let that stop me before, so why should I change my ways now (for any who miss the point, that was humor).

If a friend was chastising me for a reaction like yours I would probably explain it this way:

I am honored that they thought of me, and I understand that their heart is in the right place. In fact, there is nothing wrong with asking me if I want to participate in such an event. That said, I deserve the courtesy of being asked, well in advance. This is deeply personal, and making a public statement is something that I would need days, if not weeks, to decide both if I wanted to do it and, if I did, what I would say that would be appropriate and within my personal boundaries. My anger is not at being asked, it is at the insensitivity of NOT asking well in advance. Who knows, given the chance to think it over and discuss it with my immediate friends and family, I might have participated. Not being given that time in effect took that choice away from me, the only answer I could give with that notice was no.

That of course, is just me.

Posts: 372
Joined: May 2011

You are just so sensible and rational, Blake!

PhillieG's picture
Posts: 4912
Joined: May 2005

Cancer is an extremely personal disease/situation/health crisis. Blake made a lot of good points in his response. You should have been asked ahead of time. People who aren't in our shoes usually don't get it. Whether it's your daughter or the local fire dept, they don't seem to understand how personal and frightening the whole cancer thing can be. I know if things were presented to me right after I was diagnosed I probably would have had a different response. I've been at this over for 7 1/2 years. I'm seasoned (or well done!)

I do not think your daughter gets it. I would have been less than thrilled to say the least. I've had plenty of times when I've felt angry or have had a short fuse. It's a lot to have to go through and frankly, it's a prime example of the saying "life's not fair", and it often comes with the cancer.
God forbid, but your daughter should (try to) look at how she would feel if she were in your shoes.

I'm sorry you had to go through this Lisa. Hang in there, hopefully one day this will be a (somewhat) amusing story.

Posts: 372
Joined: May 2011

I would have been worried about being interviewed on TV because I have speaker's phobia bur I am with Phil in that I, nor my husband, mind talking about the cancer. We share with people the ups and downs and hope that we can help others through this tough time by our example. But people are all different and that certainly needs to be taken into account.

Buzzard's picture
Posts: 3073
Joined: Aug 2008

I have no desire to have my kids hear about anything I go through ...They certainly do not know my situation now but do know that I had cancer and they think I may live forever, maybe I will, but statistically well, I will not allow my issues to create havoc in their lives until I absolutely have to talk with them...I speak about things everywhere I go but try and keep things around the kids to the bare minimum. They know dad farts in a different place and his butts sewn shut but life expectancy, nope, notta, no way...Its going to be bad enough if it happens, I want them to be happy as long as possible......I absolutely hate this f-n disease.............not for me, but for my family...You have a daughter that is so terribly afraid of what the future holds and sees in you with this an opportunity to help you help yourself in speaking of it, maybe realizing that she needs you to talk about it so that she can feel ok. I don't exactly know what teens think..never have never will, but Im sure that the anger you feel is well intended and you should be your own advocate in the way you see fit, not someone else. .............buzz

sharpy102's picture
Posts: 371
Joined: Apr 2009

@Buckeye2: I'm not sure if I would get ANGRY...like you say. I think there's nothing to be angry about here. I do understand that you are not up for any type of "show" so to speak about your issue. Everybody is different. I would've taken it as "Thank you! It is nice to feel that people think of me, but no thank you, I would not like to participate in this in any way, so please send the TV people away. But really. Thank you for your attentiveness". I think it is nice that they thought of you, that they really look up at you. They don't look at you, "the poor thing who is at the edge of death". They look at you instead "WOW! She is so strong! And her presence is definitely needed, not by just her family, but by us". And is a good thing that they think of you this way. The part that you totally don't want to participate in any sort of interview, or chit-chat is understandable and normal. You should have just said that so. And then instead of storming off in anger, just close the door behind you and leave off. I'm a teen myself, and I'm sure I would want to talk to my Mom and reassure her that I love her and I know her days can be rough and ask her to be honest and upfront with me about her condition. I would not want her to "play" along as if nothing is bothering her. I would love to know how she is doing both physically with her disease, but emotionally. I would want to show her that I will always be there for her and want to be her best friend too, not just her daughter. So, I do think you should have not gotten mad and angry and storm off like that. Like I say, I understand your perspective, but you should have seen their perspective too and just politely thank and say you don't want to get involved, but thanks. But this is just my opinion. I'm sure many more people will come up here and say they totally agree with you. And please don't get upset with me...I do disagree with you, but respectfully, of course! I wish you all the best, okay?
- Sophie

Posts: 428
Joined: Jul 2011
marqimark's picture
Posts: 242
Joined: Jun 2011


I think you had more than enough reason to be, ummm, upset.

Even if being interviewed was something you were comfortable with, being blind sided is reason enough to be unhappy.

herdizziness's picture
Posts: 3642
Joined: Apr 2010

The tears you left in, pretty much says it all, didn't mean anger, (although I'm sure you had that in you as well at the time and for you rightly so)those tears mean they OVERWHELMED you in an unexpected way which was quite insane for them to have done to you. That doesn't mean you're an angry person or becoming a psychopath, it means this put you into a bit of shock and if they were to look at it rationally, they would understand what they did was in a way cruel by not ASKING you if it was okay, shock and awe is supposed to be for wars or surprise birthday parties, not for private boobie or pooper problems.
And hey, I've got a 24 year old that thinks he knows every damn thing, it doesn't end!!! LOL.
Winter Marie

Posts: 428
Joined: Jul 2011

Thanks for the laugh this morning. Lisa

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