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I feel so guilty...

Posts: 5
Joined: Feb 2012

I have been reading the posts.. and i guess i don't have it so bad.
I have been with my partner for 31 years, in May she had a double mastectomy and reconstruction has gone thru 8 rounds of chemo and 6 weeks of radiation. She still has a lot of pain in her chest. We were terrified when we found out she had cancer, I was so afraid of losing her. We cried for weeks, so now that we are thru this part of the journey I find my self getting so angry with her for stupid things. I try to keep up a good front but cannot help these feelings, I am angry at her for changing our lives, I know in my head this is not her fault but cannot help thinking our lives will never be the same. We have only been fighting this for 8 months and I know many others have done this for years, so i apoligize to those that are going thru a lot worse then i am. I am just tired of taking care of and worrying about her. I am so sorry I know there are people on this site that have lost people and probably think I am an *** for complaining, I was just wondering does anyone else feel this way?
Thank you for allowing me to vent, and again i do apoligize if anyone has taken offense.

kimmygarland's picture
Posts: 313
Joined: Aug 2009

I just posted a rant about my husband having a recurrence. We were just getting used to our "new Normal" life after a recurrence in 2010. I understand the frustration and realization that your life will never be the same. Never did I imagine that I would be sharing my life with someone who cannot eat, that I will never share a meal with, has to be constantly monitored, etc.

Having said that, I love him, he is worth it and he would do the same for me. But that doesn't always make it easier. Over the last 3 years what I have had to do a couple of times is just walk away. Even if it's just for 24 hours - just get someone to stay with her - and walk away. I am lucky, my son can do it. You may not think she can do without you - but she can.

The other thing that bothers me is how bitter this whole experience has made me. People complain about petty things and I just want to slap them - I want to say - you are so stupid - come live at my house for a week and then see if you have anything to complain about!

I completely understand. ((Hugs)) to you and your partner.

Posts: 5
Joined: Feb 2012

You are so kind.. i am at a loss for words...
thank you

grandmafay's picture
Posts: 1639
Joined: Aug 2009

I am one of those who lost my husband after a six year battle. I'm not offended at all. You are grieving for the life you expected. The one you had before cancer entered your life. Now you know that you are mortal beings, and that is scary. You're right, your lives will never be the same. Cancer changes so many things. Now you have to wonder what the next test or scan will show. You both live in fear that this monster will come back. You're lashing out at her because she is the most important person in your life. You are tired and scared. Sounds pretty normat to me. Sure, there are times when all of us caregivers get mad. Sometimes we want to run away from home. Sometimes we blame the person instead of the disease. We know it's not reasonable. Ok, so vent. This is a good place to do that. Talk to your partner when you are calm. Hopefully, you are able to share your feelings while admitting that you know they aren't reasonable. You have both been pushing hard to beat the cancer. Now, work on building your new life together. No, it won't be the same. It might even be better. Blessing, Fay

Posts: 5
Joined: Feb 2012

..yes i do want to run away.. i am so embaressed about thinking this way. I do talk to her but the last thing i want to do is hurt her feelings or make her feel guilty.. thank you Fay

Posts: 391
Joined: Jul 2009

Where..and I'll go!

Or marriage stunk before the cancer and notes i'm trapped with someone who never cared about me but i'm suppose to do it all for him..not!

Posts: 1
Joined: Aug 2012

My husband has stage IV cancer and has been on painkillers for over a year. I have a harder time coping with his constant misuse of these pills than I do the cancer. When he takes 2 or 3 times the prescribed amount of painkillers and then runs out...goes through withdrawal, or runs to the doctor for more, it causes fights between us. I hate myself for not being more understanding, but it's difficult to cope when he won't talk with me, or lies about how many pills he's taking during the month...I feel so lost and alone, yet guilty at the same time. Am I wrong in thinking he should take the medication as prescribed? Is this just a matter of time until his pain management doctor finds what will work for him? Is it normal for a doctor to just keep filling more prescriptions every time a cancer patient runs out in the middle of the month?

LeeandShirley's picture
Posts: 122
Joined: Apr 2011

Dear specialist,
I, too, get angry and frustrated at all the care I must give my husband. He is stage 4 liver cancer and is uncurable. I have thoughts at times, "Why me"....and, "I hate doing all this by myself", etc. There are times when I think my husband is nothing but a whining baby in his demands for help. I think, "Why can't you do some of these things for yourself, can't you see how busy I am?" I think we all have private thoughts about our partners that we are not proud of. Mostly we keep it to ourselves, because we are so ashamed that we have these thoughts and feelings. I say bravo to you, that you are so aware of your feelings and so open and brave to share them with others. Being a caregiver is hard and there are NO rewards, except that when all is said and done, we have done our best for our loved ones. You must not feel quilty for being human. We all get tired of this horrible disease that has robbed us of the future we envisioned for ourselves and our partners.Just remember that you are really angry at the disease and not your partner. I am sure you love her very much , just as I do my husband. Forgive yourself and let it go.

Posts: 5
Joined: Feb 2012

I also am not proud of my thoughts.. i can't stop crying reading the posts that people have left.. you are all so kind.. you have stated the thoughts that i could not say out loud.. thank you for listening and hearing me.

Barbara53's picture
Posts: 658
Joined: Aug 2009

I cared for my rather high maintenance mother for three years. I flared at her rarely, always wanting to protect her from additional pain, but my private periods of rage were unforgettable. I remember screaming and banging the wall when nobody was at home. I have never felt such extreme anger and frustration ever, and it was about the day to day craziness, not the big picture.

Mom has been gone a month and I'm feeling okay with it. I did the best I could. Wishing the same for you.

jimwins's picture
Posts: 2111
Joined: Aug 2011

Hello and please know you are welcome here.
I agree with what the other have said and you are human.

Make sure you have some time for you to take care of yourself
and have some "normal" space/time. I realize that is very difficult
during these times but caregivers need this.

Sending you big cyber hugs and one helluva
sphincter butt kick to cancer - it sucks.


Posts: 5
Joined: Feb 2012

thank you for taking the time to read this and respond.. i really didn't expect anyone to answer...

Tina Blondek's picture
Tina Blondek
Posts: 1566
Joined: Nov 2009

Hello and welcome. We are here for you to lend an ear or a shoulder any day anytime. We have all been or are currently where you are now. My dad passed from EC and liver cancer in March 2010. My parents and I started a journal. This proved to be extremely helpful to us all. A place to write down your thoughts and concerns. Your innermost feelings. Come here often, it helps. Keep in touch. We will be looking for you!
Tina in Va

mr steve
Posts: 286
Joined: Sep 2009

Dont think for a minute that your alone, I'm mad as hell that getting to grow old together has been shot down in a ball of flames, sitting of the front porch and watching the grand kids play, it aint gonna happen. You cant make your friend feel any more guilty than she already does. She is just as mad and wants to run away just as fast. take the time you have and make the best of it. No one knows when there time is going to be up. be a tuff cupcake and keep on keepin on.

kimmygarland's picture
Posts: 313
Joined: Aug 2009

I didn't start this post, but I needed to hear some of the replies. This is such a wonderful, supportive place.

zinniemay's picture
Posts: 534
Joined: Mar 2009

I have had these feeling then fell guilty for them, I love my hubby we have been married 38 years . I worry what to say and not to say to him, how to make his life comfortable. always a struggle. Some times I feel so alone , this is something I can not talk to our kids about. I know they are hurting too.
I take one day at a time and work on that day. I use hope and humor as my main reason to stay shane in all this.
It is not easy to say what is going on in out heads, sometimes it does not match what is in our hearts. But I think we all get it.
I try to stay positive and just do the best I can do. Sometimes it does not always feel like I do enough .
We all have days we are not proud of. We all have days when we feel like we will break. I remind myself that I love him! He reminds me he loves me. So that keeps us going.

palmyrafan's picture
Posts: 397
Joined: Mar 2011

I am the patient, my husband, my wonderful caregiver of 18 years.

I am not offended by your post. I would worry about you if you DIDN'T get angry at your partner from time to time and/or blame her because of what you are going through. That is normal. You want your "old" life back. No one told you that this was going to happen and yet it did. You have no sense of "normal" and you just want 5 minutes away from all of this. Sound familiar? My husband has his moments too.

Now think about it from her point of view. Her world as she knows it has been turned upside down and it will NEVER be the same again. Oh sure, you can have the therapies and treatments, but she has been violently attacked and there was nothing she could have done to stop it. She feels violated and she just wants her "normal" to return.

I have bad news for the both of you. It ain't happening. Oh sure, you get a "new" normal, but not the old one. But she LIVED. She is a survivor and she is still in the biggest battle of her life. I guarantee you that she doesn't know from one day to the next how she will feel and she feels terrible about it. She wants normal more than you do and she feels terrible because she can't give it to you.

But you can work through the emotions and the bad feelings. I would encourage you to take time for yourself (if you aren't already). Therapy also works wonders. My husband and I go to counseling together and it has helped us tremendously. I would also encourage you to spend some time with people who aren't "in the system". Go to the movies, dinner, museums, coffee house, etc. to get some time with normal people.

I would also advise you to remmeber that your partner did not ask for this and it is okay for you to be angry. Just make sure you remember that it is the cancer you are angry at, not your partner.

JennZieser's picture
Posts: 3
Joined: Jul 2005

My husband and I just celebrated our 9 year wedding anniversary on Thursday. We celebrated by...well...we didn't...he was getting chemo. We've been dealing with cancer for seven years...almost all of our marriage. I get angry at the cancer and am careful to let my husband know that it is the cancer and not him that I am mad at. It's usually the day after chemo that I'm able to let down and get irritated. I love him, I hate the cancer. I guess I'm just saying that your feelings are so normal. It actually was comforting to me to read your post because today is the day after chemo and...well...I'm just getting over being mad about it.

st pete
Posts: 1
Joined: Jun 2012

My husband of almost 18 years was recently diagnosed with stage iv nasopharangeal cancer. We just retired a couple of years ago. This is not how we envisioned our retirement. We moved here a few years ago and have no family or friends nearby. We thought we would be traveling during our retirement. He is finishing his 4th week of radiation with 3 more to go along with 4 more rounds of chemo, but I am afraid of what is to come. He is so frail and having trouble eating and is getting so upset because he has no energy. I am so afraid I won't be able to take care of him properly and I have no one to talk to. I feel guilty for feeling sorry for myself when he is so sick.

grandmafay's picture
Posts: 1639
Joined: Aug 2009

I am sorry that you are new here. This is a site none of us wanted to be a part of. I lost my husband of 42 years after a 6 year battle with colon cancer. Just the word cancer scares us. I can assure you that your feeling are normal, whatever that is. We, too, had only been retired for a short time when Doug was dx. It wasn't and isn't fair, but as I told my kids life isn't fair. You will find that you are stronger than you think. You will be able to do things you never thought you could. And it is ok to feel sorry for yourself. This is happening to both of you. Come here often. There are many who share your feelings and fear. I only lurk most of the time now. Please feel free to PM me. Take care, Fay

Posts: 1
Joined: Jun 2012

My husband passed away on May 31st, 2012 after a 13 year battle with colon cancer. We would have celebrated our first anniversary on June 26th. We dated 20 years ago in college and then fate reunited us three years ago. I knew he was ill but I was determined not to let cancer keep me from the love of my life. I was his sole caregiver and for the most part it was a pleasure. He never "acted" sick and we had a wonderful life together. He was the most incredible stepfather to our three children. In March, the cancer spread to his brain and our world was shattered. He went from surfing, running and biking to being wheelchair-bound. It was a nightmare. I had to shower him, dress him, carry him up and down the stairs, etc. He could no longer even use the bathroom alone. I missed the life we had terribly. I am ashamed to admit it but at times I became very resentful. I was angry at the cancer and the fact that his family did nothing to help us but I took it out on him. I picked stupid fights and complained. I don't think I will ever forgive myself. Since he has been gone, I am completely lost. The guilt I feel is absolutely overwhelming.

Thank you all for sharing your stories. It helps to know that I am not the only one who has felt this way. I hope someday the good memories will overshadow the guilt and sense of failure I am feeling now.

Posts: 1914
Joined: May 2012

Hello all,
I was a caregiver for my Mom for a couple of years...but Dad was her primary. They did get to celebrate their 50th anniversary before she left us. I saw my Father go through some pretty horrific decission making, but he was always so gentle with Mom. Dad never cried lol...yeah right...I would hold him, no words of comfort could console him, he was losing his soul mate. 2 yrs., and his lose is still just as raw...but he is making adjustments. We have a big family....but he says in a crowd of loved ones, he still feels so alone. I want to say you're all so needed, but don't ever try to do the primary thing alone...and when and if ever needed bring in hospice. They were invaluable to all of us...especially Mom. Don't ever let the what if's plague you....they all know down deep how much you cared. I now find myself a cancer survivor...and I think oh Mom....how were you so brave. Now can relate on both plains...but am thinking being on the side of care giving is the toughest. All the warmest wishes and good thoughts are sent to each one of you ! Hugs, Katie

Posts: 2
Joined: Sep 2012

I know this is an old thread but it is nice knowing that I am not alone in this way of thinking. I think being a caregiver is a hard job, I am a mom an army wife and a caregiver to my husband. I hate sending my daughter who is only 2 away because she doesn't understand. When my husband is sick as a dog I feel so bad and when he is hugging the toilet and throwing up so violently it's a are you kidding me type of feeling. I love my husband dearly but I hate the fact that we can't have a normal life together. I hate that my oldest two who are 8 and 6 knows that one day he may die. I get so mad that he may not be there to see the kids graduate highchool or college or just grow old with me. I as a person can only see what is going on but with him having mds on the verge of aml I don't know what it feels like. I don't know what it feels like to have no energy and I don't mind him taking pain meds to be comfortable but I hate it when he is in the hospital and they make high around the clock.I feel like he is being robbed from his career which he is still active duty but they have him on home duty, I feel robbed because I don't like watching him in pain or getting mad because I think he whines more than I do. I hate when he makes me feel like I am not doing anything right and when we argue I feel bad but I have to leave. But when I leave I am so hurt and angry that he calls and wants me to come back but I can't for atleast a day. Some days I want to tell him to quit complaining but I know this is a horrible disease so I just pray to god to help me get through this. I wouldn't wish this on my worst enemy I just want to have a normal life

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