Do you people tend to be dismissive beacuse it's ONLY thyroid cancer??

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Do you people tend to be dismissive beacuse it's ONLY thyroid cancer??

by Joe_Joe on Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:00 AM

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Fellow Survivors,

 

I hope you are well.. or for the most part coping as best you can.

It greatly relieves me that our type of cancer is ‘the nicest’ to have and is so readily curable…Unlike so many other cancers that require chemo/radiation.

 

However, cancer is a word that carries a heavy burden and once afflicted, it can be a painful and emotional journey.

 

It troubles me though, that so many people (who aren’t afflicted) tend to be blasé, nonchalant about this because it’s ‘only’ thyroid cancer!!

 

 

Cancer … cancer…sometimes it’s hard to sleep at night with the word rolling around in my head..

 

Please do not misconstrue what I say. I value how incredibly fortunate I am to have a cancer that responds so well to I131/RAI… I’m currently in the isolation room of the oncology ward undergoing my RAI as I type this. I hear patients with far more incurable cancers crying out in pain at night, heard the sobs of a wife on Tuesday night as her husband slipped away..and watch as a 7 year old who has had a barrage of chemo walk bravely outside my window with his drip in tow. I know I am blessed and I fall to my knees in gratitude… But I would also the value the respect and recognition that all cancers deserve..

 

Has anyone else had this experience of Thy/Can been made light of by others. For some reason, maybe its because I’m hypo crashing and low.. I find this to be insensitive??

 

Would love to hear what you may also have experienced;)

RE: Do you people tend to be dismissive beacuse it's ONLY thyroid cancer??

by Joe_Joe on Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:00 AM

Quote | Reply

 

On 2/21/2009 Joe Joe wrote:

Fellow Survivors,

 

I hope you are well.. or for the most part coping as best you can.

It greatly relieves me that our type of cancer is ‘the nicest’ to have and is so readily curable…Unlike so many other cancers that require chemo/radiation.

 

However, cancer is a word that carries a heavy burden and once afflicted, it can be a painful and emotional journey.

 

It troubles me though, that so many people (who aren’t afflicted) tend to be blasé, nonchalant about this because it’s ‘only’ thyroid cancer!!

 

 

Cancer … cancer…sometimes it’s hard to sleep at night with the word rolling around in my head..

 

Please do not misconstrue what I say. I value how incredibly fortunate I am to have a cancer that responds so well to I131/RAI… I’m currently in the isolation room of the oncology ward undergoing my RAI as I type this. I hear patients with far more incurable cancers crying out in pain at night, heard the sobs of a wife on Tuesday night as her husband slipped away..and watch as a 7 year old who has had a barrage of chemo walk bravely outside my window with his drip in tow. I know I am blessed and I fall to my knees in gratitude… But I would also the value the respect and recognition that all cancers deserve..

 

Has anyone else had this experience of Thy/Can been made light of by others? For some reason, maybe its because I’m hypo crashing and low.. I find this to be insensitive??

 

Would love to hear what you may also have experienced;)


Sorry, the HEADER should read: Do other people tend to be dismissive because it's ONLY  thyroid cancer....

RE: Do you people tend to be dismissive beacuse it's ONLY thyroid cancer??

by griz17 on Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:00 AM

Quote | Reply
 Hi JoeJoe, I am so sorry that you have come across people like this . My husband has renal cell carcenoma , and untill this Horrible Disease hit our door step Iwas sorry for anyone that had any cancer but was ignorant to how it effected them both physically and emotionlly . So in your own mind think that these people have not been personally effected by  of any kind of cancer if they were they should understand and if they have then they are just [plain ignorant]      Wishing the best to you  and a cancer free life. Griz17

RE: Do you people tend to be dismissive beacuse it's ONLY thyroid cancer??

by LindaMae on Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:00 AM

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Although SO many people are battling cancer No One really knows unless they have been through it themselves or are caretakers of cancer patients. As so many are having treatment nowadays, those who haven't be touched by this dreaded disease just think. "Oh I'm sorry to hear that" and go on with their normal lives.  They just don't 'know'!

Blessings to all who have this horrid disease! LindaMae 

RE: Do you people tend to be dismissive beacuse it's ONLY thyroid cancer??

by tink2002 on Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:00 AM

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Hi, JoeJoe.  Hope your isolation time is "moving along".  That was hardest for me...

I agree that so many people respond "oh, thyroid cancer" and then push it to the back of their mind.  Indeed, we are very lucky, but at 2 am, staring at the ceiling, I don't feel lucky.  and I can't have a normal conversation with anyone who so readily dismisses this dis ease.... because of that, I find great support on this board.  everyone here understands.  I hope you will find comfort here, because we all need someone to listen and tell us that "I'm sorry you are going through this", or "that must be so hard for you".  stay tuned to this board.  It's filled with wonderful, compassionate, and knowledgeable people....wishing you a speedy "recovery" so that you can once again enjoy your life....{{{HUGS}}}

RE: Do you people tend to be dismissive beacuse it's ONLY thyroid cancer??

by dinparadise on Sat Feb 21, 2009 12:00 AM

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I hope your isolation is going well.  IF you're not experiencing the side effects, then take this time as ME time and enjoy it rather than looking at it as a burden.  It's time you rarely get for yourself!

My friends and loved ones are not dismissive of my cancer.  When I started with painful and annoying side effects six months after RAI, my husband realized that it will be a condition that I will deal with for the rest of my life and he is behind me 100%.

What irritates me is that you will probably find that your own doctors will become dismissive after your treatments.  It's like...you have cancer, they remove the thyroid, you take RAI, you take pills, and YOU'RE CURED!  Wrong!  They don't want to take about side effects you are suffering from like the parotid gland, salivary gland, weak and hoarse voice, dry throat, weight gain, bloating, ear aches, muscle discomfort, fatigue etc. etc. etc...  They act like because you're cured, you'll just have to live with the rest.  I have found not only through my own experience, but also from patients on this board that many of the endos don't even recognize these side effects.  It's no big deal to them.

I am going to fire my endo as soon as I find a good thyroid specialist in the area (West Palm Beach FL).  He said he doesn't deal with side effects; only controlling my numbers.  Not acceptable.  AND he's got the reputation for being one of the best endos in Florida.  I can not imagine why.  Personally, I will not be dismissed.  I want to be treated correctly, and monitored so I don't get any surprises 5-10 yrs down the road.  I WILL find a specialist that respects our cancer!

Feel better and remember that you are you're own best advocate!

RE: Do you people tend to be dismissive beacuse it's ONLY thyroid cancer??

by hornet on Sun Feb 22, 2009 12:00 AM

Quote | Reply

 

On 2/21/2009 Joe Joe wrote:

Fellow Survivors,

 

I hope you are well.. or for the most part coping as best you can.

It greatly relieves me that our type of cancer is ‘the nicest’ to have and is so readily curable…Unlike so many other cancers that require chemo/radiation.

 

However, cancer is a word that carries a heavy burden and once afflicted, it can be a painful and emotional journey.

 

It troubles me though, that so many people (who aren’t afflicted) tend to be blasé, nonchalant about this because it’s ‘only’ thyroid cancer!!

 

 

Cancer … cancer…sometimes it’s hard to sleep at night with the word rolling around in my head..

 

Please do not misconstrue what I say. I value how incredibly fortunate I am to have a cancer that responds so well to I131/RAI… I’m currently in the isolation room of the oncology ward undergoing my RAI as I type this. I hear patients with far more incurable cancers crying out in pain at night, heard the sobs of a wife on Tuesday night as her husband slipped away..and watch as a 7 year old who has had a barrage of chemo walk bravely outside my window with his drip in tow. I know I am blessed and I fall to my knees in gratitude… But I would also the value the respect and recognition that all cancers deserve..

 

Has anyone else had this experience of Thy/Can been made light of by others. For some reason, maybe its because I’m hypo crashing and low.. I find this to be insensitive??

 

Would love to hear what you may also have experienced;)


hi if i had a dollar for every time ive heard i have the best cancer id be very rich  chin up once everything is gone and your feeling better you can sit back and pray to god that your here  good luck be very proactive just because i look good which im told evey day no one knows what im feeling inside  God bless   theresa

RE: Do you people tend to be dismissive beacuse it's ONLY thyroid cancer??

by chc01 on Sun Feb 22, 2009 12:00 AM

Quote | Reply

 

On 2/21/2009 Joe Joe wrote:

Fellow Survivors,

 

I hope you are well.. or for the most part coping as best you can.

It greatly relieves me that our type of cancer is ‘the nicest’ to have and is so readily curable…Unlike so many other cancers that require chemo/radiation.

 

However, cancer is a word that carries a heavy burden and once afflicted, it can be a painful and emotional journey.

 

It troubles me though, that so many people (who aren’t afflicted) tend to be blasé, nonchalant about this because it’s ‘only’ thyroid cancer!!

 

 

Cancer … cancer…sometimes it’s hard to sleep at night with the word rolling around in my head..

 

Please do not misconstrue what I say. I value how incredibly fortunate I am to have a cancer that responds so well to I131/RAI… I’m currently in the isolation room of the oncology ward undergoing my RAI as I type this. I hear patients with far more incurable cancers crying out in pain at night, heard the sobs of a wife on Tuesday night as her husband slipped away..and watch as a 7 year old who has had a barrage of chemo walk bravely outside my window with his drip in tow. I know I am blessed and I fall to my knees in gratitude… But I would also the value the respect and recognition that all cancers deserve..

 

Has anyone else had this experience of Thy/Can been made light of by others. For some reason, maybe its because I’m hypo crashing and low.. I find this to be insensitive??

 

Would love to hear what you may also have experienced;)


I dont know - I think it is about perspective. I was pretty ignorant everything on the medical fields(my excuse - my wife taking care of it) and anything with "cancel" in it is BIG - until the bomb dropped last december when my college daughter was diagnosed with papilary carcinoma(folicular variant). My first reaction was "why her? what not me? At least I am 50. It's time!". I've learned a lot about this cancer since then(still want to know more - trying to take the same approach like my work in troubleshooting application/system problem - and I know it is lot more difficult and uncertain in the field of medicine and human body!)

We've heard about "the nicest cancer to have if you need to have cancer" from my daughter's teacher who've heard from her thyroid cancer friends' doctors. In one way, you can look at this as "dismissive". But on the other hand, what her teacher said make us parents some comfortness.

When I imagine of the situations that my 60-year-old friend went through with her 20+ year-old daughter's 2nd chemo just a few month ago and my ex-carpool colleague went through with his 2-year-old daughter's chemo, I think that I might be "entitled" of the "dismissive" if we switch our position.

So, on one hand, I believe(or at least I am trying to interpret only the good side of human) that their expression was purely trying to reduce the anxiety of their loved friend and I believe that in lots of situtaions, they don't know what to say(because they don't know much about this type of cancer) except quoting words that they've heard from friends' friend's doctors. On the other hand, if they really in the known(their own experience or their closed-loved ones), they are "entitled" to that attitude - under the assumption of "having cancer".

I do believe that lots of doctors having the attitude like dinparadise described. But if there are close to 40K new case of thyroid cancer every year in US(NCI estimate 37340 for 2008 with 1590 death), it is hard for doctors not taking that attitude. Maybe, it is one way that doctors do so that they don't go crazy. When people need to deal with the same thing over and over again, people tends to "insenstize" so that they can still function normally in that position.

 

 

RE: Do you people tend to be dismissive beacuse it's ONLY thyroid cancer??

by tink2002 on Sun Feb 22, 2009 12:00 AM

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Caregiver, I understand your position.  You have to remain upbeat because it isn't you.  WE have to be aware of, understand, and think about all the stuff - good and bad so that we follow through on all the therapy and many scans, etc.  And sometimes, we need to be able to go to someone and unload.  Our concerns are real.  Cancer is bad.  Yes, we are lucky this is treatable, but along with cancer come many other worries.... re-ocurrance, other cancers, side effects from treatment, and so on.  As soon as someone dismisses my cancer, they have dismissed my right to be worried or be sad. I can't talk to them about what is most important to me. Then, those feelings just keep growing in side me until I feel very scared and very alone.  

Of course, we are all different.  Maybe there are some that don't feel this way.  I hope your daughter is doing well??   Good luck to you both.

RE: Do you people tend to be dismissive beacuse it's ONLY thyroid cancer??

by Tavish on Sun Feb 22, 2009 12:00 AM

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Hi all, great discussion. I can understand the anger over dismissive attitudes, cancer is still cancer. But the thing to keep in mind is that this cancer is hardly fatal, but it has longstanding side effects and complications that can arise. I think of it as just a chronic illness, that pisses me off....but a chronic one that will require lifelong management and awareness.

But...I have tended to be dismissive of it myself. In 1999, a week before turning 30, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I had surgery, chemo and radiation therapy. I have seen a lot of women die needlessly, leaving young kids and families behind. For me, having had a lethal form of breast cancer and certainly making me realize my own mortality at much too young of an age, thryoid cancer really is "the best kind" to have. I've had many anxiety filled moments of trying to determine the cause for that ache or this pain, waiting for news of my fellow sisters' test results and watching the heartache that often follows.

I get that it is still cancer....and it can scare the crap out of a person...but in the scheme of things, it is more of a nuisance. It is life altering, and we each handle that differently. Try to keep it in perspective....cancer is not a good word or disease, no matter what, but some cancers are easier to treat and just not quite so life altering. Whatever you are feeling, allow it to run its course, take time to absorb the news, deal with the changes, accept the news, but then go into fight mode and don't look back. This is beatable!

Lori

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