by love_is_strong on Sat Apr 23, 2011 06:09 AM
My boyfriend was diagnoses with Leukemia about a month ago. The doctors said they have never seen someone respond to treatment as well as him. It has still been a rough month for him, along with myself. He is going through so much and adjusting and just going through the ins and outs of dealing with this leukemia. Good news is, he is now in remission. He still needs to continue treatment for up to 3 and a half years.
And through all of this, i find myself feeling distant from him, kind of cast aside. I’m here for him 100% and I’m ready to do whatever he needs from me, day or night. I’m being as supportive as i can, and he knows this. I told him about how i felt like he wasn’t invested in me and I’m feeling distant from him. He told me this was too much. For me to express how I’m feeling through this process is too much. I understand he is going through a lot, but what about my feelings? It’s not like I’m asking to see him every day, or talk to me 24/7. Just communication, i don’t think that’s too much to ask for?
by lucky2havemyboo on Sat Apr 23, 2011 10:12 PM
Check with his primary oncologist, and ask he/she review all the meds your beloved is on -
I've read some medications can cause emotional changes. I remember years ago, even a co-worker who'd had a heart attack was on follow-up meds, and was saying to his wife on the way home from doc app't that he felt numb, didn't care about anything or anyone at that point, and he didn't even care about her. Then he started crying, saying he didn't know why he'd said that. She pulled over, and told him simply "It's the medication you're on." Didn't stop all the angst, but it made all the difference knowing it wasn't him - it was the drugs, which means it's temporary.
So go ask....hope this helps.
by GoldDustWoman on Sat Apr 23, 2011 10:42 PM
No my dear, you are not asking too much. Cancer doesn't impact only the patient - it tortures everyone who loves them. Unfortunately, as the patient, this is sometimes difficult to see. And it's understandable. There is so much fear that comes with cancer - it's just so much to deal with.
My husband was not himself either during his chemotherapy. We've been together 33 years, so I wouldn't say he was distant, but there were certainly times where he was not himself and my feelings were not top of mind for him. I certainly had moments where I felt cast aside, just like you said. Looking back I can see that it wasn't so much from his behavior I felt that - but from my own fear and need to reassurance. In the midst of chemotherapy, he was understandably not in a position to reassure me.
Please know that what your boyfriend is doing and how he is reacting - it is SO not about his feelings for you. He doesn't understand the fear and sadness you are feeling for him. I think a patient thinks that a caregiver is the lucky one. (They're NOT by the way, but it's an understandable emotional reaction.) Just continue to be there for him, when it's appropriate gently remind him that you are afraid and what you need from him (and I do mean gently), and always, always remember that the fear and the feeling like CRAP from chemotheraphy makes a normally giving, thoughtful and caring person turn into someone that you may not recognize. It's ok. That's what the beast C does.
In the meantime, take care of yourself. Your feelings are important too and don't ever feel bad for thinking so. And it is extremely important for his healing that he remain positive, that his environment remain positive, and that he stay focused on getting well.
And you know - I've found that cancer is hard for guys to talk about. I have a friend who's boyfriend had colon cancer - just finished a year's worth of treatment at only 33. This guy was angry, pushing her away, refusing to talk about it, all that stuff. It was hard for her but I just kept reminding her that's his way to cope. Not talking about it - typical male way to cope. Maybe he needs to feel like his life is normal - you know what I mean? Cancer just consumes everything. And in a normal life, we aren't communicating about cancer. I don't get it myself - but I think it's a guy thing.
I wish you both the very best ~ GDW
by love_is_strong on Tue Apr 26, 2011 02:14 AM
Thank you so much for that. Ive been feeling so bad about feeling the way i do. This was very helpful. I guess because of all the emotion in this whole process i lose sight of the fact that im still his girlfriend for a reason. When the time is right i will gently try to tell him my point of view, and possibly gain more insight on his. Again, thank you for this.
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No, but we got a second opinion after we started treatment
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