Cancer diagnosis acceptance


I’m 44 yrs old and scheduled for mastectomy in 2 weeks time. I understand that accepting the diagnosis helps the healing process. I’m wondering how other ladies achieve that . And  if it’s normal that my diagnosis triggered all these insecurities. Basically feeling like damaged goods not physically , I don’t mean cause I’m losing my breast . just cause I now identify as a cancer patient and not a very good company , thinking and talking about cancer . Quite depressing topic… has anyone else felt this way and how to overcome cause it’s poisoning my mind and soul, my relationships these insecurities I have in my head . Any tips much appreciated. 

Thanks for reading 

Welcome to the forum Brigitta !! You are being very hard on yourself , you are dealing with a major trauma in your life both physically and mentally ,how can you be expected to be good company and not talk about what you are going through ? Having a cancer diagnosis shakes you to the core and it takes time to get your head around that . The good news is that you will get to a place where this does not dominate your life . When I first joined this forum 7 years ago I was really surprised to see people having chats on the chemo threads about holidays and nights out , I thought how can they possibly talk about these thing when they are going through cancer but I soon found myself there too . Talking to people here who understand really helps . Best wishes Jill x

Totally agree with the previous replies. Yes it does take over your life and it’s a lot to take on board. Get a good support group around you, family & friends and just take one day at a time. 

It’s exactly a year ago tomorrow since my diagnosis, I’ve done 2 rounds of surgery, radiotherapy and now on tamoxifen. I look back and know it was a tough time but my life now is getting back on track and try to stay positive about the future. 

It’s hard but you can do this! Good luck, we’re all thinking of you x

Hi Brigitta 

Sorry to read you’re struggling. 

Unfortunately I’m on 2nd time around for cancer , had mastectomy with reconstruction 6 years ago on right side . 

Now journey starts again in my left … 

I dealt with my original diagnosis by taking every opportunity available to talk about my experience,  I used this forum to ask questions & read other women’s experiences . I went to counselling & oddly found myself talking about a broken relationship rather than my cancer . 

I went to holistic therapies that was offered free in my area for 6 weeks . 

I didn’t go about telling everyone I met that I had breast cancer but my work colleagues & friends I saw on regular basis knew & initially I could see it was awkward for some people to respond & I guess its because it  is difficult for most people to know what to say but I was fortunate enough to feel confident enough to reassure them I didn’t need them to say anything in particular. 

I’d say reading your post I’m not surprised you have insecurities this is a journey that is out of your control , and like you I had to put my trust & faith into someone else’s hands too … so I’d say yes your diagnosis has triggered them off but you might need to find a way to manage them so the fear doesn’t spiral & cause you more anxiety … please don’t be frightened or embarrassed to speak about how you feel … and yes it’s not a great conversation to have to have with your friends & family but life is full of ups & downs & I don’t believe there’s many people if any who can say every conversation they’ve ever had is a happy positive one…  because that’s just not real in my opinion … its sounds as though you’ve got a big heart & don’t like the idea of upsetting people. … but this is your journey & you’re number 1 … xxx

Hello @Brigitta  

I’m sorry you find yourself on this forum but welcome to the friendliest place on the internet (well certainly on my phone!)

Receiving a cancer diagnosis is something which I don’t think you can ever really relate to until it happens to you: I think we all had some ideas and preconceptions which don’t match the reality. 
Don’t for one minute think that your family and friends consider you not good company at this time, they too are processing that someone they love and care for is having to deal with what lies ahead. 
I would agree with everything said below about how the initial diagnosis absolutely consumes you and your brain simply doesn’t have the capacity to think worry concern itself with anything else, but that will change as time passes.

At this point my advice would be to take one day at a time, be kind to yourself (I don’t really think I knew what “self care” really meant before my diagnosis) and ask for help if you want to.
I found at the time of my diagnosis everybody “knew somebody who…” but it wasn’t until I sat and talked to my friend’s mum who had had the same diagnosis and treatment as me 20 years ago that I really appreciated quite how it affected me. Don’t be afraid to get in touch with any local support groups through Macmillan or Maggie’s I can absolutely guarantee you will meet lots of very kind supportive ladies who will be happy to talk to you: The forum is lovely but as I think we all discovered during lockdown there is no substitute for a conversation in person

AM xxx