Need a friend

Was diagnosed last year with estrogen positive breast cancer.Dealt with it all to well now it seems to have hit me quite hard.Am currently on Arimadex and zoladex injections. Hot sweats are a problem.Any suggestions on how to combat them? Lack of libido is a major problem between my husband and i(we are both only 40 and did have a good sex life)i suppose i blame my appearance too as i certainly don’t look or feel attractive. Has anyone else experienced delayed reaction.
I have friends who look out for me but not talked in detail to anyone?
Is there a friend out there

Dear niptuck

Welcome to the forums, I am sure the other users will be along soon with valuable support and advice for you. Breast Cancer Care have written a range of publications, some of which you may find helpful to read, you can browse the range via the following link and order or read any which you feel may be useful to you:

We also provide a service called ‘Peer Support’ whereby you can be put in touch, by telephone, with someone of a similar age and/or diagnosis to you so that you are able to gain support from someone who has an understanding of how you are feeling. You can find out more via the ‘Support for you’ tab at the top of this page or by contacting our helpline on 0808 800 6000 which opens Mon-Fri 9am-5pm and Sat 9am-2pm.

Best wishes

Breast Cancer Care

Thanks lucy.
I know there are people out there with the same issues,it will be great to talk things through.

Here is a friend… babble away. Can’t say I find myself very attractive either… bald, dumpy, one boobed…

Everything that has happened over the past year hit me like a speeding train a few weeks back… I am living on the edge of the pit of despair alll the time… the only things keeping me from jumping in… my husband and children. I do weep on my own LOTS though.

BIG huggles to you xxx

I know what you mean was just sittin listening to the radio to try and chill,then what song comes on… The drugs don;t work by the Verv,good song but not what i need just now. I cry almost every day try to be positive but its soooooooooo hard,especialy when the first thing you see every morning is a large scar and 1 rather large breast.
Bigger hugs back xxxxx

Hi niptuck and babyboo,

I haven’t had quite the same treatment as you have because I am triple negative but I do recognise the blacker moods. I am so sorry though that you find you have these most days.
Can I share what has helped me? I have found some really good novels to read and have been totally absorbed in them - for hours sometimes. I have just finished Shadows and Strongholds by Elizabeth Chadwick it was brilliant and for several hours over this week I can honestly say it felt like the time before I was dx’d.

I truly hope tomorrow will be brighter for you both.

Sending you both positive vibes

Howdie Folks,

I have felt very low since finishing my chemo and starting the Zolodex and Arimidex, also slogging through radiotherapy. I think part of it is the hormone therapy and part that end of an ordeal feeling. Remember spending weeks revising for exams, sitting the things then that slump, that comes after? i had been so positive during chemo it is a shock to feel so down,

My lovely radiographer told me to go to the Macmillian centre at my hospital. They have free counselling - it was great just to be able to tell someone how awful I feel. Felt much better after. It is so hard because people just expect you to suddenly feel better. If one more person tells me they know person X who had exactly what I had and they are OK I think I might scream!!!

as you can see you are not alone
Loads of hugs Swanie

Hi there,
I was diagnosed 2 years ago and was doing really well, but have just come out of a really down few weeks. I’ve found every now and then out of nowhere I feel very tearful and down. Me and my hubby have had some real heart to hearts trying to deal with my poor body image (post masectomy and putting weight on!).
I also felt quite a pressure to be ‘better’ and none of my friends really get that for me and my hubby although my cancer has gone we’re still coming to terms with living with whats happened and what might happen in the future - hope that makes sense.
The good thing is though these low periods do go. I’m feeling much better and more positive again - I think its something that will keep happening and hopefully will get better at dealing with it.
Take care, and keep talking it helps lots,

Hi niptuck

Firstly you are NOT alone. I was dx 20 months ago and have hardly been out of despair, except oddly enough during chemo.

Concerning the hot sweats then a few suggestions. Get a Chillow - I have one and use it on my back when watching TV or sitting at my desk. Some people manage to sleep with them but I couldn’t get comfy. Avoid hot drinks - rotten I know but tea/coffee sparks them off for me so find a nice cordial/squash, I like elderflower but there’s a huge selection out here. In terms of drugs then you’re limited due to BC but I take Clonidine - it is used to treat high blood pressure and migraines but it does help “the hotties”, I take around 16 a day - I lose count sometimes because my memory has turned to sh*t during the “BC experience”. If you are really wet, and I mean dripping 24x7 then Olivia07 can recommend Pro Banthine which works well but give you a dry mouth, can always suck sweets but then cancer likes sugar! Chew gum … It is also worth noting that many anti-depressants can help with the hotties - Effexor is one that I’ve heard does this and if you ask your GP I’m sure they’ll come up with others.

In terms of herbal stuff then be careful, no Red Clover, Black Cohosh or St John’s Wort, probably more. You cannot have plant oestrogens. I tried Mulla Mulla - Australian Bush Flower Essence - which was recommended by one of the BCC peer supporters but the jury is out and at £10 a small bottle the jury will stay out but it has NO plant oestrogens in it.

I don’t know if there are any foods which help but when I visited the Breast Cancer Haven I saw a medical herbalist who gave me a list of good things to eat, mostly common sense, but it included linseeds, seaweed, quinoa and all kinds of low glycaemic foods.

I just found the handout - for low libido eat oily fish, avocado, nuts, seeds esp pumpkin, foods high in Vit C and Vit E. Oh, and for vaginal dryness (can’t believe I’m typing all this) “a cream made of infused marigold oil and Vit E oil can improve vaginal tissue”.

Good luck and keep your cool!

Hi all,
I was diagnosed in Nov 04 with DCIS and had a WLX in Jan 05 followed by rads. Later that year I had ‘orange peel’ in the other breast:( one stage 2, two benign and lymphs affected - great year! Had mastectomy, chemo and rads. Followed by Arimadex and Bonefos.

Now apart from the shock and the OMG of the second diagnosis I felt I coped with things really well - i think - anyway, it is now that I’m feeling down and weepy just like you Beckymac. Tell me does anyone get to a point when they are talking and can’t get the words out?

As for feeling sexy… i try I really do, i say to myself I will feel sexy, attractive, make the first move, why doesn’t it work?
Perhaps having three teenagers in the house has an impact as well, can’t really drape myself over the work top in the kitchen any more (did I really say that - to perfect stranger too, what a hussy )

It has got to the point that when I’m feeling low I take myself off for a shower and have a really good cry, the family can’t hear me in there, sounds a bit like ‘they can’t hear you scream in space’ what film did that come from?

There I go again, off on a tangent. As for hot flushes, don’t get me started, i could glow for England.

What I would really like to say is this, ladies we are special in a way that no one else will ever understand. We have coped with one shock after another, filled ourselves with Chemical cocktails and radiation of our own violation (remember those forms we signed!) and kept smiling for those who mean so much to us. I think we are allowed every now and then to feel low, it’s natural, If we didn’t we wouldn’t be able to come out the other side and smile again.

love to all

Thanks Girlies
So glad to be able to talk to people who have been through and are going through similar problems. Becky I have the exact same issues,husband is a boob man(all men are i hear you say)but he loved my boobs and now one has gone no matter how much reassurance he can give me it wont sink in.Dalhia thank you for all your info especially vaginal dryness… only joking it was all interesting and i will definitely give some a try.Carol i love reading to but like all the gory stuff like Patrica Cornwell Jeffery Dever etc,probably not the best stuff for getting out of the depths of despair.Swanie i know where your coming from everyone who i speak to says the same thing but i really think everyones individual problems are similar but not the same if you get my drift,but its good to talk.Feel there is light at the end of this dark dark tunnel thanks girls.

You are spot on we are special and the crying in the shower been there ,another good one go for a drive turn the car sterio up and scream for Britian.
better at night as know one can actually see you.Does anyone have any good sleep aids? tried Nitol but it makes me have fidgety legs and feet.
Niptuck xxxx

Niptuck, thanks, My husband is a boob man too, well was,no still is, he’s just unsure if he should still touch or if its wrong if you get my drift.

Whislt we are on the topic,.has anyone had a nipple reconstruction? and did it help with your perception of your body image? Just that I’m going to see the consultant in Nov and was going to raise the subject with him. My implant was designed to leave the filling port in , however it is in an awkward place - right where the bra sits under the breast - and we are going to discuss having it replace, has anyone experienced that?

lots of questions, must be the time of night, I get verbal diarrhea.

Niptuck have you tried meditation/ not the full blown one, just try concentrating on your breathing and nothing else. literally say in your head ‘breath in, breath out’ it works for me.
I get twitchy legs as well and haven’t found a cure for that though!

Hi Ladies,

Just caught up with this thread. There’s an article called ‘After the Treatment Finishes - Then What?’ It details how it is so normal to cope all the way through treatment, and then not cope afterwards, just when everyone is expecting you to get back to normal. The link is:

It’s quite a long article, but well worth it, and it is useful to print off to show to nearest & dearest. It articulates what we are going through much better than we can ourselves. (Especially now we can’t get our words out).

Niptuck - I find camomile tea helps, I always have a cup at night. And like Dahlia mentioned, I have a chillow (I got mine from Amazon). I found it a bit hard and uncomfortable to begin with, but I’ve got used to it and sleep on it every night. It definitely helps.

Will give chillow and camomile tea a go. thanks for that.
Im still waiting to get word of my reconstruction.Saw the consultant back in july could take up to a year for it to take place.Havent really thought of nipple reconstruction.
But would appreciate any opinions.

Hi Niptuck,
Firstly, mega big hugs. Know exactly what you’re going through. Feel totally ugly at the mo. Waiting for rads and have seroma golfball under my arm!
But remember there are lots of lovely girlies out here in virtual land to help guide you through don’t be alone, we’re all in this together. As for the hotties a chillow is the way to go, that and a fan.
Keep smiling (it makes others suspicious of what your up to!! )

Neverenoughtime et al

A few times I’ve refered the CCT article, per RoadRunner, it is WELL worth a read and written by a very perceptive man. When I read it I felt as if I’d written it myself.

My implants have the filling ports at the side and one is definitely awkward under a particular bra BUT the deal with my surgeon is that when sufficiently inflated etc. under local they get “topped” and sealed or I can (I definitely bl**dy will) have these implants replaced by something that isn’t like having two saucers shapes on your chest which will be the right size when they go in and therefore not require inflation or any more “handling” nonsense - I have had my fill of being handled.

I don’t cry, I cycle and it feels good.

Thanks Road Runner

Have just read the article. It was really good. Long, as you say, but good! Julie.

Yes, Thanks Road Runner I too have just read the article.

The message is powerful and like D I felt it was me to a ‘t’.

Hi niptuck,
I had a haircut today in preparation for chemo so my heads not bad, I even managed to keep the prosthesis in all day. As for libido, well that took a plunge months ago, I am lucky I have an understanding husband and we enjoy our hugs. In response to your reading matter I couldn’t stand anything too gory, the book I just read was bad enough, knights getting lanced through chainmail YUK.



Hello Niptuck, sorry I haven’t posted to you for some time…been feeling a bit low myself so wanted towait until a ‘good’ day to send you a super dooper mega hug {{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{Niptuck}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}.

Looks like everyone responed…good thing with this board, one cannot be down for too long!

Hope you are feeling more positive and that we are of some use.

Thinking of you xxx