Support for mums' of BC patients

Hi - just thought I’d put a feeler out to see whether there are any mums out there struggling with their daughter’s diagnosis?

I was diagnosed with a grade 2, invasive ductal carcinoma in June. Had quadrectomy, axillary clearance, three cycles of FEC (about to start three of Tax); which will be followed up with 18 rads and Tamoxifen. My mum is Amazing but has been devastated by this whole cancer malarky and as I have found this forum SO useful I hope that there maybe something out there for her. I’ve had a bit of a search about, but haven’t found anything yet.

Thanks in anticipation

Hi Loocie,
My mum too has and still is struggling with my dx,I don’t know of anything to help her, but I just involved her in my treatment ,she takes me to my chemo appoint and stays with me, I have included her in my visits to the breast clinic.
I know she has been devastated, especially as she felt she let me down.I went to a gp 4 years before with this lump and was told all was ok, when I went back ( to a different gp) 4 years on and was sent in as an emergency, I know she felt she should have nagged me to go back.
Hope you find something as I am sure there are lots of mums out there in our mums position.

Bless you, what a nightmare time you must’ve had.

Thanks so much for replying…I think the journey has been harder for my mum than it has me in lots of ways, but like you I’ve taken my mum to all of my appointments and consultations which she has found useful. She’s managed to arrange some counselling that starts in December, which I am sure will help her too.

Hope that things are going well for you now, where are you at with your treatment? Pretty life changing stuff isn’t it?

Appreciate you taking the time to reply,

speaking as a mum myself and been through the full works all I can say is that I am soooo glad it’s me and not one of my three daughters. Thinking about it now as I write I think it would be a thousand times worse to see my daughter deal with not just the treatment but the fear that a dx brings. So what I am trying to say is yes.I think I would be on my knees if it were them and not me, and I imagine support is very important. Hope you find the support you need lots of love Eileen

My mum is finding it really hard to cope too - keeps blaming herself and wanting to suffer it herself rather than me. I know exactly where she is coming from - I have my own two daughters in their 20’s and am SO glad it is me and not them making this horrid journey. I think we are all doing the right thing in involving them as much as possible. I also find myself making the good days sound better and minimising the bad days to try and help her too. Maybe it helps us in a funny kind of way too by focusing on their pain and hurt rather than our own 24/7 - it can so easily take over your waking life cant it?
Karen xx

HI Loocie,

I truly understand how you and your mum are feeling. Unfortunately, my family have been dealt a double whammy this year. My mum, who is 73, was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer in January. Watching her go through the chemo and rads hell I would have given anything to have done it for her. They do say be careful what you wish for. I was diagnosed with BC in March and telling my mum is the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. I knew it would hit her hard because she knew exactly what I would be facing.

We cried together for a bit then just got on with it. As it happens we have taken a lot of comfort from supporting each other. My point from all this is that I’m sure that by allowing your mum to give support and help she too will take comfort from it.

I’ve had 6 mths chemo, mastectomy, now on rads with herceptin to follow. My mum has since developed secondaries in her brain and had more radiotherapy but her cancer is now stable. It will be a very quiet Christmas in our family this year but we will both be out of most treatment by then and the family are planning a small celebration.

Best wishes for a good recovery

Jan xx

Hi all,

My Mum died of this horrible disease 24 years ago. So my dear Dad ( and my 2 brothers )have really struggled with my diagnosis. I try to include Dad as much as I can, he is a fab. babysitter !!

OC xx

Hi loocie,
i was dx sept 08 grade2 invasive lobular and ductal which had spread into the skin I,ve had snb, mx, 6x chemo and radiotherapy and still on herceptin every 3 weeks and tamoxifen all is well and I’m hoping to get recon next spring.
It has changed the way I view life, I don’t get angry as much with day to day things, if I get held up in a queue I just think sit back things could be worse.I have decided to stop worrying about if’s and maybe’s but focus on setting myself achievable targets in the near future.
I am encouraging my 3 kids to follow their dreams and not wait for a better time as it might never happen.
I hope all is well for you and your treatment is going well,glad your mum has found something hope it helps mine has some very good friends and the family has supported her well.

6 years ago my younger daughter was diagnosed with triple neg BC at 32;
2 years ago she had a 2nd primary in her other breast.

I was desperate for her; ‘it should be me, not you’ etc etc. It all seemed so unfair .

So what happened ? 18months ago I was picked up on a routine mammo Grade 3 stage 3 - so now she has to cope with that as well as her own prognosis.

There is NO family history: we just got unlucky.

My daughter is amazing; she’s gone back to work part-time (as a cardiac nurse) and copes with her 2 young children - her 2nd, very special baby was born between her 1st and 2nd cancers.
She has been a great source of info and support to me; as have my 3 other adult children and even though we live a long way apart.
It is hard - but if you look below the surface, every family has its trouble,…sooner or later. It is the human condition. How we deal with it -that is the most important thing.

Hi Ladies;
Just had to post a comment on this!
My Mum has always been my Mum - but she has become my best friend during all this sh**. She is always there when my Dave can’t be there for hospital appointments, bless her she puts up with all the crying tantrums from me, only last night I was off on one as my hair has started to fall out! you know what she said " Em if I could take this from you for myself I would" - No Mum I don’t wish this on you; but you know what if it was my Lora wiv it I would gladly take it; its a Mum & daughter Luv relationship - I Luv my Mum big time, I should tell her more often!
Em xxx

Hi all

Thanks so much for your posts; eveyone has such moving stories to tell. Like you, I’ve always been incredibly close to my mum and dad, but this has bought us even closer together. They have been with me every step of the way and would love to take this situation away from me. I am left wondering how much families can tolerate (Topsymo, OC and Jan); it sounds as though you have been tested to the eighth degree?

I think the consensus here is that we all love our mums and dads to bits and appreciate them beyond measure :0

My opinion so far is that it seems worse for the carers than the ‘sufferer’ - as you’ve had experience both sides of the coin Topsymo, would you agree?

We’re all so lucky having such an army of support around us - I am sure this has had a beneficial impact on how I deal with the situation.

I really hope that you are all doing well and that it isn’t long before we all move away from this disturbing little chapter in our lives.


Em - loosing hair is something of a nightmare, and if I had a pound for everytime people said…well it will grow back, I’d be wealthy. I found getting my hair cut shorter and shorter helped as the trauma of finding so much hair about the place was harsh. Having said that I’ve coped with the hairloss OK (bald as an egg), but miss my eyelashes dreadfully…just getting the hang of false ones!

The lovely thing about hairloss at this time of year is that Beanie hats are all the rage and no one notices you when you wear one. Buffs are wicked - colourful and easy to wear (, again no one notices as they are kind of funky, but are smart enough to wear on more formal occasions. I’ve had to tell three people recently that I am having chemo as they just haven’t noticed the buffs. When I’ve ventured into the shops no one has stared at me - not even kids, who can be the harshest of critics!

I’ve just had my Ma here for a couple of nights helping me after an op on my wrist (don’t ask!). You’re so right - our Mums need lots of support!

Mum had ovarian cancer 2 years ago and I found it awful - I thought we’d lose her, couldn’t get it out of my head, spent as much time as poss with her and Dad, doing whatever I could. But, of course, she came through the hysterectomy and chemo and everything is good - she goes for 3 monthly checkups, and is a wonderful role model for me. We are very lucky.

I was diagnosed with BC in July, had segmental MX and SNB, but margins weren’t clear, I’m having bilateral mx and recon 2 weeks tomorrow.

We’ve agreed that in so many ways it’s easier to go through it yourself than to watch your very loved ones going through it - so yes, I agree with you - it can feel so much worse for the carers than the ‘sufferer’. We hate the idea of our loved ones hurting. I am so supported by everyone around me - husband, parents, brothers and extended family, and my fabulous friends and feel very fortunate to have them.

Love to everybody going through this - we’ll get there!

River x

Ho Loocie;
I am now bald, and suprising to me, I have coped very well! - I was getting so stressed with it coming out in clumps! - that I daren’t wash it until Sunday, I had my Dave here for support, and it came out in masses, I ended up with a few bald patches. We both said let’s just do it, and we shaved the lot off! - Since then I have been ok, wearing bandana’s during the day @ home. Today I went out in my wig and everyone said how good it looked! - but to be honest I am more comfortable in the bandana’s or my beanie hat. I have decided that the wig is for going out, and the bandana’s/hat’s are for around the house. It is only my Dave that has seen me bald, and that is how it will stay, I don’t want the kids to be alarmed.
Hope all is going well with you & your treatment.
Take care Luv Em xxx