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Breast cancer and depression

16 REPLIES 16
Evie-S
Community Champion

Re: Breast cancer and depression

@Angelmoubjr33 - I know we have chatted on your other thread “Struggling”, but I just wanted to make sure you had found the link to Someone like Me that I posted there. In case you didn’t see it, here it is again, I agree with @Amy1988  and @LouJP that it would be worth looking into - https://breastcancernow.org/information-support/support-you/someone-me-telephone-support?_ga=2.70082... 

If you can, try to take one day at a time, or even one hour at a time, and do talk to your team and get some extra help and support. Hugs, Evie xx

Angelmoubjr33
Member

Re: Breast cancer and depression

  • Hi I would love to talk to you privately.  I'm having my 3rd chemo today.  I get really bad tummy woth the chemo and horrible leg and hip pains . I have had a lumpectomy and lymph node biopsy and radiotherapy now another 18 weeks of chemo then got to go on to have a double mastectomy and Overy removal because I found out I have the brac1 gene.  I am really struggling mental health wise I wasn't doing to bad until I started chemo now it's all started to go down hill I'm convinced the chemo is going to kill me I know that sounds daft but that's what's in my head.  I suffer with health anxiety and every little pain ache I think is bad its driving me mad xx
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LouJP
Member

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Hi

I would definitely recommend the Someone Like Me service and definitely reach out to the BCN nurses - they are so supportive, great listeners and can hopefully suggest some things to help

xx

Amy1988
Member

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Hi angelmoubjr33. I'm sorry to hear what you're going through. How are you finding the chemo so far? I've now had my surgery and radiotherapy but they've put me on a new form of chemo, kadcyla. I will be on that until the end of November! Mental health is really affected by all of this. I think when I was first diagnosed, I just wanted to get all the treatment done but I ended up neglecting my mental health and it's really catching up with me now. I remember my oncologist saying to me, not to think too far ahead, so just focus on one treatment at a time because otherwise you overwhelm yourself. The nurses on here are really good to talk to and they also have 'someone like me' (I think that's it!) So you get put in touch with somebody who is going through similar to you. Also, Macmillan and maggies are good places to seek support too and you can check to see if you have a local centre near you. Have you got plenty of support from family and friends? You can always talk to me privately if you want too, just send me a message. I hope the next round of your chemo goes well 

Angelmoubjr33
Member

Re: Breast cancer and depression

I'm currently going through breast cancer and about to have my 3rd chemo out of 21 I am really struggling with my mental health and just wanted to know how you got through it any tips and or advice would be great 

 

Amy1988
Member

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Hi. Thank you for your message. I've been feeling low again lately. I'm on docetaxel now (last round tomorrow!) and I get so upset about the smallest things and I cry a lot too. I think this chemo has affected my mood more than the other lot I was on. I would love to get a hobby, but I don't know what I want to do lol. But I think its something I will look into more. To keep my mind busy. How is your friend now? 

chased111
Member

Re: Breast cancer and depression

My friend had the same problem and he found a new hobby. He started gardening. He has never done this before and it was and it is really exciting for him even now. He lives with an idea to grow something new and it helps him. He is just looking for any information about growing new fruits or vegetables, something like this https://akgardenexpert.com/how-to-propagate-string-of-bananas/ and do this. If you will also find any hobby that will take all of your attention you will probably forget about everything and you will be in a good mood. Think about this. 

Mai7
Community Champion

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Amy, hobbies that can get you to focus are a good form of mindfulness.  Keeps you in the moment.  I’m doing much better since I had my first reconstruction and I’m 2 years NED.  It takes time and I’m a really good example of someone that didn’t bounce back quickly.  Physically I did but mentally I struggled.  Just keep taking small steps.  That’s all you have to do. X

LouJP
Member

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Hi

Good to be in touch - no my hand is lymphodemea (I think but need the proper diagnosis) so swelling and pain - side effect to having lymph removal - will always have to be careful with that arm now - no injections, blood pressure etc in the left arm and watch for cuts, bruises etc. - I have full movement but it makes me miserable!

I totally get how you feel about the op but I didn't wake up during it and it was a very odd feeling too when I did and they spoke to me as it was like those couple of hours had just disappeared - I did also let the staff know I was anxious beforehand so I would recommend doing that too.  It's routine to them but not for us.

I was fortunate only having the lumpectomy but am awaiting genetic testing results so may face more surgery but trying to not think about that yet.

Yep get on Netflix (I resisted for a long time) - mine wasn't chocolate but ice cream - always some in the freezer.

xxx

 

 

Shi
Community Champion
Community Champion

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Hi Amy, ❤️ Another thing I did before op way say bye to my boob as I knew it, gave me some closure if that make sense then when bandages came off and when I was ready said hello to my new body. I’m still not levelled up but that’s my choice at the minute, I might change my mind, I don’t know but you will look back and think wow I got through that ❤️ Step by step Amy ❤️💕💕Shi xx

Amy1988
Member

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Hi mai7. Covid has made this awful journey for anyone 10x more difficult. I would love to go out more but im constantly on edge about people getting too close to me. And i do the brave face too, people say im coping well but deep down im terrified. I worry about how i will feel mentally after a mastectomy too. Its a big change. I do wonder if the chemo is making me feel more depressed, but i need to get into the habit of taking my antidepressants. Im sorry to hear about your experience. How are you now? I might take up a hobby at home, so i have distractions. Thanks for your reply

 

 

Amy1988
Member

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Hi loujp. Thanks for replying. Is it cancer with your hand? I hope they can sort it soon for you. Physically im feeling ok but mentally im all over the place! Some days i just get on with it but others, it all hits me and i still can't believe its happening sometimes. Im such a wimp when it comes to the op! I think about things like waking up during it or not coming round. And then theres after. I really want my breast/s gone because of whats in them but i get upset at the thought of losing them too. It is lovely being able to talk to others on here, i feel like we all understand each other. Ive spoken to a lady from 'someone like me' too and thats good to have. And a good series and chocolate will defenitly help too lol. I hope you're doing ok 

 

Amy1988
Member

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Hi shi. How are you? You always have good advice to give! I was put in touch with 'someone like me' the other day and it was nice and helpful. Ive got to get into a routine with my antidepressants, i know they would help relax me. I try not to think to much about the op, but its hard not to sometimes! Thanks for your reply

Mai7
Community Champion

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Hi Amy1988, Sorry you’re feeling low.  Your emotions are completely understandable and normal given what you are going through.  The cancer journey is scary and you’re going through it during COVID.  I had a terrible time with depression after my diagnosis in 2017.  I had 8 rounds of chemo.  The Docetaxol made me feel very low at times and so did the mastectomy.   I think we put on brave faces for ourselves and those around us but being strong gets tough at times.  My escape is getting out for a walk in nature.  I always feel good when I’m out walking.  If you can find something which helps you to escape the thoughts a bit then you can focus on getting through the physical stuff.  As Shi suggested, perhaps consider calling Breast Cancer Now for a chat.  Let us know how you’re getting on. Sending hugs. Xx

LouJP
Member

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Hi Amy

My heart goes out to you - I started my journey in January and most of it was through covid and last Friday after chemo, surgery (lumpectomy and full lymph removal) I finished radiotherapy.

I totally get how you are feeling - I don't generally suffer with depression but a cancer diagnosis and all the related treatments play with your body and your mind for sure.

You have done right joining this forum, I started to really use it after surgery and log on now most days just to see what the latest is and respond as and when I hope I can add value or start a new thread if like you I need support.

I've reached out to both the Breast Cancer service and Someone Like Me and would recommend both.

I'd never had surgery before and was somewhat terrified (even getting them to confirm when I was in theatre I definitely wouldn't wake up during the process which of course I didnt) but I was well looked after, came out with a drain and was then looked after by some lovely district nurses.

I'm waiting for my own team to call me as now have lymphodema in my hand which is getting me down but am hoping once I get the referral sorted, we can start to help that.  Post treatments finishing am feeling very emotional - like a comfort blanket has been taken away but that's all normal too apparently.

I've had a number of friends who have been through breast cancer but until I embarked on my own journey, had no idea how they really felt but now I do, don't stop talking to your family or anyone else and us on here.

Oh and my latest recommendation is a real cheesy series on Netflix with some eye candy - solves nothing but pure escapism from any reality for a while.

Much love

xx

 

Shi
Community Champion
Community Champion

Re: Breast cancer and depression

Hi Amy ❤️ Chemo can impact on mood Amy, please phone the number on here and use the ask the nurse or someone like me option. Step by step a day at a time you will get through. For op get short sleeve button front pyjamas, dressing gown with big pockets and a tie bit on the inside (for the drains if you are having them) pair of flip flops for in hospital hand cream, lip balm, anosol (operation meds can bung you up) for me I had op first and it was doddle compared to chemo, rest up properly after op, do you exercises and take it steady no heavy lifting hoovering or anything like that, you allow your body to knit back together❤️ Do discuss with your team too because they could give you something to calm you if needed before op ❤️ Hope this helps a bit 💕💕Shi xx

Amy1988
Member

Breast cancer and depression

Hi. I was diagnosed with breast cancer in june. Im currently on my 2nd round of chemo and the side effects haven't been too bad. Ive just been feeling really low lately. Ive got anxiety and depression anyway and ive got antidepressants (which i struggle to remember to take) but sometimes i struggle to cope with all this. Im seeing my consultant 22nd sept for a check up, i really hope the chemo is working. Then, if that works it will be surgery. Im terrified about it, ive never had an operation before and i think about if something went wrong. I just wanted to speak to others, i talk to my family but, of course, they don't really understand. Sorry for the long and depressing post! Its just one of those days