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How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

14 REPLIES 14
dancing_girl
Member

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

In addition to all the other advice, remember that you need support too. Maybe go out for a pint/game of golf/snooker/footie or whatever with a friend just occasionally to give yourself a bit of you time. I'm sure your wife will also try to do the same with her friends when she is feeling well.
Stella xx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

Thanks to all for your advise and feedback.
On reading all the comments, I feel that the most important thing is just to be there for my wife, so she knows she is not going through this terrible experience, on her own.
Thanks
pnv

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

Have to agree with RunningDrums post.I coped with my b/c the best way for me was asking my family to go on as normal and i tryed to as well. There was dak days but im coming up to 2 years clear but still having tests. just try and Stay positive it helps Jane x

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

My husband adds,"don't feel guilty when you cant be positive",it's not possible to be positive all the time.For you need support as well and that will be vital for you to remain "strong" during this process.
Traceyx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

Hi pnv,
Am so sorry like us you as a family are having to go through this awful process.
My husband has been brillant with myself and our two children,15 and 21 year old daughters.
he has seen myself and them in different stages of "grief"throughout the last 12 months,we have also seen him in various stages of "strength " and "grief".
The important things seem to be keep communicating and go with all your ups and downs,there will be times of stress but there will also be times of joy and closeness between you all,cherish them and look forward to more in the future.
Be kind to yourself,it will be very hard at times.
Things will be said and done that will be scary and not seem "positive" but that unfortunately is part of the journey your family is on.
I am sure you will come through this together,just by the fact you are asking for advice shows you will be there for the journey.
It is hard to grasp but it will not all be bad.
Love and very best wishes to you all.
Traceyx

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

I think ChoccieMuffin has made some really valid points there -
i agree you do need to be honest and pragmatic as well as positive.

Our situation is different to yours in that I am trying to support my mother through her illness, but we have 3 small children 3, 5 and 8 whom we are trying not to hide things from, but at the same time not wanting to upset and distress them unnecessarily either. If they see us as coping whether upset or not, then they seem to cope with it all too.

Saying that, my 5 yr old doesn't like seeing his nanna at the moment as she does look so poorly. They all know that nanna is not going to get better, and that whatever questions they have I will do my best to answer, be it "where exactly is heaven?" or "why is nanna's hair gone thin?".

It is a narrow path we walk, but we all walk it together.

ChoccieMuffin
Member

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

I think that just as important as "positive", is "honest".

I'm thinking of how things are with my kids here as I don't live with my partner, but I'm sure they are better knowing that I'm not going to lie to them or try to sugar-coat things, and that when I tell them something, that's the plain truth and I'm not hiding something dreadful from them. They seem to be finding that much easier to deal with than people trying to "spare their feelings". Kids are not stupid and I think they need to know that mum's feeling stressed, or dad's feeling stressed, and they also need to be able to say when they are too. My two youngest are very similar in age to yours (12 and 14) and they appreciate that I have acknowledged their abilities to deal with the full truth and they have been completely brilliant! My 12-yr-old is a bit of a thinker, and when she's asked questions they have been very deep questions and she got completely honest answers. Including "what will happen to us (i.e. her and her sister) if things go wrong?" I was able to answer her honestly (her 21-yr-old sister would step into the breach, but because of the state of my own cancer it was highly unlikely that I'd be dying any time soon, certainly not before the two of them got old enough to look after themselves.) 14-yr-old's way of coping was to say she'd cut off her own beautiful hair if I had to have chemo and lose mine, and despite me trying to persuade her not to, she's got her haircut booked for 23rd Feb and has raised over £3,000 for Cancer Research! Her way of fighting, I suppose, and I'm very proud of her.

I have cried and sobbed and completely fallen to pieces in front of both of them (right after diagnosis, we've got our heads round it all a lot more since then) and I have apologised to them afterwards for "losing it", and they hugged me and said it was ok and they understood how frightened I must be.

We still have our normal parent/child rows and they are, in their way, a relief.

Every family is different and your family's dynamics may not be the same, so if my approach of total honesty doesn't work for you, that's fine, you need to find your own best way as a family. I just thought I'd share how we've got through it. Hope it helps.

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

Hi Mate.
When my partner was diagnosed 24 moths ago, my life changed. She was, and still is, very positive. I picked up on this and we both hit the ground running!! Owing to the line of work I am in, time was not a problem and I made every session of Chemo, radiology, every meeting and I was there when she went in for the op, and when she came round. I'll be blunt, some days were hard, very hard, but we kept a positive spin on everything. She will a year clear in March and looking great, as she did throughout. Hats, scarves, wigs, table cloth, cold flannel yes we tried them all and not forgetting humour!
I am now very involved with breast cancer related charity work (Marathon in April..Eek) I chat to other blokes about it and have made some good friends.
Macmillan have some brilliant books for teenagers, I am sorry but I am not sure on BCC's book titles but they may well have some good stuff. Give them a bell or drop an email I am sure they will help.
Keep your pecker up, keep in touch.
RD

Mezzomamma
Member

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

Think of it like this: trying too hard to be positive sometimes comes across as 'I'm not taking this seriously' or 'I've got my head in the sand and I'm keeping it there'. Now your wife probably knows this isn't the case, but she might like to be reassured occasionally that you appreciate how serious and how frightening it is. 'I'm terrified of losing you' is another way of saying 'I love you and you mean everything to me.' You don't need to dwell on this, but it's good to have it said.

Can you talk as a family? The kids need to know that it's normal to feel scared, upset and even angry sometimes.

There will be lots of practical ways you and the kids can help, s you know. And any time she is well and strong enough, you can let her be strong in her role as your help and comforter and as mother. Lots of women feel that on top of everthing else, they are letting their families down. If you've been a doer and an organiser, feeling helpless is horrible.

My best wishes to all of you

Cheryl

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

Hi pnv,
I think you said it yourself...things are far from normal as can be!
Live each day at a time as you both adapt to your new 'normal', there will be good times, laughs and times when you can even forget this whole cruddy thing, and there will be times when you want to scream about how bl**dy unfair it all is.
Just be there for each other and for the kids, be kind to yourselves, take time out if you need, none of us are superhuman and 'don't let this ****grind you down. Enjoy the good days and know that in a few months time there will be more good days and better to come.
Hugs to you all
Suze x

Lulu34
Member

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

hi pnv

i dont think you need to stay positive all the time... sometimes its good to just stop and scream and shout and cry about how unfair it is.

i think talking about it and telling your wife how you feel about it will help her too.... i sometimes felt my partner didnt care cos he never said anything and tried to be almost too supportive and afraid to come near me like i was so fragile he was too scared id break and that just made me feel really isolated and eventually drove a wedge between us.... i just wish my partner had been honest and told me how he felt at the time instead he kept it to himself trying to be brave and it eventually came to a head and we separated a few weeks ago.

its only now that he is talking about it but its all a bit too late....

this is just my personal experience and im sure lots of people on here will have very different experiences from mine.

love and hugs
Lulu x

Jo_BCC
Member

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

Hi pnv

Welcome to the BCC discussion forums, as you can see you've come to the right place for some good support both for yourself and your partner. If either of you would like to talk to someone in confidence then the staff on the helpline here will be only too happy to help. Calls to the helpline are free, 0808 800 6000, open M-F 9-5 and Sat 9-2.

Anything you need to know, just ask and someone will be along to answer you.

Take care,
Jo, Facilitator

Everton_babe
Member

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

Hi Priv
Sorry bout your situation. I suppose what works for one, wont for another. My partner found dealing with my DX difficult as he felt he had to be 'strong and positive' for me. I realised this was taking a huge toll on him, especially as we dont live together and he's over 200 miles away.
Anyway, I found telling him that he didnt need to keep strong shoulders all the time helped.We had some honest chats about the future and agreed to accept the tears(from each other) as an inevitable part of this sh**y disease.
It sounds like you have a good relationship and you very obviously care about keeping it all together. Can you turn to friends/family for support? Maybe counselling with a complete stranger will be the answer.
I think we have to adapt to a new 'normal'. One that accepts we have difficult times ahead and cry/talk/hug together.
Many best wishes to you all
Cathie x

Guest user
Not applicable

Re: How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

hi, i aws dx in sept last yr and having chemo but i have also been in your place my hubby was dx with a highly aggressive brain tumour at 36 our children were aged 7, 10 and 13 i nursed him all through treatments but we knew we were only buying time i was devastated but u will cope be open with your wife and children found crying in the bath helped but also let them know it hurt too but kept routine going for them my hubby passed away at home aged38 that was just over 8 yrs ago i have remained single and my kids are my life and now we face this and i am finding it hard to be strong sometimes on my own as such but be strong and hopefully your wife will do great just give her lots of hugs take care love to u all rachel x

Guest user
Not applicable

How can I stay "Positive" for my family?

This is my first post and am looking for advise from those who have been here already.

My wife has just had her 46th Birthday and we have two children aged 14 and 11. She was diagnosed with BC late November last year, has had a lumpectomy and positive nodes removed. the Tumour was, 2.5cm, Grade 3, Stage 3B, triple negative and she has just had her second course of AC chemo.
We have experienced both together and individually, every emotion possible,and then some, but we get great strength from each other.

I am finding my biggest challenge is how to be and stay "positive" for my wife, the kids and myself. It is trying to carry on life as "normal" when things are as far from normal as they can be.

Am I unique in trying to achieve this, or should I be coming at it from a different approach?