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sweetlady1155

What is the best way to be supportive of my son with cancer.

Posted by @sweetlady1155 in Cancer, Jan 30, 2012

This has been very frustrating. He is 26 now and we are very close. About 2 years ago he has had three tumors removed / diangosed with stomach cancer. He has refused chemo and radiation. He has insurance (BC/BS) but it doesn't cover the treatments. He says he wouldn't get them anyway. He hates to talk about it and refuses for me to go with him to the doctor for his regular tests to see if there is cancer in his system again (PET SCAN?) Most all I know I found out on the Mayo Clinic site since he would talk about it with me. He said he cannot deal with keeping it together if he has to worry about how I am too). He doesn't want to cause me any more pain than is necessary. He doesn't want to be 'THAT KID WITH CANCER". Lately he has been really on edge and I think it has come back and he knows it because he hasn't been feeling well again and doens't want to go back to the cancer doctor. His insurance has raised his rates twice in the last few months because he has refused to get the chemo / radiation. He had to get another job since it is almost 300.00 a month now. I can't help him financially since I broke my back in a car accident (black ice) and get only $465.00 mth SSI. I cherish each day and don't fight with him about the treatments. It is his life, his decision and he quality of life - he made that very clear to me. How can I be supportive in a positive way without asking questions? There are so many variables so I honestly have no idea what he has been told, how bad it is, what his prognosis is, etc. He has changed his life - forgives everyone for everything, spends all his time with family and friends, tries to maintain contact with his absent father and goes to every concert he can when his bands come to town.... Living every day to the fullest and enjoying life. All that is good but it is all the questions and uncertainty that flood over me at night that is making me sick inside. I put on a brave face but when I'm alone... well, I've cried myself to sleep more nights than I want to admit. It has been just the three of us - Him, his brother - 24 - and me for many years - we are all very close. I want to believe it is going to be ok - but I've seen too much death in my family of young people - the fear is always there. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you. I do know I'm not alone in this - way too many Mothers are losing sons... I can grieve later if it comes to that but in the meantime - I need to make his life as good as I can.

Tags: Cancer

lindasusan

Posted by @lindasusan, Feb 5, 2012

Hello Most Precious Situation,
I Feel The Stress and sadness that you and your son are going through, First Thought THat comes to my mind is, Do you and your son have any religious beliefs?
I Believe in God, your son sounds like a beautiful person.
I understand him refusing treatment.
This is why, None of anyone who is born escapes sicknesses or death
Two------ sadly just because a Dr. is a Dr.
Or A Police Officer is a person who is supposed to control Law and Order Or Keep Us Safe
Does not mean they can do their job good or right
We live in a world where for the most we are all at one time or anoTher A vICTOM OF CIRCUMSTANCE

In the ancient days they did not have radiation or chemo treatments
Our ancestors excepted there journey most praying to go to where GOD IS
sOME PEOPLE ARE INFACT SAVED BY THESE HORRIBLE TREATMENTS WITH THE SO MANY BAD SIDE EFFECTS
Than others suffer the bad effects then pass on anyway
THE GOD that I love gives me peace in the fact that this life is temporary That we should make the best of the good days. we cannot change the enevitable and if you keep worrying you will yourself develope health problems The GOD THAT I LOVE AND KNOW WANTS YOU TO KNOW YOUR SON AND YOU ARE LOVED AND VERY BLESSED TO HAVE EACH OTHER THAT THIS LIFE WE LIVE HERE ON EARTH REALLY IS A TWINKLING OF AN EYE NEXT TO ETERNITY AND THAT EVEN IF YOU OR YOUR SON WERE TO LEAVE EARTH IN DEATH YOU WILL BE REUNITED IN A BETTER PLACE. RADIATION IS POISON AND IT KILLS EVERYTHING IN ITS PATH iF BETTER TO TALK TO GOD ASK HIM TO HEAL YOUR SON THIS IS A STRONG TEST OF FAITH YOU AND YOUR SON ARE NOW BOTH GOING THREW BE STRONG ---IF YOU OR YOUR SON NEED A FRIEND I AM HERE I WILL PRAY FOR YOU BOTH BUT YOU NEED TO KNOW THERE IS A MUCH BETTER PLACE WITH GOD AND GOD HAS SCIENTIFIC REBIRTH TO EVERYLASTING LIFE IN A BETTER PLACE FOR ALL THE PEOPLE WHO LOVE HIM AND BELIEVE IN HIM HIS SON JESUS LEFT OUR ANCESTORS SO MANY EXAMPLES WE GO TO THE MOON WE HAVE DR,S BUT WE DIDNOT CREATE THE MOON NOR HAS ANY dR OR EARTH SCIENTIST DESIGNED A PROGRAM FOR ETERNAL LIFE, i do not know your sons name nor yours but look forward to meeting you both---I DO BELIEVE YOU WILL BOTH MAKE IT INTO THE nEW HEAVENS AND eARTH WHERE THERE WILL BE NO MORE SICKNESS WAR OR ANYTHING AS BARBARIAN AS WHERE WE ARE NOW THIS WORLD WILL BE GONE JUST LIKE US THERE WILL BE NO MORE WARS AND KILLIGS AND HATE WE WILL BE IN A BETTER PLACE GOD BLESS YOU BOTH AND HANG IN THERE YES IT IS EASIER SAID THEN DONE BUT YOUR SON IS BLESSED WITH A STRONG COMMON SENSES TELL HIM i APPLAUD HIS COMMON SENCE XO

sweetlady1155

Posted by @sweetlady1155, Feb 6, 2012

Linda Susan - thank you for your reply. Both of my sons are questioning the existence of God, questioning everything. I'm not upset about this because I have taught them to think for themselves and look for the truth. I can only tell them what I believe but cannot give them the faith to believe it themselves. They both are at the stage where they believe we just die and rot away - life goes on. I have had too many of my own experiences with God looking out for me and my family to not believe. You helped reinforce things I know to be true. Thank you!

stephanie79601

Posted by @stephanie79601, Feb 5, 2012

hi....my 24 yr. old daughter has cancer and has shut me out too . It is so hard! I have to go to work now but will come back to this sight and see if we can communicate. Im not real good on computers though. Keep your head up...God bless

sweetlady1155

Posted by @sweetlady1155, Feb 6, 2012

step­hani­e796­01 - I am sorry to hear that you are going through something so similar. I would be happy to share our experiences and maybe help each other through this. God bless you and your daughter as well.

mg

Posted by @mg, Feb 6, 2012

Sweetheart, I literally just joined this website a few min. ago. Upon reading your post,my heart melted. Sometimes as mothers we cannot help our children and I know how helpless that is. However, we do have a loving heavenly Father who loves your boy even more than u do,for He gave His only son to give His life for us.It is hard for us to understand for we have human minds,but He knew your son when he was in your womb and knew his name b4 u named him.
He also loves you and wants to strengthen and comfort your sweet "mother;s " heart when u call on Him.
God is our creator and the divine physcian. Who better to rely and depend on ??
You can know that your family will be on my lips to God for you.
If u have an Assembly Of God church near, call on them, share your story and watch the love that exudes from them as Earthly support.

sweetlady1155

Posted by @sweetlady1155, Feb 6, 2012

MG - thank you for your comment and encouraging words. My father was a minister and then both my parents became missionaries in Panama for 10 years before they came back to take care of my grandparents (he was their only surviving child). I know what you are talking about and believe it as well - but it is my interaction with my son that is causing me to question myself. My reactions to each event he is going through are so important in our future relationship that I feel at a loss to just KNOW if I'm being supportive or hovering too much. I don't want him to close me out completely if I over-react. It is myself I'm doubting. I feel like I have no margin for error at this point.

mg

Posted by @mg, Feb 6, 2012

I have been thinking of your thoughts on hovering or being supportive, and I get ya. It's ironic actually for I consider the same dilemma with my adult children.
We do not want to isolate them and at the same time want them to feel connected / family wise.
I guess it is about knowing when to speak your thoughts in a timely fashion. That's not easy as a mom, for we want to shield them anything hurtful or negative. Then again, it is a part of letting them grow in their own wisdom.
I am delighted to know that u r a woman of faith.
Think of Proverbs 3: 5&6 and it might be a bit easier.
You will be in my thoughts, that u can rest assured.
Mg

anon89071289

Posted by @anon89071289, Feb 7, 2012

Sometimes they have their minds, hearts and all closed and they get sick and tired of being sick and tired! I am a daughter and a mother....i have NEVER written so much as a comment on the internet until now....forgive me if my words are intrusive, my opinion....you go get his butt in the car and tell him not to give up on himself or you... Ask him if the shoe were on the other shoe, how would he feel about you not wanting to try anything that has long proven itself for saving lives! I am sure this isnt without consequence however, i have 3 close relatives that had aggressive cancers....2 of them live....one, sadly, discontinued his treatments without saying a word until it was obvious and too late. Again, children of any age lose their way, he'll we as parents do, however, parenting does not cease after their 18, we need to pick them up and force them to not give up, as I know they will appreciate it later, without need for apologies but to celebrate life and having family that didn't give up....not saying that u have at all....more so mindful of my mother, whom has never seen me or my children as a priority, I have no idea where she is and we haven't spoke in 4 years, I have seen a child off to college, been gravely I'll for years now and think of nothing more than my 6 year olds well being and that of my other "baby" who is in college....and the frequent tears I shed in private unable to understand, even more so since i became a mom, why I was never worthy of occupying any space in her heart and mind...to that end, you are a wonderful mom for worrying about him and for being careful not to invade his personal choices... However, we all have a higher purpose, throw your caution to the wind and do whatever you can to save your son....tough love is the hardest type of love to give but possibly the most rewarding...I could only wish I had a mom who cared enough to do the same when needed. Good luck.

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sweetlady1155

Posted by @sweetlady1155, Feb 17, 2012

JRPR - my heart goes out to you as you have dealt with your mother's seeming lack of interest in you. It is very hard for a person to grow up loving themselves when the people who brought us into this world don't seem to value us enough to treat us like a person. You have taken that situation though and make sure it stopped in your generation! I'm so proud of you for that! You have made SURE that your children never feel that from you... You are the kind of person who betters the next generation by giving of yourself. It is hard to provide something to someone else when you have not experienced it yourself - but you have broken that mold and enriched your childrens' lives. 🙂 The things you said about my situation were excellent points and I thank you for your generous input. 🙂 I'm proud of what you have done and value your opinion.

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kirtleyfamily

Posted by @kirtleyfamily, Feb 13, 2012

Hi, I'M 32 and just joined the website 10 mins ago and you were the first post to pop up. I just read your post and then all your replies & the lump in my throat welled up, followed by tears. I have no advice, just wanted you to know that I think everyone who loves someone with cancer feels the same way you do......HOW CAN I HELP WITHOUT SMOTHERING OR PUSHING THEM AWAY? My dad was just diagnosed with Pancreatic cancer and of course I know the doctor (because of insurance and job security) cannot offer any hope even if they think there is any, BUT my dad listened to everything that that doctor said & I feel he took it to heart and that breaks my heart! I'm 32 and never been married, nor engaged until Christmas and so excited that my dad (Poppa) was finally gonna get to walk one of his daughters down the aisle and also finally observe one of his children getting married. My brother and sister both chose other means of marriage (one eloped & the other went to the court house) and so it was up to me, baby girl, to have a small wedding and have my Pop walk me down the aisle and now.....now I don't know if that will happen! I've been the positive one in my family to hold everyone together & keep my mom and sister and brother's chins up and it's hard to be the strong one especially when you see the older siblings falling apart and being negative! I choose to be positive about this cancer because I KNOW who my Creator is and who my Pop's Creator is and I know He can do ALL things! The truth is, I don't know that he himself has faith nor hope and that just tears me up. I don't want to aggrivate him with positivity neither, but we can't just sit by and do nothing for those that we love sooo much! I think at some point I'm just gonna tell my dad like it is and tell him he doesn't have to like it, but if I have to carry all the faith and believe for healing then SO BE IT, but it sure would help me out if he could have faith and hope that he's gonna be around to walk me down the aisle and to see my future babies born and grow! I seem to only fall apart when I'm at work when there are no eyes on me so I don't have anyone feeling sorry for me cuz I am not the one that's sick, I am THE SUPPORTER and Leaning Post! Ok, I've rambled on and on and gotten no where, but I just wanted you to know that I'm right there with you sister & I'm just as baffled at how to handle them without pushing them away. Thanks for letting me ramble on.

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sweetlady1155

Posted by @sweetlady1155, Feb 17, 2012

Wow - what a warm and honest response! I am grateful you took the time to share with me and be encouraging. I will pray for your father, you and the rest of your family as we all travel this road... My God bless you and yours for your kindness - HUGGS!

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garrykh

Posted by @garrykh, Feb 17, 2012

All of theses replies are thoughtful but my advice is to not overanalyze the situation or your son's motives. I am older than your son and in fact have kids his age. I am also suffering from cancer. I respect his right to do as he sees best as long as he is respectful to those who love him. For myself I worked 3 years and rejected treatment after being diagnosed. I cannot see that it harmed either my prognosis or OS expectations. My situation is "non-bulky" to date. About 6 months ago I found some new lumps and decided to go throughrgery and 8 weeks of chemo which for me did not work. So my decision to delay treatment may have been the best one. I just found out that the treatment was ineffective. I firmly believe in a course of minimum or no treatment as long as quality of life is good. As mine diminishes I may try more options. Your son may or may not be making the best decision, but it is his decision. Respect that. And take him fishing or go to the concerts he loves. We are in fact all dying, some of us just don't know that.

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sweetlady1155

Posted by @sweetlady1155, Feb 17, 2012

Garry - you put things in prespective and clearly know what you are talking about. After watching several family members and friends with cancer - get the treatments - suffer so much from them and then die quickly - I totally understand Zane's decision. I remember saying that that was what I would want to do if ever faced with the same circumstances. I just asked him today if he was still feeling good about his decision and he said yes. I'm so glad that my son and I have such a great relationship that we CAN talk about things open and honestly. I never was much of a game player anyway and this isn't the time to start. I just didn't want to look back later and in hind-sight - see what I could have done better. As it is now - I'm doing the very best I can and i guess that is all each of us can ever do in any situation. I want to thank you for you heartfelt advice. I will add you to my list for prayers and trust that God will bless you for your willingness to reach out and help others even though you are dealing with so much yourself. Thank you!

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garrykh

Posted by @garrykh, Feb 19, 2012

This forum is the first one I have ever been on! Generally these things (cancer) are too complicated to give justice in such a limited agenda. But as to the emotional side I will say quite frankly that I handle it well. I look normal except for weight loss (about 30 pounds) so people tend to not know I am sick. But believe me, sometimes I am sick - very sick. But I do not whine. But other than having to come face to face with my mortality in decisions I make, I don't let it bother me much. Staying busy is the best way to not dwell on it so as long as I can I will stay active. I guess the only advice I can give, for what little its worth, is don't make a big emotional issue out of it. I think that ability comes from acceptance of death. None of us get out of this life alive. Is that really so bad? We have always known from the time we were aware of such things that this life will end eventually, so the situation is not new, just more apparent and immediate.So I hope for the best and live a full life. I am trying to show family, especially my children, by example how a strong person deals with adversity. I may or may not die before others I know but one thing is certain - we will all see our lives end eventually. So why grieve over something we have always known will eventually happen? All my best.

roxie43

Posted by @roxie43, Mar 1, 2012

Hello,
I am so sorry for your families worries. As a mother, I know that no matter how old our children aye they will always be our babies. My advice to you would be to make sure you're being extra good to yourself because if you are not it will be even more difficult to be supportive. Just be you, the mom you have always been and tell him how much you love him and are proud to have him as your son. Tell you you will always be there for him and ask him if there's anything you can do that you have not already done. The mere fact that he knows you love him and want to be supportive anyway you can should ease some of his worries. He is blessed to have you and vice versus. You can also ask him if some type of support group for him or both of you would be helpful. Just make sure you're being good to yourself because he needs you to be strong.....easier said than. Done.
god bless your family
In prayer Rox

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