Therapy/counseling : Hello, Anyone on... - Prostate Cancer C...

Prostate Cancer Caregivers

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Cleodwoman profile image
16 Replies


Anyone on here seeing a therapist or counselor to help navigate your situation? Is your parter? I believe that by nature, men tend to avoid seeking help from a therapist. I was seeing a therapist but it felt like all I did was sit there and cry. I’m debating if I should give it another try. I don’t want to talk about things…but when I think of his last breath, I just want to cry and I wonder if that’s something I will forever have with me. After all, we are all going through something traumatic.

16 Replies
Scoofer33 profile image

Once again, your musings have moved my emotions, whatever emotions exist in this hard casing. After my father died in a global pandemic (14th person to die of COVID-19 in Oregon), I found it hard to process the loss. I saw a counselor with the goal of getting myself to cry( which I'd only done once since 1976). One year later I had produced one single tear from my left eye and later one tear from my right eye. I sensed that this was the best I was going to do, so I called this success and left counseling. I hope you find what you need.

Cleodwoman profile image
CleodwomanModerator in reply to Scoofer33

I’m sorry to hear about your dad. I’m glad you tried counseling. At least we tried it. But I felt the same way you did…this is as good as it’s going to get. Thank you for continuing to fight.

Bethpage profile image

I am currently seeing a psychiatric nurse practitioner not for talk but for aid with sleep. The med is not working out for me. I did seek counseling in 2014. All in the same year, a brother, my mom and my dad passed. Also in 2014, after surgery for BPH, my husband was diagnosed with PCa per post-surgical pathology after 11 years of negative biopsies. The counseling did help, but it was quite a while after I left the therapist that I began to heal.

Cleodwoman profile image
CleodwomanModerator in reply to Bethpage

Wow. I admire your strength. What meds are you taking to aid with sleep?

I used to be a good sleeper. Cleodman used to laugh at me because the second my head would touch the pillow, I was out. Not anymore. I take over the counter pills but I feel like the bring my mood down and make me so tired. Melatonin doesn’t help anymore.

Bethpage profile image
Bethpage in reply to Cleodwoman

I was prescribed Ambien/zolpidem ER 6.25 mg for sleep in September of last year. I haven't slept since menopause at age 40, 28 years ago. My husband's PCa, CLL, and skin cancer have made that situation worse. The zolpidem ER was working, but only for 2-3 hours. I have a boatload of autoimmune, including advanced Sjogren's. Dryness (eyes and mouth) is not listed as a SE, but apparently it is for me. I could not swallow past the dryness and could no longer blink. The psychiatric NP took me off the zolpidem ER today and prescribed 30 days of temazepam, 15 mg. She said it will not cause dryness. We'll see. I wish it hadn't taken so long for me to realize the issue with the zolpidem ER. Dummy me. I'll let you know if the temazepam works. It's specifically for insomnia. As you already know, lack of sleep worsens any tendency for depression.

Cleodwoman profile image
CleodwomanModerator in reply to Bethpage

Thank you for sharing this. Yes, please let me know how its working for you. You’re right, my mood is lower when I don’t sleep well. I guess I hadn’t thought about it. Sometimes we just assumed that’s just the way it is and deal with it. Keep me posted please.

Bethpage profile image
Bethpage in reply to Cleodwoman

I am back so quickly because I already know about the temazepam. It's specifically for insomnia. In folks with autoimmunes, meds often do the opposite of what they're intended and tested for. That's the case for me with temazepam. I took one Friday night and never sat down the entire night. It was supposed to provide 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep. My heart beat out of my chest for most of the 8 hours, so I know it did something. I won't be taking it again, but if you don't have autoimmunes, it might be worth a try. My psychiatric NP told me it's the sleeping aid with which she has the most success.

longleaf profile image

I have used therapy more to help deal with other stressors while dealing with grief and fear. Other stressors being things at work or interactions with family which would maybe not been hard to deal with if I hadn’t already been dealing with grief. It can be easy to take the pain and over- react to something smaller.

I pray for comfort for all who grieve.

Cleodwoman profile image
CleodwomanModerator in reply to longleaf

Oh that’s a good point. I didn’t think about therapy in that way. So true…maybe to help me with other things so I can grief in peace…if that even makes any sense.

Yadifan profile image

I am not seeking counseling. Yet. But not afraid to try it at some point. There are times I wish I could lay it all out to someone but don't want to worry or burden my family or friends. Right now it feels so overwhelming with doctors & treatments & work but maybe the busyness of it all keeps me from having meltdowns - or frequent ones. I won't lie...I do have them.

I'm so sorry you're hurting but glad you're posting here. I hope you find something that can provide comfort and strength. I do know that the loss of our partner, love, best friend will leave us with a hole that nothing can fill. I hope we can all find comfort in knowing that we were blessed to have a love that strong.

Sending you big hugs Cleodwoman. I'm glad you're here and so sorry you ever had to be here.

Cleodwoman profile image
CleodwomanModerator in reply to Yadifan

Thank you. I appreciate your support. You’re stronger than you know.

Kiag profile image

Cleodwomen I am keeping you in my thoughts and prayers as you approach the one year anniversary of your beloved husbands passing. Your gift of words on this care loving blog surpasses any thing I could do in the depths of my grief. Thank you and Blessings to you.

When my husband of 40 years, was first diagnosed with very aggressive , fast doubling time PCa six years ago ,I spent many a couples therapy session blowing my nose, wiping away tears, and the only words that came out of my mouth was " No , Non't Cancer, Non't You'.

It wasn't until I entered a co-ed care lovers support group ( pre Covid) could I feel safe to share ALL of my feelings: grief, fear, anxiety and Anger, did my healing journey begin.

Yes, all my triggers still get set off around scan times, psa draws, MO virtual visits, seeking second and third opinions ,and new med combinations, but in therapy I learned the skills to Gently let go, Trust I will get through whatever we are facing, and dig deep to look for what I can be grateful for.

Just a thought, that I offer to you ,is that you might want to dabble with a new last breath image. In all that I read from your husband on this blog, something that I am 100 % sure of is that he LOVED you Dearly. A possible new image that you might want to embrace is that in your Husband's last breath he was wispering I Love You . Hugs to you Cleodwomen

Cleodwoman profile image
CleodwomanModerator in reply to Kiag

Thank you so very much for your kind words and remembering that his anniversary is coming up. It all still feels so surreal. Your kind words brought me comfort. I will try to have a new image.

MSPCF2021 profile image

I am the patient here. My wife and I started couples counseling after my surgery. It is private pay. There is a dearth of mental health professionals trained in treating prostate cancer situations. Our therapist has commented on this and has mentioned that she is learning more and more about the disease all the time in the hopes of better helping us and others. We told her she could probably limit her patients to prostate cancer couples and be busy full time - there is a great unmet need out there. Our major research-medical center docs had no idea where to send us for this help and told us they didn’t think we need it, as we are already a support system for each other. We didn’t agree, especially my wife, who understandably feels that she is carrying a caregiver burden in addition to dealing with fears of my death and all the changes to our marriage and sex life. We both feel the extreme and sometimes destructive anxiety about test time and medical appointments that others have mentioned here, and we need help managing that. It’s hard on us individually and as a couple. We feel the therapist is helping. We found our therapist by our own research and calling around. It was a big investment of time to find the right person and it is still a time and money commitment for us. We did not feel well served by “one size fits all” social workers at cancer center nonprofit organization. This is a cancer that affects a couple in very particular ways that last forever. I hope that people will share resources here.

Wishing the men and their caregivers well.

Izzygirl1 profile image

I want my husband to talk with someone. He is depressed (could be from the Firmagon shots and the diagnose, of course) and cries a lot which breaks my heart. I could use to talk to someone also. Right now I think the two of us just want to put our heads under the pillow together and pretend this is all a horrible dream.

I admire your strength, even if you don't always feel strong, and the help you keep giving after losing the love of your life. I'm sending you love and ((HUGS)) and thank you for sharing so much.


MSPCF2021 profile image
MSPCF2021 in reply to Izzygirl1

My wife and I hear all that you are saying, Izzygirl1. I hope we can enliven this post thread and get input from others.

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