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Ncd

Anyone else feeling worse about feeling selfish and needing help because of this MBC? I think needing so much help this time around is more devastating than the disease itself! Feeling bad that I have to rely on very willing family and friends and realize how blessed I am, but feeling so weak. Thanks for letting me vent.

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I’m lucky so far that I can work full time. Before my husband lost his job, I had someone clean my house. Even before breast cancer. My husband would just not pitch in in a meaningful way, and I was very resentful. He suggested several times we pay someone. We’re not rich, but with his salary it was doable. Then he lost his job, and we had to clean the house and do laundry. Now that he is out of work, he has stepped it up, even vacuums. The last few months I’ve gotten physically tired and maybe a bit depressed. Winter has been cold, wet and dark. My job has gotten on my nerves. I don’t even want to stop off on the way home to grocery shop. I’d rather eat cereal. I stopped making dinner. I just stopped almost everything but going to work. I do feel guilty. I also don’t want to socialize. I like my alone time anyway, and my husband is the opposite. But I’ve almost stopped trying. It isn’t fair to him. I feel very guilty that he is in this predicament. As much as I am sad for myself, I feel like I’m putting him thru this messed up and depressing journey. I understand my feelings are not rational, but they’re there, in the back of my mind. Right now I am working on turning this around and getting back on track. My advice to you, and to myself, is to let go of the guilt and do whatever you can to keep your immune system optimal. Same for your emotional well-being. With whatever energy you do have, invest in eating well, reading motivating and uplifting books, spending time on whatever brings you joy. I just downloaded an audible book by Pema Chodron, my favorite Buddhist teacher, and I listened while I straightened up the kitchen. Listen to music. Buy yourself flowers Force yourself to get out, even if only for coffee or a movie with your loved ones. Today I felt pretty lethargic, but my husband and I took a drive in the mountains and had a bite to eat. I’m on an extended break from Ibrance cause I feel so low. Discussed it with my doctor who actually Suggested it Our treatments can cause a lot of adverse effects. Find a pace that works for you. Don’t feel guilty about napping. You can find small ways to show your friends and family how grateful you are to have their love and support. When you are more at peace and happier, you’ll make the people around you feel better. I totally get the guilt. But guilt is so toxic. Let’s let it go. Don’t we have enough to deal with? 💕🙏

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♥️♥️♥️

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Love Pema!! :-) Take good care.

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Just listening to her helps calm and center me🙏

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I'm much the same. I had to quit my job during my first bout with breast cancer in 2015. I supposedly "beat" the cancer, but never got my sea legs back. I was exhausted all the time. My FMLA ran out. My sick days ran out. I had to quit. We were lucky because my wife worked but I felt guilty all the time for wanting to constantly stay home. Now, I'm in my third and final bout with cancer and I am lucky. My wife works and I am on her insurance, plus it is excellent insurance. But, I have no energy to keep up with anything more than simple house cleaning. She does a lot of it on the weekends with not word of complaint. I can still drive and take myself to appointments, as long as they are short. I can't grocery shop alone. I can't get the bags out of the cart and into the car and then unload them at home! I feel as if I've given up so much with this cancer. It is nice to know that there are others who aren't like the women in the Ibrance commercials....SO perky and full of energy!

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Thank you. I think that Ibrance commercial is deceiving too!!!?

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Yep, those perky actors get to leave the set!!! Glad you have the insurance you need.

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OMG, thank you for mentioning those offing perky actors! I was just complaining to a friend today about this! I think it sets expectations that we're going to be, like, teaching college classes! Organizing family reunions! Feel great now and forever! Ugh! Effing marketers! (this, from an old marketer!)... Lynn

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Guess they did their best to ignore the elephant in the room. Not to mention side effects. But hey, I am alive, just not ready to skip thru a field of flowers 🌸

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Wow those commercials had me fooled as well...I feel awful taking Ibrance/Letrozole esp the first 2 weeks. I pray that things get better for us. I've been in so much pain lately, its depressing...😢😢😢

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You are so beautifully articulate with your thoughts and feelings. Thank you for making me feel normal.

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Oh, Timtam. I've never been accused of being normal, but glad I can make you feel that way!

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I also feel terrible about being more dependent on people. Especially my daughter!

My boyfriend is also ill, we don't have a car and there are no stores within walking distance to even get necessities!

My daughter picks me up one day on the weekend when she isn't traveling and she brings me on all my errands! God bless her! I feel so badly. It is a mother's job to take care of her daughter not the other way around. I know this is really stressful for her but she never complains.

My neighbor next door goes grocery shopping on Friday so when I feel up to it I go with her. She is 82 and I should be helping her! She will only drive up the street about 2 miles to a supermarket. But I am so grateful!

I always took care of everything. I always worked and was so independent. Now I feel like a schlub!

So I understand how you feel. But all we can do is what we can do and try to let go of the guilt somehow because there is nothing else we can do! Ugh

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Mariootsi, sounds like your daughter is a lot like you. Wouldn’t you do the same for your daughter and your neighbor if the roles were reversed? Not to proselytize, but I will 🙄, I listened to Pema Chodrons audiobook “Getting Unstuck.” Firstly, just listening to her calm, soothing voice is therapeutic for me. But the first chapter talks about letting go. That’s huge for me, as I tend to cling to all sorts of emotions and personal history that do not serve me now. I am not preCancer Nancy, and in many ways, that is a good thing. I have issues and needs I didn’t anticipate. It does get overwhelming at times, and cancer becomes another job. I need to be reminded to inhale and let that go. Been down that road and it’s a dead end. The path ahead is my life. I can best help and best show gratitude for the people who care about me by being as whole as possible. As unencumbered by grief, fear, anxiety and guilt as possible. It will make my time with my peeps richer and more meaningful. Boy, do I have to keep listening to that book. Everyday for the rest of my life! Well, enough about me.

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You are my hero! I'm going to have to give a listen to that book.

I am not the Marianne I was pre mbc either.

Just when I think I have a handle on this thing I lose my hold again.

And yes, my daughter is alot like me. She has always been the greatest gift of my life!

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There is a free excerpt online if you google it. Or google Sounds True, which is a company that sells this kind of thing and I think they have a free excerpt. A lot of her other books are on audio, but this is one of the few she narrates. Makes a big difference for me.

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I will definitely google it! Thank you.

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Listened to the excerpt. Sounds like it is worth the buy!

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I have had this CD ' getting unstuck' on my desk for several weeks now and today since the weather was less than ideal I decided to listen to it. Wow what a fabulous program. Pema Chodron is so funny and I really appreciated her honesty about the difficulties she had with the wandering mind during meditation. Thank you so much for recommending. I got it from the library but enjoyed it so much I will purchase. Truly enlightening.

Sandra

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It really sounds like you have made a terrible situation work for you for now mariootsi. My partner has just been place in a hospice. I have been looking after him for all his needs. And I am totally bushed! (Is that an Australian term? I hope you understand! Ha ha)

Now I don’t have to look after him and lift him onto the toilet. (You can all imagine how that has felt for me with the Mets in my thoracic spine and multiple ribs and also hips.).... but now I have to drive half an hours either way to see him. But it

Even the aloneness at home now is better than looking at his blank face that is not recognising much anymore.

You are all amazing.

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Omg! I'm so sorry you have gone through such a horribly sad situation. My heart goes out to you. And I pray for your husband in hospiceYou must be so exhausted.

Take care of yourself.

Love,

Marianne

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So much appreciation for what you are feeling and the thoughts of all who replied. I was the rock of my family and now I have no choice but to rely on them in many areas. There is no reason to feel guilty. It’s not your fault. My partner says caring for me has been a gift to him—an experience he never would have had. Some days I still feel weird about it but I have to let it go.

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He sounds like your Popeye!💕

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I try to Realize that others get joy out of helping me, the same joythat I always got by being strong and helping others. I tried to rationalize my need for help as a way to help someone else feel good about helping me. I do know those who care about me and love me do you want to help and get frustrated when I don’t let them. It’s just all so hard to digest. Thank you for your thoughts. Prayers.

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Keep remembering that mariootsi. My friends al say, you are getting the love and the help because you have always given it, and they love doing it. We have to try to

.....believe.

......acccept.

.....and as nstonerocks says, let go.

Why are these the hardest things?

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I don't know.

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Vent away. THat's what this forum is good for! No judging. We're on a challenging path. I need to remind myself of that frequently. It's okay for all of us to take time and rest or do whatever our bodies are requesting of us. Listening is the key. I'm always in practice with that one! :-)

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Most of us were raised to do it all, bear it all, push through...it's true, we cannot hold ourselves to our old standard, which is crazy in itself. We have to shift into a protection mode so we don't crash.

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I had someone in to do some housework while my ankle was healing. Now that I can walk I am afraid to let her go in case I get bad days from the chemo. She was so nice, she said let's play it this way. When you get a day or week that you are not great just text me and I will

Come that week. We do not need a steady appointment. I was so happy, now I know if I get sick again she will help me out.

I do not want to lose her😉

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It's easy to say don't feel guilty because i do the same. I think it's hard for me to accept the fact that I need help and that there's no shame in accepting help. Easy to say...hard to do. You're not alone. Hugs ❤️

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Hugs and prayers

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My situation is my Oncologist can barely promise me another 18 months, and my heart valve (mitral) is

so severely compromised that I could develop congestive heart failure, if I dont get it operated on. Problem is

most doctors think the heart surgeon will refuse to operate---as I would be either too high risk or my cancer

too advanced to try and save me. I see the surgeon on 29th of May to hope he will operate. I am resigned I

may die during surgery but I don;t care. So have this sad "possibly my last days atttjde and my poor

daughter and son are catering to take me on a long drive to visit a nephew I have never visited, as if it were

honoring a bucket list......At some point it will be embarrassing to survive, lol.

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Tick off those bucket lists arkait. And I’m sending you love and hugs from down under.

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Praying that he will operate

If not try to find another doctor. I wish you luck and many more years in which to complete your bucket list.

Love,

Marianne

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Morning Mary,

Can you try to find another doctor who will operate if this one won't? You deserve to be given a chance. I wish you all the best when you see the surgeon in May.

Sophie ❤

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Hugs and prayers!

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Prayers

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I know exactly what you are feeling. I feel the same. I've been on Ibrance and Letrizole since July. I get so weak and dizzy that I cant do much of anything except sit in the chair and watch my husband take over the cooking, shopping, errands and even feeding the dogs. I used to breed German Shepherd show dogs for 30 years. Brushed their teeth and groomed them every day plus long walks with everyone of them. At one time I had 7 German Shepherds. I competed in the dog shows all over Illinois, Wisconsin, ohio, Indiana, and Michigan. It was my passion. Now MBC has taken it all away. I'm down to one German Shepherd,a new CHAMPION awarded the AKC title last July right before I got the diagnoses. . And I havea Soft Coated Wheaton Terrier that my son could no longer keep. Now I don't have the strength to even pick up their brush or to throw them a ball. I feel guilty for not only my husband who has taken over but my dogs. They are missing out as much as I am. I

I try to stay positive and trust in God's will for the remaining years of my life.

So you see, guilt sprouts up repeatedly. You are far from being alone. We all are sharing with you.

Hugs, Patricia

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Nice to know I am not alone. Prayers.

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Gosh, NCDS and others...selfish? No way. Not even a little bit. You have relationships with people which means give and take. In this lifetime or the next (!). When someone needed you at some point, did you question it or keep score? I doubt it. One silver lining of our situation is that we give...GIVE...other people the opportunity to show compassion and caring. We're doing THEM a favor (!)...I'm exaggerating, just a bit, but there is a lot of truth in that. There is no selfish in this...it's like the Lion King (!), the circle of life, accept the help, and realize that the givers benefit more than the takers... :) Please be well, and happy...people love you...Best, Lynn

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Thanks 🙏

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Hi,

You are not being selfish at all! Accepting help shows that you are aware of your health limitations. If you push yourself too hard, then you may crash. Even though I feel fine a lot of the time, I still have to take it easy because when I don't I end up suffering for it later on. Accepting help is also a way to allow loved ones to take care of us when we need them the most. If the situation was reversed, we would do the same.

Sophie ❤

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Thanks and prayers!

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Hi

Don’t feel guilty asking or expecting for help...it’s not your fault you feel weak and helpless or that you have mbc

If it was the other way round you would do the same for them...they love you and want to do it...it’s a woman thing..we are so used to caring for others that it goes against the grain to ask for assistance when we need it

I was so weak six months ago..I couldn’t tack up my horse or swap his rugs etc and had to ask people to do it for me..they were pleased to be of help..that way I could go for a ride

All the best

Barb xx

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I just want to thank all of you who have been vulnerable and honest with your feelings and sharing on this site. I am always wondering what's next so I can better prepare myself. Nowhere do I get such honesty except from this site. You sometimes make me cry, but please don't stop posting even during the bad times. We are here on this earth to serve others and to give others the gift and opportunity to help and serve us. Yes, I said we are giving others a gift when we allow them to help us and we are gracious (not guilty) for their help.

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Prayers!

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I feel useless like you. I had severe hip damage due to my cancer (actually that was how it was diagnosed) so I was using a walker and in so much pain before I even knew it was cancer. I had hip replacement surgery in October and it wiped me out. It seems like my husband has been doing it all for a couple of years. I don’t know how others work and stay active and that makes me feel even worse mentally.

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Hi Sarcie,

You are not useless. Hip replacement surgery is major surgery, so you should not feel guilty for leaning on your husband for support. You must have been in so much pain when you were diagnosed. I continue to work, but that does not mean you are useless because you are not able to work. We are all different. I still get tired and need to slow down and make time to rest from time to time when I push myself too hard trying to be superwoman. This has been one of those weeks.

Take care,

Sophie

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Thank you for your kind words Sophie. I was in excruciating pain for over a year and they told me it was torn cartilage in my hip until the MRI showed cancer. Then suddenly they were throwing pain meds at me.

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You're welcome. I don't find it easy to ask for help, but I am doing so more since my diagnosis. Sometimes it's just the emotional aspect that can take a toll and having someone to provide support means a lot. I always felt like I was carrying the world on my shoulders, as my family replies on me so much (my dad is widowed and both my brothers have learning disabilities and autism). My husband is a great support.

I'm the first one staff calls if there is an issue about my brothers and it can be draining. A carer called me the other day and asked me to stop by to dress my brother's finger! When I got there I asked if they have a first aid box in the building (they do) but they still call me about the most mundane issues that they could sort out themselves. Sorry for the rant!

Sophie ❤

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I call that “venting “. It releases your feelings so you don’t explode. I have a friend that is great at letting me vent via text message. I’m always here anytime you need to vent ❤️

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Thank you! I appreciate it! I just got home from the hospital following my CT scan. I got there early so I could drink my final pint of water, but they called me in 45 minutes early. That was a bonus.

Sophie ❤

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That’s always a bonus. Nothing worse than needing to pee 😉

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Oh, I know! When I mentioned that I came in early so I could drink that final pint they said not to worry about it, as they were not concerned about my bladder (Mmm.. OK!)

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Good luck with your scan results Sophie. When do you get them?

Sandra

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Thanks, Sandra. I get the results on the 20th. My CT scan wasn't due until next week, but I managed to get an appointment for today.

Sophie ❤

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I don’t have to drink water for my ct scans. Just the yucky stuff I have to mix into water. That may be what you mean.

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I had to do that for a PET CT scan, but I don't have to for the regular CT scans.

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The contrast I get is injected into my cannula as I am getting ready to have my scan. It feels like I have wet myself and I get a flushing sensation in my hands and face.

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I know. It’s such a weird feeling. I have to drink stuff the night before and the morning of the scan and then immediately before the scan. Then they also inject contrast.

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You sound like you have a lot of your plate even before adding cancer to the pile. I hope that others will help take up some of the load for you.

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Yes, since early childhood. There is no one else to help take the pressure off other than my husband.

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You are a strong woman to tend to others when you yourself need to be tended to.

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Thank you. Our relatives live far away and are not involved.

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