Rant – Parents!

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smudgesicle
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Facebook Username: prue.robson
Location: Australia

Rant – Parents!

Postby smudgesicle » Wed Jul 16, 2014 5:41 am

I wasn't going to post this, but I need to get it out somewhere.

Background: I've been living with my parents since before dx, but cancer definitely extended my stay. My partner lives and works 5.5 hours away and it didn't seem a good idea to uproot him or me during tx and recovery. I do love my parents and they've been really helpful with some things, but one of the things I've learnt is that people don't really change.

My continuing problem is that my mum likes to talk, gossip even. Always has. I didn't even make it home from my diagnosing appointment before half my town knew. Now I don't have a problem with people knowing but 1) I'd prefer to tell people and 2) they don't need to know every detail. I get that people care, but some things I would have preferred to keep private (doing IVF and the ostomy come to mind specifically). I have brought this up with her over and over again but she just keeps doing it. I can literally overhear her whispering on the phone about me. She knows I don't like it, so she whispers! I've started to withhold from her but it's hard because it feels like I've got no one in my corner. Plus, she get angry and makes a big deal about it saying she'll just tell people to stop calling. She does not respond well to criticism! The problem is I don't really know how to stop it because she's been feeding people information for over a year now, so how do you just stop?

In making the decision to go to a permanent ostomy, I'd really rather everyone I've ever met didn't know I was walking around with a bag of poop on my abdomen. But she just doesn't get it. I'm pretty open about poop after all this, and at the end of the day, I don't really mind some people knowing it's more the principle of the matter. It's my privacy at stake, not hers. Am I overreacting? Should I just give up and let her do whatever she wants with the information? Any suggestions?
dx May '13 @ 29
RC T2N1bM0, Stage IIIA
7/13 chemoradiation
9/13 ULAR (pCR) & right hemi due to large "precancerous" appendiceal tumour, temp. ileo
11/13-5/14 5FU, 24 rounds
1/14 SBO & takedown
8/14 NED
9/14 perm. colostomy

NWgirl
Posts: 6659
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2008 3:24 am
Facebook Username: Belle Piazza
Location: Battle Ground, Washington

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby NWgirl » Wed Jul 16, 2014 8:24 am

Aaaahhhhhhhh.....parents. It's not that you're "letting her" - it's more like what you already said - you can't change people. You can, and should, express to her that you would prefer to keep parts of your life private. What she does with your request is in her court.

I have a challenging relationship with my mother as well - totally different reasons. I don't like that we aren't as close as I'd like, but have had to accept the fact that she is who she is and she's not going to change at this point.

Living with your mother makes it even more difficult because #1 - you really can't hide much from a person when you live with them - especially an ostomy! And #2 - because you're likely to over hear many if not most of her conversations with others about your situation.

I sympathize completely. Just try to stay strong and be as patient as you can. Much easier said than done, I know.
Belle - "Don't Retreat - Reload"DX 10/07 Stage III Rectal
Surgery 11/07; 27 of 38 nodes
Perm Colostomy 8/11
12/10 recurrence lungs & LN's
VATS Jan 2011
Radiation Oct 2013
Chemo for Life
2012 Colondar Model

suemarie
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Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby suemarie » Wed Jul 16, 2014 9:05 am

Hi smudgesicle,

I found your rant interesting and of course you know your mom better than us so I totally understand that if you say she's gossiping, she is, but I wonder if she would ever consider finding a good counselor and/or support group where she could talk all she wants in a more constructive manner - to help her sort out her own feelings. My husband has had severe health issues for over 10 years and I found a fantastic counselor to talk over all my emotions, stress and feelings about his problems and my role as a caregiver. This helped me enormously because I felt such a need to talk about the effects on me and how to cope so I could help my husband. It also eliminated the need to talk about it with just anyone.

I wonder if there are deeper reasons beneath her gossiping - which of course is wrong and totally disrespectful to you. Too bad she can't respect your wishes - I mean who wants their business talked about all over town - but I was just wondering if her need to talk is her fear for you and her helplessness at watching you go through this. Is she seeking others input? Their compassion? If so, counseling or a support group might serve that need and leave you in peace.

The last thing you need is stress and it'd be great if you could move around your town without everyone knowing and asking questions.

This was just a thought because I felt a strong need to talk about my husband's ongoing issues and my fear etc but I chose a counselor to do this with - which helped so much. Hope you're okay and it's great for you to rant- you need to. :)

smudgesicle
Posts: 124
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2014 3:23 am
Facebook Username: prue.robson
Location: Australia

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby smudgesicle » Wed Jul 16, 2014 9:29 pm

Thanks guys I really just needed to vent. I think I'm just gonna live and let live. There's not much I can do without creating extra tension in the relationship, which just makes me more stressed out.

Thanks for your input suemarie. I think she has spoken to a professional, but again not something we really talk about in my family. I would definitely say she does talk in order to gain support, I just wish she talked more about her than me! It's not that hard to say "Things aren't great right now, but we're working on some solutions" in my opinion, but she likes to go into all the details. In some ways, I appreciate the extra support she drums up by talking to people because I'll often get texts wishing me luck with appointments etc but I just feel a bit uncomfortable with everyone knowing my business. Guess I'll just have to focus on the good parts :)
dx May '13 @ 29
RC T2N1bM0, Stage IIIA
7/13 chemoradiation
9/13 ULAR (pCR) & right hemi due to large "precancerous" appendiceal tumour, temp. ileo
11/13-5/14 5FU, 24 rounds
1/14 SBO & takedown
8/14 NED
9/14 perm. colostomy

Cj51
Posts: 892
Joined: Thu May 13, 2010 5:58 pm
Location: Midwest

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby Cj51 » Thu Jul 17, 2014 1:49 am

OMG, you could be me writing this, except that I don't live with my mom. (I don't think I could have handled it, frankly) It drove me bonkers that my mom seemed to need to broadcast the news of my illness and all the associated details far and wide. When I asked her to tone it down, she said she needed to talk to people, it helped her deal with it, and then tried to make me feel guilty about not wanting the world to know my private information so that they could pray for me and give me sympathy. My full name was published in church bulletins in my old hometown and all over the area, by people I didn't even know. Maybe I should have felt loved and cared for, but honestly, I felt like my privacy had been violated, and like the information that was being passed around was totally out of my control, and it was a feeling that made me really uncomfortable. I wish I had thought to encourage her to see a counselor, but honestly, I don't think it would have helped. Even now, she'll say, dramatically, "we almost lost you!" when people are around, just to get a reaction. It makes me cringe, and it makes me furious. She knows this, and still it goes on. She's in her 80s, what can I say? She's never going to change.

This is hard enough to go through without the details of your illness and treatment being fodder for gossip. I'm sorry I don't have a solution, only sympathy, and plenty of that. Stay strong, you'll get through this. Best wishes for successful treatment, a full recovery, and plenty more years of being annoyed with your mother. :-)

Take care,
Cj
DX Stage IIIb RC, T3N1M0, April 2010, 51
6 wks Xelox/rad 6/10
resection, temp illeostomy 8/10 Complete response!
12 rounds FOLFOX for clean up 9/10, Allergic to Oxi, started Xeloda only 12/10
Ileo takedown 9/28/11
10/15 NED

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Cherie
Posts: 590
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Facebook Username: cherie
Location: New Zealand

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby Cherie » Thu Jul 17, 2014 1:57 am

I think we have the same mother :wink:

I hate my mothers gossip but is some weird way it is her way of dealing with her daughter having cancer. She needs to talk about it and if I don't want the town to know something I don't let her know. (hard when you are living with her.) Better to have someone there helping as there are many here with none.
36Yo F
2000 UC
2013 Stage 4 CC 15/126 LN spread to the omentum
June Collectomy all visible cancer removed
July Folfox + Avastin
2/14 clean scan
8/14 Ileo-anal pouch surgery still NED
1/15 Emergency illeostomy spread to peritoneum and small bowel

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Patience
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Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2011 10:26 am

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby Patience » Thu Jul 17, 2014 5:01 am

You cannot change what others (including your Mother) say or talk about, but you can change the direction of a conversation that you are having with someone. If an outsider mentions your illness or treatment, simply say, "Thanks for your concern, I appreciate your well wishes, but I don't like to talk about private issues such as my health". Then change the subject. Good luck.
"Sweet dreams till sunbeams find you.
Sweet dreams that leave all worries behind you."

orcasres
Posts: 836
Joined: Mon Jul 01, 2013 10:23 pm
Location: Orcas Island, WA

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby orcasres » Thu Jul 17, 2014 3:15 pm

How can so many of us have the same mother?

My younger brother died suddenly at 47 (he was the Lutheran bishop for Detroit and all of SE Michigan) and his wife is a minister, so when I was diagnosed with CRC three years later, probably half the Lutheran churches in Detroit had my name on a prayer list. My sister-in-law's mother let it slip when I was visiting Detroit after I was finished with chemo that my mother was annoyed that I did not provide her with all of the details of my illness and infusions, etc. Since she was 2000 miles away it was relatively easy to edit the story, but I know that anything I told her was immediately broadcast to a large audience that I did not nor never would know and she still likes to tell everyone about it (she is 85) and now lives on the same island. She will never change but I still keep the health information she gets about me and my husband to the barest minimum since I know she will tell everyone on the island that she now knows.



Lois
63 yo F
Colon resection Sept. 2010
pT3N0M0 Stage 2A
Medullary Tumor 6.5cm long
Lymphovascular invasion
Lynch negative
12 FOLFOX 11/2010 to 5/2011 8 w/Oxi
NED so far

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ktwmn
Posts: 349
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:41 am

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby ktwmn » Thu Jul 17, 2014 4:03 pm

Add another to the list of people with the same mother!! :roll: Mine is the same generation (in her mid-80s) and does not "believe in" counseling, so telling half the world about something that is for me a private matter helps relieve her anxiety and stress. There is nothing I can do to change this so like many of you I have to regulate what information is shared.
Dx 7/11, Stage IIIc CC
12 txs Folfox 8/2011-2/2012
MSS, KRAS-mut G12D
NED until 3/2015, mets to liver and peritoneum
April-December 2015: 15 txs folfiri+avastin
Liver mets resolved; pelvic met remains
January-May 2016: folfox+avastin; allergic rxn to oxi
June-August 2016: 5FU+avastin
October 2016: looking into immuno trial
January 2017: maintenance chemo xeloda + avastin

Cj51
Posts: 892
Joined: Thu May 13, 2010 5:58 pm
Location: Midwest

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby Cj51 » Thu Jul 17, 2014 11:09 pm

Holy smokes, I had no idea that this was such a common problem. I find this really interesting---all of us with mothers in their 80s that deal with this information by telling all and sundry personal details about our health.

I don't think there's any way to stop it, but I have to say, I'm sort of amused that there are so many of us out there. :-)

Cj
DX Stage IIIb RC, T3N1M0, April 2010, 51
6 wks Xelox/rad 6/10
resection, temp illeostomy 8/10 Complete response!
12 rounds FOLFOX for clean up 9/10, Allergic to Oxi, started Xeloda only 12/10
Ileo takedown 9/28/11
10/15 NED

smudgesicle
Posts: 124
Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2014 3:23 am
Facebook Username: prue.robson
Location: Australia

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby smudgesicle » Fri Jul 18, 2014 12:00 am

Well at least I don't feel lonely now! Although my mum is only in her 50s. Don't tell me it's gonna get worse! :lol:

Like most of you, I just try to regulate the information that I give her but it's hard when I'm living with her. At least I've managed to keep some things under wraps by just not talking about them (hello, I don't think the whole town would be interested in my vaginal stenosis :oops: )
dx May '13 @ 29
RC T2N1bM0, Stage IIIA
7/13 chemoradiation
9/13 ULAR (pCR) & right hemi due to large "precancerous" appendiceal tumour, temp. ileo
11/13-5/14 5FU, 24 rounds
1/14 SBO & takedown
8/14 NED
9/14 perm. colostomy

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Maggie Nell
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Joined: Wed May 27, 2015 1:57 am
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby Maggie Nell » Sat Oct 08, 2016 12:55 pm

For all you peeps who thought regulating your bowel movements was the only issue.....
DX April 2015, @ 54
35mm poorly diff. tumour found upon emergency r. hemicolectomy
for ileo-colic intussusception.
Lymph nodes: 0/22
T3 N0 MX

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ABMom
Posts: 54
Joined: Sat Sep 10, 2016 6:04 pm
Location: Calgaryish

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby ABMom » Sat Oct 08, 2016 2:46 pm

Add me to the list of people with your mother - she's been telling people I had cancer for weeks even though I was just officially diagnosed this week. She not only tells EVERYONE my business but she isn't even accurate most of the time. I have been telling myself that this is something she needs in order to deal with it. It doesn't make it okay, but it calms me down when I think I'm going to lose it.
39 Stage 1 RC
T2N0Mx - 2016-10-07
LAR - 2016-11-01
Illeo-reversal - 2017-01-27

AngelaN
Posts: 206
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:00 pm
Facebook Username: angelamnicholas

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby AngelaN » Sun Oct 09, 2016 8:27 am

We have learned that you only tell people what you want them to tell others. We communicate a lot but only what is okay to share. So after a doctors appt - we just post on Facebook. It takes the wind out of the gossiper's sails because everyone already knows what she knows. AND it may be a partial truth, but it's the same thing that everyone else heard. So for example....my husband was in a clinical trial, and he had growth on the trial. We were devastated. So we talked about options and how to go about finding Plan B w our oncologist. But then he posted something like "The trial did not go as we planned, but we have options and Angie already has a plan with our oncologist for our Plan B - feeling positive". That takes the drama out of it.
My mom I can trust with about anything but at this point we are estranged from my husband's parents for this reason and a long list of others culminating in a screaming match where she "disowned" my husband on Christmas Eve. But this was the tactic we decided to use with his mom to keep her drama to a minimum.
DH diagnosed with Stage 4 CRC Nov 2013
11 tx Folfox/Avastin; LAR/liver resection/introp RF of liver - May 2014
3 treatments FOLFIRI
Lung resection - Sept 2014
FOLFIRI + Avastin x 10 treatments
Avastin+5FU q3 weeks x 4
SBRT x 1 lung met
RFA for remaining 3 in Oct and Nov
SBRT for liver met Jan 16
lung mets growing
Enrolled in NIH TIL trial Oct 16
XRT for lung met 12/16
Cells didnt grow for TIL trial Feb 17
Waiting for NCT03085914 at Penn

zephyr
Posts: 108
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 7:31 am

Re: Rant – Parents!

Postby zephyr » Sun Oct 09, 2016 10:05 am

Maggie Nell wrote:For all you peeps who thought regulating your bowel movements was the only issue.....


Thanks, Maggie Nell, for the morning laugh!
Oct-2009 Stage I CC
Jun-2016 Stage 3 (T3 N1c)
Jun-2016 Surgery
Jul-2016 PET: Probable Stage 4 with inoperable lung mets
Aug-2016 Folfox
Jan-2017 Dropped oxaliplatin, continuing with 5FU, added Avastin
Aug-2017 Dropped Avastin, continuing with 5FU
Dec-2017 Chemo stopped working, lung mets growing but CEA stable, considering other treatment options
Jan-2018 Begin Folfiri & Cyramza (ramucirumab); also receiving Vitamin C & Quercetin by IV every week
Jun-2018 Taking a chemo break; preparing for surgery


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