Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you have any medical concerns do consult your GP.

DH is going to die

(79 Posts)

DH has cancer. We have been fighting it but today we decided: no more pain, the doctors have been telling us that there's no real hope, but we've tried to ignore it for so long. He will continue taking the drugs which will prolong his life, but chances are he'll have about five months to live. We're lucky- some people die in that amount of time from the diagnosis, and five months is a long time. In about three months, he will probably need extra help, but his quality of life won't suffer into around five months, when he will die- thankfully he will deteriorate quickly instead of having a painful non-life.

We don't know what to tell anyone, especially our kids, and I just need someone to hold my hand.

TheOldestCat Wed 10-Oct-12 22:41:56

Very sorry to hear this.

Am holding your hand.

piratecat Wed 10-Oct-12 22:42:09

take my hand. i am so sorry daisymaisy xx

Hassled Wed 10-Oct-12 22:43:10

I'm so sorry - I can't begin to imagine what you're going through.

Winston's Wish are very good for helping children through bereavement, and I know some hospices offer counselling prior to the bereavement to help children understand what's going to happen - I'm sure your GP would know. You will be in my thoughts.

Caladria Wed 10-Oct-12 22:43:38

What TheOldestCat said. And that a good death is a rare and wonderful thing.

sad sorry daisymaisy I hope that you manage to have some lovely times together in the next few months and treasure the time that you have left.

Musomathsci Wed 10-Oct-12 22:44:04

So sorry, awful for you both. How old are your kids? Do you have other family around that you can confide in?

difficultpickle Wed 10-Oct-12 22:44:17

So so sorry. How old are your dcs?

VivaLeBeaver Wed 10-Oct-12 22:44:21

I'm so sorry.

How old are the kids? How much do they know already?

Asmywhimsytakesme Wed 10-Oct-12 22:44:22

I am so very sorry daisy.

It is so very unfair for your DH, children and you.


onedev Wed 10-Oct-12 22:44:30

I'm so sorry you're going through this. I have no advice but would say to be kind to yourself. How old are your children?

I really don't know what to say - I am so sorry.

magnolia74 Wed 10-Oct-12 22:45:29

Here's my hand xxxx

I am losing my dad to cancer and its unbelievably hard sad

Huge hugs to you and your family x

LST Wed 10-Oct-12 22:46:56

I'm so sorry op sad xxx

VBisme Wed 10-Oct-12 22:47:38

So sorry, you must be devastatted. I hope you can make wonderful memories in these last months.

IwishIwasmoreorganised Wed 10-Oct-12 22:48:41

Gosh, you both sound very brave.

I second the suggestion for Winstons Wish. A friends children have been supported very well by them. They will be able to offer you and your dc very good advice and support.

I'm very sorry to hear that you're going through this.


onedev they are 11 (twins), 7 and a 4yr old, who we only adopted eight months ago. This will be her first and last Christmas with DH and I wanted her to have so many happy memories of her new daddy. I just want to fill it with special things, and as it is happening, I'm just glad we can spend a Christmas and a proper celebration together- and our time together will include all the children's birthdays, so we have time for all the happiest memories ever. I want this to be the most special, wonderful time of my life, just us six, all together- even if it'll be the saddest.

Jacksmania Wed 10-Oct-12 22:53:34

Here's my hand too. I'm in a different time zone (GMT -8) so often post T odd hours if you ever need a middle-of-the-night hand to hold.

I am so, so sorry.

Haveaheart Wed 10-Oct-12 22:56:23

How awful for you and your children. My wonderful dad is terminally ill with cancer, it is unbearable. I am thinking of you.

I'm so sorry. I don't have the right words, so I'll just offer my hand too. I'll keep your family in my prayers x

bumpybecky Wed 10-Oct-12 22:59:00

I'm so sorry sad

PullyWoolOver Wed 10-Oct-12 23:00:51

So very sorry to hear this OP x

PiedWagtail Wed 10-Oct-12 23:01:45

Take my hand too daisymaisy. So so sorry.

TuftyFinch Wed 10-Oct-12 23:03:08

Oopsydaisymaisy, I'm really sorry xx

FarloWearsAGoldRibbon Wed 10-Oct-12 23:03:10

So, so sorry sad. Also want to recommend Winston's Wish. They do great books and memory boxes too that may help. If you have a Maggie's centre nearby they may also be able to provide counselling for you all. Thinking of you all.

scarlettsmummy2 Wed 10-Oct-12 23:05:09

So sorry x

I'm not good with words but couldn't not post sad

Wishing you and your family the best 5 months you can possibly have smile

I'm so sorry to hear this xx

keepmoving Wed 10-Oct-12 23:12:46

Holding your hand. My family spent my DSis's last few months together as a family before she died of cancer. We all went on holiday together, had (short) days out by the sea and filled our memories as best we could. She died more than 14 yrs ago and I still think of those precious times. Enjoy your time together.

whiteandyelloworchid Wed 10-Oct-12 23:14:27

i am so so very sorry to hear this.

my son died shortly after he was born so we didn't get to spend much time together

i really hope oyu get to spend these months with dh as pain free and comfortable as possible and fill the time with love and laughter if possible, take lot sand lots of photos, maybe you could all put your hand prints into clay together, so you have all your hand prints/imprints together, that would be somethign lovely to keep.

think about thigs you would love to keep, maybe start a box now, so if you go anyhwhere over the next months like days outs and holidays etc, keep everything possible, ticket stubs, leaflets for legoland or whatever it is you do

if your dh is in anyway artist perhaps he could paint you a picture or model somethign out of clay or fimo

really really hope your able to enjoy this time together, and i am so so sorry
its going to be a difficult road you sound strong but i send you love and strength

I'm sorry whiteandyelloworchid. I can't imagine losing a child, I've had miscarriages but that can't be even comparable. Great idea for the box. I was thinking about doing a keepsake thing, since we found out about the disease we've been doing that- even before we knew he would die, so thankfully we have photos, but we never thought about handprints or leflets or ticket stubs.

DH isn't much of an artist, and I think the artwork which would comfort me the most are my DCs drawings. DS1(the eldest twin) is great at art, so we'll use him, and then just seeing everyone else's drawings of us as a family would be great. Thanks for the imprint idea- there's a shop nearby which does imprints of hands, as well as being able to paint pots or plates. I'm thinking of doing a 'memory plate' where we paint our names and then they can paint pictures on it. It won't look good, but it's a memory. I was also thinking about renewing our marriage vows, even though marriage in itself isn't important, it would symbolise how much I love him.

And we've planned everything. Every weekend we've decided we'll do something. This weekend we're going to London Zoo on Saturday (a gift from a relative meant we all have passes) and on Sunday we're spending our day in the large park nearby, getting icecream, taking the bikes and the dogs etc; Next weekend is going to the South Bank and London Eye, and going to a local fundraising bikeathon where the DCs will be cycling for cancer. I want everything to be filled with memories.

I still haven't told the DCs and DH doesn't know how though.

Firstly, so sorry for you all. It is heartbreaking. sad
If your dh can face it, could he write each child a letter with things he wants for them and stories about himself. My dm did this for me. I was an adult but mum gave me tips for looking after my dd, like how to get stubborn stains out of her clothes, put gloves on a string so they don't get lost. The type of thing I would have phoned her and asked about.
I love that it is handwritten. When I open the envelope I feel closer to her. She finishes the letter by saying how much she loves me and how proud of me she is.
It is one of the first things I'd save if the house was burning down, after dd. obviously!
I will treasure it for ever.
I hope you manage to capture as many wonderful memories as possible. You are all so brave.

I am so sorry for you all. Heartbreaking for all of you and I am sure scary for your DH.

Some other ideas I have come across as well as letters are birthday cards for significant birthdays where your DH would write what he wishes for each child at that stage.

And video messages. Lots of video footage of you all as a family. And maybe a personal message for each child. I think people worry they will forget how their loved one looked and sounded so the video recordings are so special to keep.

Thank you. Video messages and recordings- videos of us all together, DH on speaking to DCs and me individually, DH talking to all of us. We were thinking that all of us should keep a diary- for DD and DS3, maybe a written one, but for us or the DCs, a video diary maybe, and then we can share all our moments and thoughts- and DH's special moments and thoughts. I know someone who did that, ages ago, and she said it gave her courage to see her father talk to her, and tell her about his day, years after his death even.

Birthday cards are a great idea. Thankfully he shall see everyones' birthday, including mine and his, even if he lives just 2mnths. I'm so grateful we have winter babies now, he can see them turning twelve, and eight and five. I'm also grateful that he saw the twins start secondary, all the kids start primary and see some of the most important memories of his life.

Thank you for that wonderful idea for the tips and life stories Drama. I was also considering doing one of those special memory things which people open at eighteen- memories, hopes, what he's proud of, his memories of their birth/adoption or them growing up. What do I put in those? Has anyone done them?

onedev Fri 12-Oct-12 13:34:26

Have fun at London Zoo - the ideas on here all sound great & your attitude is amazing.

I'm glad your DH got to experience all those firsts you listed & it'll be a real strength to your family how you can see the positives in all of that.

Stay strong.

MrsWolowitz Fri 12-Oct-12 13:37:15

I'm so sorry.

Your DH sounds like an amazing man and you sound like an amazing woman.

I'm just so sorry.

whiteandyelloworchid Fri 12-Oct-12 14:06:13

oposdaisy, how kind of you to offer your sympathies to me when you have so much to deal with.
the plans you have sound fab.
i agree some sort of letter from your dh to the dcs would be a wonderful thing for them to have to keep, as long as you get across the main points how much he loves them, and how proud he is off them
we need to hear that from time to time

when do you think you will tell the children?
must be a hard one to decide

Vickles Fri 12-Oct-12 14:08:55

Thinking of you and your family. Xxx

ThatVikRinA22 Fri 12-Oct-12 14:17:58

i am so, so sorry.

im not sure if this would give him and the children comfort or not, but ive always thought should i be diagnosed with anything, i would write some special letters to put away and be opened on special occasions like 18th, 21st birthdays, wedding days, etc....

im saying this but dont know if i could actually manage it.

i would also keep a video diary, and im so pleased you have lovely things planned out.

i would contact winstons wish aswell, they can help with all sorts of things, and will have people to talk to about how to break the news etc.

i am just so sorry you are in this position i truly am. ive struggled to read these 2 pages without getting emotional for you, am sure thats not what you need at all,

lastly, dont neglect your own needs, and feelings in this, i think its easy to become so focused on the family at a time like this that your own needs are easily forgotten.

i wish you much love and strength for these coming months and hope they are filled with wonderful times to make happy memories.

have a huge hug from me.


whiteandyelloworchid Fri 12-Oct-12 15:42:04

oh and how about a tree all of you could plant together?

expatinscotland Fri 12-Oct-12 15:47:22

Please cherish every day, even the bad ones.

Our 9-year-old daughter died just 7 months and 29 days after her diagnosis of acute myeloid leukaemia.

I wish we'd cherished it all more, we didn't expect her to die so quickly after she was diagnosed.

I'm sorry to read this, oops.

Thank you and sorry about your daughter expat. I can't believe I wasted the days we shared together before the diagnosis, and even a bit after, by shouting at him or being angry at him. I wish I'd known beforehand so every day would be special.

And thank you for the tree idea whiteandyelloworchid. I remember planting an apple tree when my sister died, we were both eight, and my favouite memories were when she was swinging and climbing on the trees in an orchard by our house. It was a perfect way to remember her, and because of DH's love for gardening and because his name is the name of a tree, it would be lovely. I've heard of buying bird boxes, or a patch of land where people plant trees, as gifts for birthdays. Maybe we could do that as a memory of him?

Thank you.

CountryBelle Mon 03-Dec-12 20:27:29

Holding your hand <hug> your family sounds beautiful xo

lisad123 Mon 03-Dec-12 21:06:04

Holding you hand and thinking of you xx
Have you thought about memory boxes for the children?
There are some lovely cards your dh can feel in for the children, will find link x

lisad123 Mon 03-Dec-12 21:08:32

There is loads of great stuff on their site and say it so much better than me x

lisad123 Mon 03-Dec-12 21:08:51
AnyFuckerForAMincePie Mon 03-Dec-12 21:12:09

I am so sorry x

pictish Mon 03-Dec-12 21:16:01

I am very sorry to read this. Much love to you all xxxxx

Greensleeves Mon 03-Dec-12 21:19:55

I am so sorry.

Am also holding your hand x

JingleBellaTheGymnast Mon 03-Dec-12 21:24:20

How absolutely awful. My dad left me a voicemail not long before he died and it got deleted, I've wished since I could hear it again so I'd second a recording of your DH.

All the very best to all of you.

MrsShrek3 Mon 03-Dec-12 21:56:23



we have walked so much of this path together, I'll still be here holding your hand.
Hugs. Sorry no clue what else to say but you know I feel for you

Imsosorryalan Mon 03-Dec-12 22:40:23

I'm lost for words. I'm so sorry you and your family are going through this. I will be thinking of you all this Christmas.

CatPussRoastingOnAnOpenFire Mon 03-Dec-12 22:48:06

I'm so sorry. sad Take care of yourselves and cherish every minute. xx

SquirtedFrankinScentsInStable Mon 03-Dec-12 22:50:32

I don't have much to add to those ^.
But I couldn't not post.
Thinking of you all, and I hope you all have a lovely Christmas brimming with memories. X

onemorehohoho Mon 03-Dec-12 22:51:09

Am holding your hand, oopsydaisy, and sending you hugs.

So sorry, you and your family will be in my thoughts often xx

FromEsme Mon 03-Dec-12 22:51:14

So sorry, daisymay x

changeforthebetterforObama Mon 03-Dec-12 22:54:01

No words of wisdom but I am extremely sorry. I wish you and your family joy for the time you have together and strength for the time beyond that.

That really, really sucks sad

Sharpkat Mon 03-Dec-12 23:00:35

Daisy may - am so sorry to hear this. My cousin lost her father (my uncle) to cancer last year and it was heart breaking. Don't know if you have been nominated for mumsnet secret Santa but I would happily send your family a gift if you would like. Anything just to make this last Christmas extra special xxxx

QODRestYeMerryGentlemen Mon 03-Dec-12 23:05:17

I'm sorry, how awful for you to have to bear it alone.

Love to you and yours

CheeryCherry Mon 03-Dec-12 23:06:26

So sorry. I repeat contacting Winstons wish. Also perhaps your DH writing each child a letter, to open when they are 18 or so. So glad you're planning lovely trips, every memory counts. Be brave.

Ilovemydogandmydoglovesme Mon 03-Dec-12 23:07:37

Am so, so sorry for you. I can't imagine what it must feel like.

Dh lost his lovely mum a few weeks ago. It's really shit. We had to tell the dc's and of course they were upset and I know that losing a grandparent isn't the same as a parent but I do sympathise a little bit. Holding your hand.

Don't know where you are but there's a fantastic charity in Norfolk called Nelson's Journey that was set up by a mum after her husband died to help bereaved children. It's done some really great things and might be able to tell you a few things you haven't thought of.

Definitely love the idea of videos. Sometimes it's hard to picture a face or remember a voice. Did he have a favourite smell? Aftershave or something. Favourite food.

I'm just so sorry you're going through this.

Can I ask his name or does that break a MN rule?

chickydoo Mon 03-Dec-12 23:12:31

Sending you love
I am here with the others to hold your hand through this hard journey you have ahead.
Life is so cruel sometimes

Ilovemydogandmydoglovesme Mon 03-Dec-12 23:19:16

Oh god I got that wrong, I meant I was reading about a mum who used the charity to help her kids, not set it up herself. blush

lisad123 Mon 03-Dec-12 23:24:54

You know we are all here, holding you up. If you need to rant just do it, if you need a weird request, just ask nothing is too much at a time like this.
I know there are a few dw on the other thread we talk on that will want to help too.

EugenesAxeChoppedDownANiceTree Mon 03-Dec-12 23:28:02

I am very sorry & will think of your family x

GoodKingWenSOLOslas Mon 03-Dec-12 23:41:22

Oh goodness oops sad I'm so sorry to hear that you are all in this situation. Thinking of you.x

Arseface Mon 03-Dec-12 23:45:14

I'm so so sorry oopsy.

It sounds like you and DH have a wonderful family and have already created so much happiness in the time you have together. Hope your remaining time with DH is filled with the very happiest of memories for you and the children.

I think all of us reading this will be a little kinder to our loved ones as a result of your post.

weegiemum Mon 03-Dec-12 23:53:33

I'm so, so sorry to hear this, and you are both being so brave. It's nothing like the same, but my dh is a GP who provides "home hospice" care, and I hope you have someone like him to keep your dh pain free and at home for as long as possible.

I have a friend from university who is slowly dying of an inoperable brain tumour. She has spent time writing letters and cards for her children which she has given to her dh, for their birthdays, wedding days, for her dd when she has her first child. It's been heartbreaking for her, but she's done it, because she's already starting to lose her memory but wanted to still be mum even though she might not be there.

I hope and pray the next 5 months are wonderful for you all. I can't remotely imagine what you are going through, but I think you've made the decision I hope I could make in the same situation. Lots of very un-MN hugs to you all.

lisad123 Mon 03-Dec-12 23:54:35

I have done boxes with a family I worked with once, happy for you to pm me if you like but mainly it was all the stuff you said and the extras from winstons wish.
Your ideas of days out sound great. Have you been in touch with Macmillan? They do one off payments you can use for anything, so a holiday, extra heating costs ect.
We used ours to take kids away when things got rough.
Thinking of you loads and prayers heading your way

Onlyjoking Thu 06-Dec-12 14:04:04

So sorry to read this news.
My DH died 4 1/2 years ago from a brain tumour. You've had some great suggestions already, the thing we weren't able to do and wished we'd have, were, one of those s build a bears with a voice recorded onto it for the children.
Take lots of photos and videos, any letters and cards for future birthdays etc.
Are you getting any support from Macmillan? They really are amazing, they gave us a lot of emotional support, helped me with how to tell our children. Sorted out meds so that DH was able to enjoy some things and make some special memories. We brought forward our twin DDs birthday and also Father's Day.
The hospice were fab, DH went in a couple of times to sort out his meds, hospice social workers sorted out carers at home to enable DH to be able to stay at home. District nurses were fab and came out daily, often many times a day and night. I will hold your family in my thoughts.

Thumbwitch Sat 15-Dec-12 06:37:26

Hi daisy - just caught up with MrsS's thread and seen you have your own now, so popping in to offer extra hand-holding.
Has your DH decided to stop work any time soon, to give you more time together? Or is he working hard still?

So sorry that it appears he isn't going to get any better but glad you have time together to make some great memories for yourselves. (((hugs)))

cornycarrotshack Mon 17-Dec-12 22:14:24

Oopsydaisy I also saw that you'd started your thread from a link posted on mrs shrek's. I'm so very sorry to hear about your dh. X

Snowstorm Mon 17-Dec-12 22:21:33

So sad. So sorry. Thinking of you all.

Thumbwitch Mon 17-Dec-12 22:54:06

I have to apologise, Oopsydaisy - I got you confused with another Daisy who is on Mrs Shrek's thread, whose DH is also undergoing chemo for potentially terminal cancer. I am so sorry that your DH is in the same situation and apologise again for confusing you with her.

Piemistress Fri 28-Dec-12 21:46:19

Thinking of you and your family, hugs x

kitbit Fri 28-Dec-12 21:51:45

No words, just a <hand>


ssd Fri 28-Dec-12 23:01:24

here's my hand too op, giving yours a squeeze xx

AllOverIt Fri 28-Dec-12 23:06:18

I'm so sorry. Holding your hand hmm

mumofthemonsters808 Fri 28-Dec-12 23:06:35

Another hand squeeze from me,feel free to do a finger pinch.

MonaLotte Fri 28-Dec-12 23:14:42

I am so so sorry. Also holding your hand xx

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now