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I am and I need a virtual slap, please oblige

(20 Posts)
suckitupbuttercups Thu 12-Oct-17 12:03:12

Name change as outing etc
Been around years though, Maui TKL , Mexican house thief, etc

My friend is sick, and it’s been years and years. She’s amazing and I’m her hapless friend who tags along looking on thinking ‘ fuck I couldn’t do that !’
Except now she’s really ill and is still amazing and I can’t stop wanting to cry. Obviously I don’t around her because I’m not a total fuckmuppet.
But this isn’t about me it’s about her and I’m being a twat.
Can’t help it though, never ending chemo and shitty injections and she smiles and cracks on. Until now she’s not smiling or cracking on but she is still being herself, wonderful !
Me I leave the kids or her and fall in a pathetic heap.
So come on mn’s please give me a slap and tell me it’s not about how I feel.

DingleBerries Thu 12-Oct-17 12:07:02

I've been in your position.

I was a crying heap of fucking mess and my friend needed me.

I ended up going to the doctor explaining that my best friend was dying of breast cancer, the doctor (same age as me and my friend early 30's) also shed a tear.

I started taking Citalopram and don't regret it one bit. It gave me the strength to be there for my friend, give her the help and support she needed before she passed away.

I'm so sorry you're friend is ill. I'm so sorry to hear you have to go through this too. It's fucking heartbreaking.

You know those helplines aren't just for those suffering with cancer but friends and family also. Make use of that if you want to.

I didn't want to talk or be counselled. I just wanted to be with her every minute I could.

ChickensGoBoak Thu 12-Oct-17 12:07:59

It's not all about you and how you feel, but your feelings are all perfectly valid, so bottling them up won't do any of you any good.

Having been in a situation with a friend who was 'reaching the end' there's every chance that she wants to shed the brave face and have a little wallow as well.

DingleBerries Thu 12-Oct-17 12:08:35

I'm not assuming your friend will die of course! Just that I was in your position and unfortunately my lovely friend did.

Fucking stupid bastard cancer.

AnneLovesGilbert Thu 12-Oct-17 12:09:19

You're a lovely friend who's sad someone you love and admire so much is suffering. Your sadness is better out than in and if you're crying when you're on your own you're not heaping your pain on top of hers and are being a support to her when you're with her, which is what she needs. Crying's not bad, it's healthy, and you're also going through something difficult as you love her so much.

Berating yourself for having feelings is a complete waste of energy! flowers

Keep supporting her, and look after yourself.

suckitupbuttercups Thu 12-Oct-17 12:17:43

Yes it is cancer fucking 8 year battle, sneakycretinessbastard. And yes terminal but you lot aren’t helping I am trying to work but keep running to the loos for a sob and now you made me cry more. I really need to toughen up as it’s going to get harder isn’t it.

aaaaargghhhhelpme Thu 12-Oct-17 12:22:03

Oh op flowers

I'm not going to give you a virtual slap. Honestly cancer is just shit. You're allowed to find this tough. I can't imagine what kind of mess I'd be in.

Carry on being the amazing friend you are. And find other ways to vent/cry/scream. Don't bottle it up. We're always here for a rant flowers

DingleBerries Thu 12-Oct-17 12:22:55

It is terminal. I'm so sorry to hear that.

Yes it will get harder there's no point trying to hide that. It might be worth going to your GP and seeing what kind of help you can get.
There's no point falling apart and not looking after yourself. It won't work to say that it's not about you and you need a slap. You need help and support too.
The better help and support you get, the better strength and support you can be for your friend.

OurMiracle1106 Thu 12-Oct-17 12:45:21

You have every right to be hurting watching someone so close fight a battle that you know they will at some stage lose. You are entitled to cry, in fact it’s healthy. You are grieving for the life she isn’t going to have. Be gentle with yourself.

I will happily slap you for not looking after yourself though if that helps. But I feel like you just need a hug and a listening ear.
flowersbrew

suckitupbuttercups Thu 12-Oct-17 13:42:39

I suppose I just feel scared and a little lost. The family are all coming in now. Quite right ofcourse but I want to scream what have you done for the last 8 years ! Wrong of course but she has worked, done charity work looked after 2 sets of able but elderly parents raised a family of 6 and held every sodding Xmas single handed lay. Sorry I am ranting

Allfednonedead Thu 12-Oct-17 13:48:14

Are you aware of the circles of support concept? That's the idea that you always lean out for support. Don't tell your friend you feel awful, but do tell your husband. He can moan about it to his mates down the pub.
I like this because it acknowledges that it's really tough supporting someone who is sick (or bereaved or whatever), and you deserve to be supported through it, but reminds you to push the burden outward.
Do whatever it takes to look after you, so you can stay strong for your friend. If that's crying in the loos at work, so be it.

MadForlt Thu 12-Oct-17 13:50:45

You know what? Serious illness is often harder for the people closest to the ill person than it is for the person that is ill.

The ill person gets to focus on everything that's going on around them, whats going on in other people's lives, and use that positively in the moment to think beyond themselves. I'm not saying they don't have shit times, of course they do.

But the people around them are focusing on the person that's ill. And there's not so much positivity there.

Its hard. It's shit. Yanbu.

SusanTheGentle Thu 12-Oct-17 13:56:21

You poor love, you and your friend. How upsetting for you - of course you feel badly.

This might help you - it's the Ring Theory of Venting: lifehacker.com/use-the-ring-theory-to-know-how-to-comfort-someone-977848409

Basically, your friend is in the middle, and she gets to scream and cry and do whatever with whoever. Her family are in the next ring, close friends are in the ring after that, so I guess that's where you are.

The idea is that you're also upset and in need of support, but you turn outwards to get that - you'd never lean on her or her partner (I know you're not doing, just explaining the idea). But, you need support and to be heard, too, so you find someone in a ring outside of yours - your mum, your husband, mumsnet - to yell and scream and moan at.

So YANBU and you're already handling this as well as can be expected by supporting her and coming here to vent outwards. Please look after yourself, and by extension be looking after your friend by making sure you're mentally able to help her, by continuing to do that.

flowers and light for all of you.

lasttimeround Thu 12-Oct-17 13:57:58

You know what every now and then cry in front of her. Tell her how everything she's going through makes you feel. That you're scared of losing her. That's she's bloody brilliant. Sometimes this helps and I'll person tap into and validate their own feelings.
But when you've done that give yourself a deadline as to when you can give in again. Yes it's about her but people being with you, really and emotionally with you is also valuable. Even if that means your friend has a big snotty cry in front of you and you're the ill one.

SusanTheGentle Thu 12-Oct-17 13:58:09

When I said her family, btw, I meant her close family, not randoms that have just shown up; they aren't as close as you and you can bitch away about them here in a safe space if you want?

lasttimeround Thu 12-Oct-17 14:01:37

Also cry on your own. It hurts when someone is so sick of you need to cry you need to cry. After that get back to being a support. No folding.

Allfednonedead Thu 12-Oct-17 14:17:42

Oops, cross-posted with SusantheGentle, who put it much better than me. So yeah, what she said!

suckitupbuttercups Thu 12-Oct-17 14:18:21

Thank you all, you are helping so much. Obviously I don’t let on my feelings to her or her dh and I do vent at our other friend who stays on the periphery. But she is dealing with her dh who’s just been diagnosed with a different shitty disease. So am at the moment on my jack jones, my dh is great but doesn’t do sympathetic emotions other than children. I’m sending lots of jokey texts to cheer her up which seem to be working but it’s hard to keep smiling isn’t it?

MatildaTheCat Thu 12-Oct-17 14:24:15

It's fine and normal to cry and sob. Can you allow yourself a .time slot' to have a good old cry each day and then be determined to plaster the smile back on and be the rock?

You say she has a large family? Are her dc old enough to be helpful? If she's putting on her cheerful face for them all the time she may even appreciate time to sit with you and be sad. To cry together and maybe write messages for her family. It's possible she would value that if she has to be cheerful all the rest of the time.

Big hugs to you all.

SusanTheGentle Thu 12-Oct-17 15:18:51

FWIW I think it is ok to let her know how much you care for her and that you are devastated for her; the trick is managing to do that without making her feel dumped on. But it's ok to cry together about the awfulness in a supporting-in way, and then come away and have a ranty shouty bawl about how it affects you later.

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