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Not treating lymphoma

(7 Posts)
Houseconfusion Wed 28-Sep-16 07:30:13

I have a dear very eccentric and weird if you don't love her ain't back home in Asia. Lifetime single, a battle axe very very fiery tempered. and enjoys doing all sorts of odd jobs for all and sundry. As in - paying bills for the disabled aunt of the neighbour's mother in law she has met but once in passing. Won't accept lifts or favours. Or pay rises. Exists ok frugality. Quite uhm unique. My dads sister. 65. Anorexic but these things don't get diagnosed there.

In 2013 she developed lumps on her neck with associated weight loss fever etc. Fast forward to now - confirmed hodgkins - she won't go for treatment. My dad who arguably has the most influence on her has tried his convincing best (and he is a fantastic convincer part of his job) - he has been shouted down. She will not treat it.

She is going about business as usual.
Her argument is she's seen folk with cancer get treated and die in 3 years after horrendous chemo. She's made it 3 years without treatment and even if she died right this instant she's made the right choice apparently.

She's very very touchy now. Has cut off contact with most family including most of her siblings and me as well. Very very on the edge.

I feel awful about it all especially as she's cut me off and that's unthinkable. I will let my poor dad know this but I'm not entirely sure what he can do because if anyone tries to tell her anything she will rant at them and storm out to save neighbour's dog down the road.

So what do I do. Nobody can force her to get chemo. With that many lumps how is she even alive for going on 4 years now with untreated lymphoma?

My dad says he is devastated that he stands to lose his little sister but doesn't know what to do.

And about cutting People off. I feel awful. I've nerve had a birthday she didn't wish me but this that she won't because she hasn't for my DH as well. Complete silent treatment. Apparently other cousins and relatives have had the same experience. She won't rest. Won't stop working. Will go off on one if you suggest she slows down.

How is she even alive still? It's untreated cancer that's decorated her visibly with many lumps sad

OP’s posts: |
timelytess Wed 28-Sep-16 07:38:23

Just send her your love and anything you think might help her be comfortable. Don't expect anything back. She might be as mad as hell that you've kept in touch but she needs someone now and you need to feel that you've done what you can. flowers

PhoenixJasmine Wed 28-Sep-16 07:43:08

I think ultimately we should respect others' right to self determination; she doesn't want to seek treatment, that's that. Is she cutting people off if they keep on at her to get treatment?

Houseconfusion Wed 28-Sep-16 07:44:40

Thank you. I've sent her many emails and messages no reply. I've heard from my mum (broken up from dad for 15 yrs now but in touch with his family and him) that aunt asks her for pics of my DS and videos of him blowing raspberries etc

Why the fuck can't she ask me for them. She's mad at me since February because I didn't answer her call. Sent me a message saying "since you won't pick up fine I won't contact you again". Wtf? I was busy! With a poonami! She's done this exact thing with a cousin. And tried it with my mum too after my mum missed a call. Raved at her for 59 minutes before my mum could explain.

Oh god.

OP’s posts: |
PikachuSayBoo Wed 28-Sep-16 07:46:19

I think it's a valid choice considering her age. I know 65 isn't that old and she could live for another 20 years, etc but maybe she's not that interested about living into old age???

Hodgkinsons is an aggressive cancer and it quite possibly has spread by now making chance of a cure more remote. I assume she has discussed options with her Dr?

I'm sorry. My dad died from lymphoma in his late 60s and treatment wasn't very nice. He took a bit of time deciding whether to have treatment or not and in the end chose to try but obviously it didn't work. I think all your family need to let your aunt know that you support her decision so that she doesn't feel isolated.

Houseconfusion Wed 28-Sep-16 07:47:25

My dad says it's a lost cause he won't try any further convincing. He said she had at least agreed to "see the chemo man" whoever that is but then ranted at him and stormed out and complained about the hygiene flaws in the hospital and frankly they were very displeased. She's just existing on air with tons of lumps it's going on 4 years now (how?!?!) and my dad has said it's constantly on his mind but ultimately he thinks it's obviously her decision and that's that.

OP’s posts: |
Zucker Thu 13-Oct-16 16:27:13

It is her decision though. You all have to leave her be with it. As you say she's 65 years old and has presumably lived a life she's happy with. 4 years she has lived with this awful disease, has the family been at her for the whole 4 years?

Would you, when you reach 65, want others to tell you how to live?

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