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How do I support my friend?

(3 Posts)
daydreamer45 Tue 17-Oct-17 17:24:39

My friend has just been diagnosed with breast cancer, very early stage, not spread anywhere else. She has been offered a lumpectomy with radiotherapy or a mastectomy so it is very serious. She is understandably very angry but is almost pretending that it's not happening to her. She keeps raging that she doesn't want surgery even though the consultant is pushing to set a date. I am concerned that they will lose patience with her and it will spread somewhere else before she has her surgery. What can I do to help her? I have listened endlessly and given my opinion when asked but she just keeps saying that she wants it to go away and won't consider any of her surgeons advice. I am trying to be patient but I am worried. She has a young family and she can't seem to think of them in all this. Please help.

TheHodgeHeg Mon 23-Oct-17 02:44:32

So sorry to hear this, it must be very difficult.

At the end of the day it's her choice what treatment she does and doesn't take. Having said that does she have a partner you could speak to? They might be more likely to be able to get to the bottom of what her fears are and why she doesn't want to take the treatment options offered. Once these are known she and her partner should have another chat with the surgeon and address the issues.

It's so hard watching someone not taking the options you think are right but you have to accept the course they choose (we're currently going through similar with MIL and it's been tough and caused lots of upset).

Flyingprettycretonnecurtains Thu 02-Nov-17 19:05:11

Hi. I had bc and have had lumpectomy. It isn't going to go away. Surgery is the major treatment and for a lumpectomy and sentinel lobe biopsy you are in as a day case. I was in a cafe the next day having coffee and cake. The most painful thing is the biopsy under mammogram. All doable.

It is serious but not the end of the world. The literature they give you is really scary. Mine is still wrapped up in the wrappings by my bed and I'm finished treatment. If she has the op in about two or three weeks SHE WILL BE CANCER FREE. Radiotherapy is a belt and braces thing. Lumpectomy is fine. Yes, I have a scar but my nork is now perkier and smaller. I will have an op on the other old, droopy boob at some point to equalise it. I was driving ten days after my ops (I have had to have a few operations to clear margins). The operations aren't bad at all and pain is perfectly manageable.

Show her this by all means. It is ok to be scared but she can die a long drawn out death or, operate, listen to professionals and have a very high percentage chance of survival. The NHS has been amazing. What I thought about is that Fanny Burney had the first ever mastectomy in the 1700s, obviously with no anesthetic. She lived and if she could go through that then I could go through removal of 34mm of tumour in an asceptic NHS environment completely knocked out. Modern anesthetics are brill.

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