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Supporting DH(3 Posts)
FIL has thyroid cancer. He had extensive surgery 12 months ago followed by radioactive iodine treatment.
DH is not great about talking about stuff to do with his family, but from what I've gathered the prognosis is not good. Spoke briefly to FIL myself this morning on the phone and he sounded very low.
Not really sure what I'm trying to achieve posting here, but as DH is very unlikely to talk to me about how he's feeling, I just wanted to say something to anonymous strangers instead. I really want to comfort him
So sorry you're all going through this
Is there a situation in which he does sometimes open up? I don't mean about this necessarily, but in general - i.e. after a few drinks, on a walk, during a trip away?
If so it might be worth recreating the moment and gently nudging him to talk. I find it really difficult to talk about my mother's cancer. It's not that I don't want to, but I find it hard to bring it up, to keep talking about it, etc. but if my DP asks me specific questions, I find it much easier.
Just try to avoid questions with obvious answers, like 'how do you feel?' (the answer will probably be 'bloody rubbish, obviously') but specific questions about treatment, results, etc. can be easier to answer. He might simply find it too terrifying to talk about, in which case you may just need to let him know you're there if he ever does want to talk.
Good luck - hope things with your FIL are better than you think.
The way DH tends to react to things like this is to not talk as I think by talking things almost become too real. For him buttoning up is how he copes.
I think the point you make about specific questions is a good one. DH is taking the children to visit FIL in the week before Christmas which I think is a good practical thing to do (it's a 200 mile journey so we usually only manage a couple of visits a year).
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