The Guy’s Guide to Breast Cancer If the woman you love is diagnosed with breast cancer, you have to cope, too. By Gina Shaw From the WebMD Archives Men looking for ways to support a wife, sister, mother, or other woman with breast cancer may want to learn from experts and other men who have been in the same position. In August , Jackie Thomas was diagnosed with breast cancer and quickly had surgery and started chemotherapy. Her husband, Michael, a Lutheran minister with a background as a chaplain at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha found that his experience counseling others through illness hadn’t prepared him for this. You’re used to being in control and you’re not in control. You want to come up with a solution and there is no solution. It’s not just a “woman’s issue,” say the men who’ve been affected. But many of them know little about the disease itself and find themselves at a loss as to how to help the women they love cope emotionally much less cope themselves.
The Real Scoop on Dating After Cancer
My grandmother died without her two breasts due to the cancer that ravaged her small frame. As a child, I accepted that her one-piece, terry romper would fall down revealing her flat chest riddled with the scars that were supposed to save her life. When she put on a bathing suit, I would stare amazed that her chest suddenly had two, well formed cups. Her body was an oddity we rarely spoke of, but loved nonetheless. A few years ago, my mother told my sister and I that she had tested positive for mutations in her BRCA test ; which is a type of DNA analysis to figure out if a woman is at a greater risk of developing breast cancer.
There was talk of my mother undergoing a double mastectomy followed by breast implants.
Although there might not be a perfect time to tell someone about everything you have been through, there are perhaps less ideal times. I often advise patients not to have this discussion on first dates as this is a lot to process for both you and your potential partner. There is also a level of vulnerability that is required for a discussion like this that may not be suited for very initial stages of a new relationship.
When you are ready, it is important however to mention that you have had breast cancer before being intimate with someone. Below are a few tips to consider as you think about having these conversations: Try to come from a place of love and connection. Find your comfort level — It is often obvious to a partner if you are uncomfortable.
These feelings will likely impact overall satisfaction for both you and your partner. If it would help you feel more comfortable, wear clothing that feels right for you. If you feel self-conscious about scars or changes to your body while being intimate, experiment with wearing a t-shirt, find lingerie that makes you feel attractive or consider keeping the light off. The more comfortable you become with your partner, the easier this will become. Having an open dialogue allows you to be vulnerable with someone both physically and emotionally — ideally they will respond with the same level of openness and honesty.
Generation Why: Dating With Cancer
Finding Your Way Single Women: She had no way to find help as a single woman looking for a relationship, wanting to know when and how to tell about her mastectomy and her disease. She wrote the book Up Front: Sex and the Post-Mastectomy Woman, a personal account of how she coped with these problems unfortunately out of print, but worth tracking down in a library or a used book store.
Each time she met someone new, Linda had to struggle with when and how to tell, and then how to behave in intimate situations.
“Breast cancer survivors offer a unique understanding of the value of life—and love.”) The women you’re about to meet— Jenny, Kristina, and Nicole—are proof.
Strategies for Couples Coping with Cancer November 4, No Comments If your partner has been diagnosed with cancer, there are strategies and resources to help you through. But when cancer strikes, reality sets in. Every day thousands of women are diagnosed with cancer, and every day thousands of spouses and partners step into the role of caregiver.
Unfortunately, there is no script for this new role, and that can leave many partners feeling lost and frustrated. Cancer has struck one body but two hearts, and this leaves everyone in need of support. Still, nothing prepares a family for a battle with cancer. Though Bonnie had to give up her year career as a hand therapist, she has continued to feel well enough to take their kids—Christopher, 8, and Stephanie, 12—to and from school and to help with homework.
Together they have found a way to juggle responsibilities. Friends have pitched in with meals, and Bill has picked up laundry duty and nightly household clutter clearing.
How to Be a Friend to Someone With Cancer
Although the overwhelming majority of women have biological children, this category also includes non-biological children including foster and stepchildren. Interview Procedures Semi-structured phone interviews were conducted with respondents. Prior to the interview, respondents were read an IRB-approved statement of informed consent before they agreed to participate in the study. Interview topics included initial diagnosis experiences, family background, treatment concerns and decisions, and available support networks along with the impact of a diagnosis on future family plans and personal relationships.
Interviews averaged 60 minutes. Although we did find evidence of the various forms of social support that have been documented in other research on breast cancer such as tangible support , we did not go into the data analysis with preconceived notions or seeking to document what forms of social support do or do not exist.
CancerMatch is a powerful cancer survivor networking and dating site. Meet people diagnosed with cancer from all over the world. 1. Completely free.
Share via Email Joanna Clarke-Jones: Breast cancer study uncovers new genetic variants for increased risk Read more I was lucky: As I shared the news, I almost felt I had to comfort some people, who were able to tap into their upset and sadness more readily than I was. It took months of just managing to put one foot in front of the other. I wanted to be in control, to know each step as it was going to happen. Get the lump out, have radiotherapy, treatment over by Christmas, back to work in the new year.
My breast wound refused to heal to order.
Online Dating Site
Fireworks will go off at the end of the date real ones, obviously and the rest will be history. I dream of an uncomplicated love story, because recently, my life story has been … nothing but complicated. The news came one year after I’d up and moved from New Jersey to California.
Carole, a year-old widow, began dating someone three weeks before she was diagnosed with breast cancer in ‘I was scared and dating was certainly not in the forefront of my mind anymore. I did not want to leave him wondering why I hadn’t been in touch, so I called him a week after my diagnosis to tell him about the news.
Slim, attractive, intelligent sixtysomething female seeks warm, outgoing male. Must like cats, black humour – and not mind cancer. If Ruth Greene were to put a lonely hearts ad in her local Cambridge paper, it might read something like the above. But Greene, 65, knows it is unlikely anyone would respond. In the course of her life, Greene has been a marketing executive and an entrepreneur setting up both a vegetarian convenience meal service and a typing service.
Her colourful home is full of pictures, books, and vibrant knitting. There have been a few men in her life recently: She understands the fear of falling in love and then losing someone. Greene was in a long relationship with a Reuters journalist who died of cancer suddenly in July , when he was I had lost my partner, my future, my status. She found a platonic male friend who could help with the DIY and cook a meal.
But anything deeper eluded her.
Dating someone who has cancer
Kagrel With questions, forums and idealtanitim. Cancer guys can be great. Cancer guys can make great boyfriends, just like any other idealtanitim.
Telling someone who you just recently started dating or have become serious with that you have cancer is a surefire way to weed out the bad apples from your bunch. Those who can handle your diagnosis while dating will most certainly be able to better handle the multitude of other concerns that come up when a couple is together for a lengthy.
I asked my friend to take pictures of me, so I could remember what my real breasts looked like. I always enjoyed my perky B minus cups as I sometimes fondly called them and never had the desire to upgrade. My nipples were always a huge erogenous zone for me that I knew I would sadly have to say goodbye to. The next morning I woke up and watched my beautiful baby girl sleeping.
I just needed to take care of business. When I arrived at the hospital, I went into pre-op. First my breast surgeon came in to see me, then my plastic surgeon. He told me he liked my blue nail polish. I thanked him and asked if I was going to die. He took my hand and promised me that I would be okay.
Tips for Dating With Breast Cancer
Please enter a valid email address Submit We respect your privacy. What am I, a guy, doing answering this question? Well, in addition to being a longtime health journalist, the author of five books about manners and an etiquette columnist for The New York Times and Parade magazine, I survived testicular cancer. My cancer experience raised for me many of the same kinds of dating dilemmas that women face with breast cancer. When you want to. This is in your control.
According to Gina Maisano, author of Intimacy After Breast Cancer, attitude is everything when it comes to dating — especially for women dealing with breast cancer. “You can look at yourself as damaged goods or you can look at yourself as the strongest superhero on the planet,” Masaino says.
Vote Saved My Life Although I left the dating world almost 25 years ago, I still remember it as a place fraught with land mines. For single men and women living life beyond cancer, dating represents an even larger challenge. In addition to the usual questions – how to connect, how soon to call and how to deal with first date jitters – there are deeper, more unsettling questions. When should I reveal my medical history?
How will my scars be received? How has cancer changed me and the type of person I want to date? Thanks so much for talking about this sensitive topic with me. Can you give me a little background on your dating life beyond cancer? When I was diagnosed with breast cancer four and a half years ago, I was in a committed relationship. The news hit us hard, but, instead of banding together, my boyfriend reacted by breaking up with me three days after my diagnosis.
Finally, we reconciled and I forgave his abandonment because his wife had died years earlier from cancer.