with a little help from my friends…

I am back at work this week and missing the beach views we had from our holiday apartment. The current view from my desk is not quite so inspiring…

Anyway, I really wanted to broach the subject of support for those (me!) going through a cancer treatment experience. Over the past year and a bit I have discovered that if you visit any cancer support group, be it online or face-to-face, you will find that pretty much everyone has a story to tell of those that weren’t there for them during their cancer treatments. And, shockingly, the person that deserts the cancer patient is almost universally not just an acquaintance but someone VERY close to them.

I had wonderful support during my cancer treatment period (which, by the way, takes one step closer to being finished with my last Herceptin treatment being this coming Friday!) from many friends and family members. But, just like so many others I had some who just disappeared.

I’d like to be able to say that it was okay that this happened. But, you know, I just don’t think it is okay. The disappearance of people from my life (friends and family) who I had thought would stick by me in times of hardship hurt like hell. There’s no way I can stick a big pink ribbon bandaid over the emotional wounds and make it better.

Leaving someone to cope without your support during cancer treatment is not a way of “not bothering” them. It is a way to show them how little you actually care…

While I am deeply saddened by the desertions and the loss of friendships, I can say that for everyone one person that disappeared there were many who stepped forward and to those people I say THANK YOU. Every email, phone-call, comment on Facebook, Twitter or breastcancer.org was hugely appreciated. Every meal delivered, bunch of flowers, card, vacuuming of the house, cleaning of the bathrooms was a blessing.

The only way I got through this past year was with a little help from my friends…


8 thoughts on “with a little help from my friends…

  1. Marie Ennis-O'Connor (@JBBC)

    Jenn, I was one of those for whom support from close friends wasn’t forthcoming. I found treatment a lonely time and the loneliness continued after treatment ended. It was only by connecting to an online support community of bloggers that I found the support I had been missing. Whether you find support among family, friends, a cancer support centre or online, we all need it to get through the tough times.

    1. jennt28 Post author

      I’m so sorry it was lonely Marie! Even though I had some great support it very often felt lonely too. Sitting in a chemo chair is an isolating experience EVEN IF there is someone sitting next to you to keep you company…

  2. Pingback: Weekly Round-Up « Journeying Beyond Breast Cancer

  3. Susan

    I understand how you wonder why those who disappeared did, when you expected them to be by your side. I felt I really learned who my friends were when I got breast cancer and especially when I had my local recurrence. Someone who was there the first time screamed terrible things to me accusing me of nonsense when I was hanging by a thread because I was loaded with surgical procedures on my breasts as a result of my recurrence. I am glad I found out who my real friends were. I am so grateful to the real friends that are in my life including all of the incredible people I have met through social media, including you. Congratulations are being able to go to your last herceptin treatment. XoXoXo – Susan

    1. jennt28 Post author

      Susan, I love this band of people who have been through this as well. We all understand each other far more than our friends and family can hope to. Herceptin fatigue, sadness and aches today… But in 3 weeks when I don’t have to go and repeat it again I will really be able to start healing. I am so hoping the Herceptin runny nose goes away quickly! We’ve had to spend so much on tissues this past year.

  4. Cameron


    I have a quick question about your blog, would you mind emailing me when you get a chance?





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