Helpless and frustrated

I am having a really hard time coping lately. As my boyfriend progresses through his intense chemotherapy regimens, his body is having a harder time te cooperating.

Last Friday he went into the hospital for a 24 hour drip. He remained in the hospital over the weekend and went home last Monday, and was excited for an entire week of no treatment.

His week was not pleasant and he has would up back in the hospital for pain mgmt and fluids due to mucositis. Has anyone or their spouses dealt with this before.

It's so hard to see him here in so much pain and not be able to do anything to make it better. The medicines they can give him to help are creating other side effects and he is miserable. I don't know what to say to him or what to do. With his treatment we are 2 hrs away from each other during the week but I spend Friday nights-Monday morning with him and try to come up overnight during the week if I can.

I just feel very useless and mad that I can't do anything to help him. Anyone relate?

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  • Hi,
    I am going through something similar. My boyfriend is going to be getting a trial treatment for his 7th returning cancer. He is getting treatment in Louisiana and I am in Connecticut/Rhode Island. It is so hard because I can't do anything for him except be there for him over the phone. I am going to see him soon but its still so difficult and I feel so useless. I have sent him things to help keep him occupied, like a new book or a drawing pad (he loves to draw). That's all I can do for now besides give him words of encouragement.
  • Sorry about your boyfriend's situation. I wish I could give some good advice that would wrap everything up neatly, but I have the same trouble myself!

    My boyfriend is on his 6th cycle of chemo for an aggressive leukemia now, and every time his body gets weaker and weaker. At first he did his best to shield me from it- he's getting treatment in another prefecture, so we only met through Skype; he skipped days he felt too bad to keep up a good face. As things progressed, it became impossible to hide it.

    There was one moment I'll never forget: I had gone down to visit him, and one day, he just broke down. He said he wanted to stop eating, and just die, that he'd rather die than go back for more chemo. I felt paralyzed. What could I do? What could I say, when I understood his pain, both from physical stress and from loss of his dignity? I just sat by him. What could I say? I could only be present.

    There will be bad times like this. I've had days when I, too, wished it could all be over. I feel so guilty for those thoughts, but it's natural. Really, it's all natural. Feeling guilty, feeling helpless... It's not an exaggeration when people say cancer is a family disease, because it causes a ripple effect.

    But I want to tell you that you're doing a great job. You stayed-- and honestly, that alone is a rarity for young couples with cancer. You're still there, week after week even in his darkest times, and you'll be there if they get darker, too. Even if you're not there physically, you're always supporting him. And I really think that that's the best thing you can do for anyone you care about who is facing a potentially terminal illness. Just let him know that you'll always be there, even at the end, and he'll never need to be alone.

    If you ever need to talk about these things, you can message me any time!